Readers familiar with Noah Hawley, the originator and producer of the wildly popular television series, Fargo, will gravitate towards his new novel, Before The Fall. This story will definitely bring him many more fans.
A small plane leaves Martha’s Vineyard for N.Y.C. carrying a wide assortment of people; the seasoned Captain, a privileged, party boy co-pilot, a stewardess trying to change her life’s course, the ALC news network president who has many enemies and his wife, daughter and son, a Wall Street mogul being investigated by the Feds for dealings with nefarious foreign individuals, his wife and a down on his luck talented painter who may have squandered his chances at success years ago. The plane crashes but surprisingly, the painter (a competitive swimmer at an earlier age) manages to rescue the little boy and they both survive.
Because of the celebrity of the people on board and the unlikely fact that there are two survivors, the news media goes crazy(especially the ALC news anchor who bears a sharp resemblance to Bill O’Reilly)as the FAA and other Federal agencies investigate the cause of the crash. Moving from person to person before and after the crash, Hawley weaves together a suspenseful account of what could have possibly happened and hones in on the painter who initially becomes a reluctant hero.
A strong character driven read with suspenseful moments and interesting back stories may have you thinking of a number of reasons for sabotage. This is a smart thriller with a surprising ending that will lead you to reflect on what happened and why. Perhaps, a sequel is in order?