Landing: A Novel

Paperback | August 11, 2008

byEmma Donoghue

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A delightful, old-fashioned love story with a uniquely twenty-first-century twist, Landing is a romantic comedy that explores the pleasures and sorrows of long-distance relationships the kind millions of us now maintain mostly by plane, phone, and Internet. Sle is a stylish citizen of the new Dublin, a veteran flight attendant whos traveled the world. Jude is a twenty-five-year-old archivist, stubbornly attached to the tiny town of Ireland, Ontario, in which she was born and raised. On her first plane trip, Judes and Sles worlds touch and snag at Heathrow Airport. In the course of the next year, their lives, and those of their friends and families, will be drawn into a new, shaky orbit. This sparkling, lively story explores age-old questions: Does where you live matter more than who you live with? What would you give up for love, and would you be a fool to do so?

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A delightful, old-fashioned love story with a uniquely twenty-first-century twist, Landing is a romantic comedy that explores the pleasures and sorrows of long-distance relationships the kind millions of us now maintain mostly by plane, phone, and Internet. Sle is a stylish citizen of the new Dublin, a veteran flight attendant whos tra...

EMMA DONOGHUE is an Irish novelist, playwright, and historian. She is the author of four novels, two collections of short stories, and a collection of fairy tales. She lives in London, Ontario.

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:336 pages, 8 × 5.3 × 0.8 inPublished:August 11, 2008Publisher:Houghton Mifflin HarcourtLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:015603378X

ISBN - 13:9780156033787

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Read from the Book

New Years EveDISORIENTATION (from French, dsorienter, to turn from the east).(1) Loss of ones sense of position or direction.(2) Mental confusion.Later on, Jude Turner would look back on December thirty-first as the last morning her life had been firm, graspable, all in one piece.Shed been sleeping naked and dreamless. She woke at six, as always, in the house in Ireland, Ontario, where shed been born; she didnt own an alarm clock. In her old robe she gave her narrow face the briefest of glances in the mirror as she splashed it with cold water, damped down her hair, reached for her black rectangular glasses. The third and eighth stairs groaned under her feet, and the stove was almost out; she wedged logs into the bed of flushed ash. She drank her coffee black from a blue mug shed made in second grade.As Jude drew on her second cigarette it was beginning to get light. She watched the backyard through a portcullis of two-foot icicles: Were those fresh raccoon tracks? Soon shed shovel the driveway, then the Petersons next door. The neighbour on the other side was Bub, a cryptic turkey plucker with a huge mustache. Usually her mother would be down by now, hair in curlers, but since Boxing Day, Rachel Turner had been away at her sisters in England. The silence trickled like oil into Judes ears.Shed walk the three blocks to the museum by seven so she could get some real work done before anyone called, or dropped by to donate a mangy fur tippet, because this afternoon was the post-mortem on the feeble results of the Christmas fundraising campaign. At twenty-five, Judethe curatorwas the age of most of the board members grandchildren.The phone started up with a shrill jangle, and though she was inclined not to answer it, she did. It was the accent she recognized, more than the voice.Louise! Merry Christmas. Why are you whispering? Jude broke in on her aunts gabbled monologue. Not herself, how?I just dont think Louise interrupted herself in a louder voice: Im only on the phone, Rachel, Ill be right in.As she stubbed out her cigarette, Jude tried to picture the house in Englanda town called Lutonthough shed never seen it. Put Mom on the line, would you?Instead of answering, her aunt called out, Could you stick the kettle on? Then, hissed into the phone, Just a tick.Waiting, Jude felt irritation bloom behind her eyes. Her aunt had always liked her gin; could she possibly be drunk at, whatshe checked the grandfather clock and added five hours11:30 in the morning?Louise came back on the line, in the exaggerated style of a community theatre production: Your mothers making tea.Whats up, is she sick?Shed never complain, and I havent told her Im ringing you, her aunt whispered, but if you ask me, you should pop over and bring her home.Pop over, as if Luton were a couple of kilometres down the road. Jude couldnt keep her voice from cracking like a whip. Could I please speak to my mother?The yellow pot, Louise shouted, the others for herbal. And

Table of Contents

ContentsNew Years Eve1Travel Sickness7Sic Transit15What When Where How Why28Genii Loci33Old Habits44Foreign Correspondents54Virtually Nothing66Family Feeling75Human Habitation83Purge90Consequences105Home Base111Peak Time139That Which Moves, That Which Changes168Songs of Absence193Here and Now200Geography Lessons222Heavy Weather236Flying Visit250Spring Forward, Fall Back255Living History262Going the Distance276Provenance303Place Markers312

Editorial Reviews

In her affecting fifth novel, Donoghue (Slammerkin) explores the idea that true love can conquer all. Jude Turner is a 25-year-old androgynous Luddite who's rooted to her small Canadian town of Ireland. She's also uneasy about flying, but forces herself to board a plane when she hears that her mother, visiting family in the U.K., may be ill. On the plane she meets the older, feminine, worldly Síle O'Shaughnessy, a flight attendant who lives in the other Ireland. After exchanging contact info, the duo part and find themselves thinking of one another and writing to each other as they lead their respective lives: Jude as the curator of a tiny museum who has the occasional dalliance with her former love, Rizla; Síle in bustling Dublin, entrenched in a complacent relationship with her longtime partner, Kathleen. Jude and Síle fall in love over the course of their correspondence and try to make their relationship work despite the distance between them, nay-saying friends, jealous exes and their own nagging doubts. That Jude and Síle are so vividly opposite is the slightest bit precious, but Donoghue mitigates the boilerplate aspects of this love story with an abiding compassion for her characters. There's a lot to like here, but nothing to really love.