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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Sparrow's Flight by Sam Kepfield

Sparrow's Flight by Sam Kepfield
Publisher: Clio - Imprint of Musa Publishing
Genre: Historical
Length: Short Story (52 pages)
Heat Level: Sweet
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Orchid

Journey to a strange land -- America.

The launch was nothing, compared to the landing

A Russian Cosmonaut, codename Sparrow, crashes in the Kansas milo fields during the early days of space travel. Ex-army and local farmer, Will Keller, rushes to help the crashed pilot and finds a figure in a spacesuit strapped to an ejector seat. An attempt to assess the injuries reveals the space pilot is a woman.

More concerned with the woman's health than the fact she's Russian, Will takes her to his farm. Too bruised and injured to escape, the woman recovers over the ensuing days and reveals her name is Natalya. The days pass and Natalya discovers America is not as her teachers have led her to believe.

Will and Natalya have a growing attraction to one another but know there's no future for them. Natalya must return to Russia while Will needs a life free of complications. Neither wants to address why they have not gotten in touch with their respective governments to arrange Sparrow's return to Russia.

Set in the early 1960s, "Sparrow's Flight" brings together two people from opposite streams of life. It presents the world from their point of view rather than the historical side. Will's patriotic duty vies with his longing to do right by the woman who has literally landed on his farm and crept into his heart. Natalya is enthralled by the clothes, food and way of life in America and has difficulty aligning what she sees with the Russian version of life in the USA. Will is kind and protective, unlike any man she's ever met in her homeland.

The story has no electrifying moments, but is a good portrayal of the world of the early 1960s as seen through the eyes of individuals. There was a distinct lack of tension in the interaction between the main characters. The circumstances surrounding their meeting sounded matter of fact rather than exciting. The possibility was there but the characters rationalized everything so the tension was removed.

"Sparrow's Flight" is well written and pleasant to read, and the author has done his research well and is to be commended for this. He provides an unusual approach to historical events and although not startling, it's a good book to while away an afternoon.