Monday, 8 September 2008

No Highway by Nevil Shute

How is it that a book published 60 years ago can still be timely?
The issue of aircraft safety comes to light with every flight incident that hits the news headlines. In this novel, Mr. Shute considers the potential of metal fatigue due to various flight stresses. When Mr. Honey's research first comes to the attention of Mr. Scott, his manager, it is met with scepticism. While further explanation brings Mr. Scott round to his way of understanding, he experiences this disbelief with each person to whom he presents his thesis.
History has shown that this is often the case with new ideas/research.
One of my favourite passages in the novel is when the actress Monica Teasdale is reflecting upon her life. In retrospect, she very clearly realizes who the most important people have been. It's not her "movie" people as you might expect. I can only hope that I view my life and relationships with such clarity.
I feel that this novel should still have a broad audience including historians, those with and interest in aeronautics and sociology.
I have read several books by Mr. Shute and each has been as gripping as the previous. If you are interested in learning more about this author, please visit the Nevil Shute Norway Foundation.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Heather,

Very glad to come across your book review. In fact I am at this point actually reading thru No Highway myself. Not the first time though.. the nth time. Its as always elegantly written and very pleasant to read. And yes.. in true Shute style as well.. with a typical everyday person.. being the central character.

Happy reading.. I just picked up a few more Shutes..(Lonely Road, Old Captivity among others).