In Flight
Book Topics
Philippines
student unrest
military dictatorships
Ferdinand Marcos
Imelda Marcos
refugees
outsourced labor
Manila
poverty
Filipino literature
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In Flight : Two Novels of The Philippines

An emotional exploration of the Philippines, these novels illustrate the connection between a people and their beloved native land. The first novel, Killing Time in a Warm Place, is based in part on the author's own experiences as a student protester and his subsequent capture, imprisonment, and torture during the Marcos dictatorship. His subsequent assimilation to a new society as a speechwriter for the government is depicted, followed by his self-imposed exile to the United States and his eventual return to the islands upon the death of his father, where he is forced to confront past betrayals. The second tale, Soledad's Sister, delves into the dark side of immigrant and outsourced labor that is endemic worldwide. Following the mysterious death of a young Filipina woman working as an au pair in Saudi Arabia, the narrative chronicles a local policeman's search to claim her body, locate her next of kin, and give her a proper burial in her native soil. With deep insight into contemporary Philippine culture, this collection captures a nation attempting to reinvent itself in the eyes of the world.
Book Topics
Philippines
student unrest
military dictatorships
Ferdinand Marcos
Imelda Marcos
refugees
outsourced labor
Manila
poverty
Filipino literature

Reviews and Comments

  • "Dalisay's two short novels, compiled into one volume and both set in his native Philippines, are full of evocative words and images,(and) rich, riveting detail.Combined, both will leave readers with a lingering, haunted feeling."
  • "Jose Dalisay is a truth-teller, and in these novels he tells stories concerning a part of the world about which most Americans are--unfortunately--ignorant. The stories grip the reader's attention from the outset, and like much great literature, they tell us about guilt, collaboration, and redemption."
    author of THE FEAST OF LOVE and GRYPHON: New and Selected Stories
  • "Rich with characters who are complex, deftly drawn and compelling. The U.S. reader is in for a treat."
    National Book Award Nominee, DOGEATERS
  • "Jose Dalisay is the unparalleled literary stylist from a lyrical country, the Philippines. Urbane, meticulous, compassionate, honest, Dalisay's work focuses on characters swept up in the tides of history -- a dictatorship, a scuppered revolution, needful exile, the inexorable losses of lives struggling quixotically for some semblance of purpose or even just happiness. In both books, the everyday details of humanity ground history and keep it from existing as facile absolutes -- an achievement of clarity and wisdom in the complex region that is Asia. Dalisay will bring you where you've never been before. Read these books."
    Winner of the Man Asian Award (2010) for ILUSTRADO
  • "'Tell us the truth!' we demand of a book, and this one does with calculated vivacity, spiked with galling humor, wit, and felicity of language that gives the Filipino novel a new stature."
    author, THE BAMBOO DANCERS
  • "Consummate craftsmanship characterized by clear and firm language, an absorbing narrative, and loving insights into the Filipino psyche. A sympathetic, contemporary record of our turbulent days."
    National Book Award Citation