In-Flight Entertainment (2012) Helen Simpson knows that people are selfish and delusional, but the reason her short-story collections are such a pleasure to glide through is that she… 2012-02-21 Short Stories Knopf
Book Review

In-Flight Entertainment (2012)

SKY HIGH British author Helen Simpson releases a clever and colorful collection of short stories
SKY HIGH British author Helen Simpson releases a clever and colorful collection of short stories
EW's GRADE
B+

Details Release Date: Feb 21, 2012; Writer: Helen Simpson; Genre: Short Stories; Publisher: Knopf

Helen Simpson knows that people are selfish and delusional, but the reason her short-story collections are such a pleasure to glide through is that she isn't a jerk about it. She's funny, shrewd, alternately wicked and warm — i.e., British. Global warming hangs over many of the stories in In-Flight Entertainment (not in an irritating way) and throws the characters' self-important rushing around into sad comic relief. In the title story, for instance, an elderly man dies during a flight, causing an unscheduled landing — and our main character's chief reaction is annoyance because he's going to be late for a presentation in Chicago. The obvious irony is that he, like all of us, has even less time than he thinks. B+

Originally posted Apr 04, 2012 Published in issue #1202 Apr 13, 2012 Order article reprints