Taking up where Flambards (1968, p. 1227, J-481) abruptly left
them, lover-cousins Will and Christina land in Aunt Grace's London
flat after their Rolls-Royce escape from home. What worked in the
romantic, countrified scene of the first book is lost in this
flight into "reality": he's eighteen now with a bum leg, an adept
pilot seeking a chance to prove it; she's a year younger, orphaned,
and anxious to support herself until they are both 21 and exempted
from Will's father's custody (it's 1912). The story accelerates as
everything is put aright, job-wise, money-wise, love-wise, and
finally marriage-wise; its sole sustaining conflict is Christina's
heart-in-mouth terror of flying counterposed to Will's insistence
that she be brave and tearless. Flambards is safer territory for
all concerned - The Edge of the Cloud a precarious place indeed.
Christina and Will have escaped Flambards for London with their
heads full of dreams, only to find a whole new set of problems. Not
only the basic ones of work and a place to live, but Will's
single-minded ambition to desing and pilot flying machines, which
terrify Christina every time he leaves the ground. Will is certain
he can become a success, but what price is he willing to pay for
the glory? A Carnegie Medal winner in 1969, this novel is now
reissued in a smaller format mass-market paperback.
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