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Adult Book Club: Flight Path: A Search for Roots Beneath the World’s Busiest Airport

  • Hooray for Books! 1555 King Street Alexandria, VA, 22314 United States (map)

Join us the first Wednesday of each month at 7 p.m. to discuss compelling books of all genres. Books purchased for our book clubs are always 20% off. Please email Sally Chadbourn for more information and to join.

This month we are reading Flight Path: A Search for Roots Beneath the World’s Busiest Airport by Hannah Palmer, A first-time author’s engaging memoir looks at neighborhoods around the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport to show how the construction and expansion overran her childhood homes with dismal architecture absorbing rural streets.



In the months leading up to the birth of her first child, Hannah Palmer discovers that all three of her childhood houses have been wiped out by the expansion of Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. Having uprooted herself from a promising career in publishing in her adopted Brooklyn, Palmer embarks on a quest to determine the fate of her lost homes--and of a community that has been erased by unchecked Southern progress. Palmer's journey takes her from the ruins of kudzu-covered, airport-owned ghost towns to carefully preserved cemeteries wedged between the runways; into awkward confrontations with airport planners, developers, and even her own parents. Along the way, Palmer becomes an amateur detective, an urban historian, and a mother. Lyrically chronicling the overlooked devastation and beauty along the airport's fringe communities in the tradition of John Jeremiah Sullivan and Leslie Jamison, Palmer unearths the startling narratives about race, power, and place that continue to shape American cities. Part memoir, part urban history, Flight Path: A Search for Roots beneath the World's Busiest Airport is a riveting account of one young mother's attempt at making a home where there's little home left.