This book is not available in our membership service
This book is not yet available in our membership service due to
restrictions in our agreements with the publisher. We hope to be able
to offer this title in our membership service as soon as possible. In the meantime you can purchase this book individually.
Desmond Bagley was born in 1923 in Kendal and brought up in Blackpool, beginning his working life, aged 14, in the printing industry. He wrote 16 novels, becoming one of the world's top-selling authors, with his books translated into more than 30 languages. He died in 1983.read more
Reviews for Flyaway / Windfall
Flyaway is a pedestrian thriller which tells the tale of the 1978 hunt for an airplane presumed lost during the 1936 London to Cape Town Air Race. Most of the story is set in and around the Sahara Desert as protagonist security chief Max Stafford searches for the obsessed son of the pilot and the plane. Max is aided by Lucas Byrne, an ex-pat American who has lived in the area for the last thirty-five years, after deserting during the war. I found the twists predictable, although that is not necessarily a fair conclusion. I read the book many years ago, but remembered nothing of it when I re-read it for the "Go Review That Book!" game. That it's so forgettable is telling. Save for the interesting descriptions of the desert and the Tuareg, one of the nomadic tribes of the region, there's not much to recommend it.One of the main problems for me was the character of Max Stafford. He seemed to serve so little purpose to the actual story except to be the means by which everything is put together at the end. The other issue I had with the book is one that stuns me.I am notoriously non-PC. I don't want every story to be served up with the "right" attitude to sensitive issues. I certainly dislike the trend of books being judged out of their time and context, leading to claims that great works of their day are devalued because of attitudes that don't pass modern muster. So colour me shocked that I found this book irritatingly colonial. It was written in 1978, but it smacks of the fifties. Even the introduction of Bryne, the best character in the book, is disappointing in its reliance on having a white, and thus in some way more credible, guide. I rarely find offence in such things, but even I was affected by stuff like this:To a character bruised from having been beaten: "Better not go out into the streets just yet. Someone from the Race Relations Board might get you for trying to cross the colour line."With reference to the main post office in Algiers, as if Arabic architecture didn't have it's own long and proud history: "...an Eastern attempt to emulate the reverential and cathedral-like atmosphere affected by the major British banks."On his attempts to speak German: "No foreigner minds you speaking his language badly providing you make the attempt. Excepting the French, of course."On reflection, that last one makes me laugh.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.