COLLISION

BY SPENCER DUNMORE

“Suddenly the barometric pressure soared. As if someone had pressed a button, the winds abruptly shifted. Hail thrashed the earth, and the sky became a battleground . . .”

Three aircraft enter the turbulence over Toronto simultaneously: a charter Boeing 707, on its way from Gander; a Douglas DC-8 coming in from L.A.; and a lightweight Aeronca flown by an inexperienced trainee pilot Henry Peel.

Are the weather conditions the cause of the catastrophe to come, or does the blame rest with the Boeing pilot Beatty who lies to his doctor so that he can go on flying? Or with Vaughan at the controls of the DC-8, obsessed by the memory of his adulterous love for Lee — is Vaughan fit to fly?

Three aircraft enter the storm zone over Toronto — and the tension is devastating. More tense and vivid than Bomb Run, more powerful than The Last Hill, this is Spencer Dunmore's most ambitious novel to date, a novel about planes and people — pilots, passengers and crew, wives who wait and wonder — all under pressure, the incessant pressure, that forces them to the point of collision.