The Flight Attendant
Cassandra Bowden is no stranger to hungover mornings. She’s a binge drinker, her job with the airline making it easy to find adventure, and the occasional blackouts seem to be inevitable. She lives with them, and the accompanying self-loathing. When she awakes in a Dubai hotel room, she tries to piece the previous night back together, already counting the minutes until she has to catch her crew shuttle to the airport. She quietly slides out of bed, careful not to aggravate her already pounding head, and looks at the man she spent the night with. She sees his dark hair. His utter stillness. And blood, a slick, still wet pool on the crisp white sheets. Afraid to call the police–she’s a single woman alone in a hotel room far from home–Cassie begins to lie. She lies as she joins the other flight attendants and pilots in the van. She lies on the way to Paris as she works the first class cabin. She lies to the FBI agents in New York who meet her at the gate. Soon it’s too late to come clean-or face the truth about what really happened back in Dubai. Could she have killed him? If not, who did?
My opinion: I was pretty excited to read this after seeing the description. Bohjalian’s novels are hit or miss with me. A couple I’ve really enjoyed (Midwives and The Sleepwalker) and others I haven’t liked.
Unfortunately I didn’t love this, but it wasn’t bad either. The story is about Cassie, an alcoholic flight attendant who wakes up next to a murdered man. The problem is that she was so drunk the night before that she blacked out and has no memory of what happened.
She returns home and navigates through the fact that she lied to investigators and suspects someone is following her. She admits she’s a liar who drinks too much, but still makes the same mistakes over and over. Cassie is a very introspective character who underestimates her ability to change.
The odd thing about the story is that all of the action seems to pause until she travels to Rome with the airline she works for and is far from everyone she knows. Suddenly, everything floods her at once. It didn’t really make sense to me why the timeline worked the way it did. I can’t say too much without spoiling, but my theory of what was going to happen did happen…I just didn’t think it made complete sense with the timing.
Overall, it was a fun and easy read and I recommend it as a good book to read while traveling or during a reading slump because it’s really engaging and easy.
Why I gave this book 3/5 stars: Not the most likable characters, weird timing, convenient turns of events, not terribly original, but also easy to read and fast paced.