• Flying Solo

  • A Novel
  • By: Linda Holmes
  • Narrated by: Julia Whelan
  • Length: 8 hrs and 56 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (401 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A woman returns to her small Maine hometown, uncovering family secrets that take her on a journey of self-discovery and new love, in this warm and charming novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Evvie Drake Starts Over.

“Moving and tender . . . A perfect book for anyone who feels a little separate from the flock.”—Rebecca Serle, New York Times bestselling author of One Italian Summer

ONE OF THE MOST ANTICIPATED BOOKS OF 2022—BookPage

Smarting from her recently canceled wedding and about to turn forty, Laurie Sassalyn returns to her Maine hometown of Calcasset to handle the estate of her great-aunt Dot, a spirited adventurer who lived to be ninety-three. Alongside boxes of Polaroids and pottery, a mysterious wooden duck shows up at the bottom of a cedar chest. Laurie’s curiosity is piqued, especially after she finds a love letter to the never-married Dot that ends with the line “And anyway, if you’re ever desperate, there are always ducks, darling.”

Laurie is told that the duck has no financial value. But after it disappears under suspicious circumstances, she feels compelled to figure out why anyone would steal a wooden duck—and why Dot kept it hidden away in the first place. Suddenly Laurie finds herself swept up in a righteous caper that has her negotiating with antiques dealers and con artists, going on after-hours dates at the local library, and reconnecting with her oldest friend and her first love. Desperate to uncover her great-aunt’s secrets, Laurie must reckon with her own past and her future—and ultimately embrace her own vision of flying solo.

With a cast of unforgettable characters and a heroine you will root for from page one, Flying Solo is a wonderfully original story about growing up, coming home, and learning to make a life for yourself on your own terms.

©2022 Linda Holmes (P)2022 Random House Audio

What listeners say about Flying Solo

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Refreshingly smart, funny and heartfelt

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and it’s refreshing twist on some classic tropes of the romance genre. There’s a mystery to solve, a villain you love to hate, a delightful cast of side characters and a protagonist who is kind, funny, smart and fiercely independent. It is a joy to be along for the ride and root for Laurie. Rather than limit the concept of romance as only for marriage and kids, this story widens the scope to include more possibilities of what happy and healthy relationships could look like. As a woman in her thirties who isn’t sure if I want marriage or kids, but certainly want fulfilling romantic relationships, I felt seen. Thank you Linda Holmes!

4 people found this helpful

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  • BB
  • 06-16-22

Pretty great

I might slightly prefer her first book, but I love them both and could happily LIVE in the Linda Holmes literary universe (LHLU)….especially if narrated by Julia Whelan. Such a perfect pairing.
More, please.

4 people found this helpful

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Wonderful

Who doesn’t love a heist of a mysterious wooden duck? Also a sexy lived-in romance and a meditation on the joys of living by yourself and not having to compromise with anyone, which I felt very deeply. A full delight. Julia Whelan’s narration is spectacular as always

3 people found this helpful

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Great voice but boring plot

Loved the narrator but the plot was boring and lost me halfway. Couldn’t wait to finish it

2 people found this helpful

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Not worth the time

Boring, average, every day “romance” and not much of a caper. I hate to write that about someone’s work, but life’s too short.

1 person found this helpful

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Not this time

Loved Evvie Drake. This one crossed the line between charming and too cute. Maybe I wasn't in the right mood.

1 person found this helpful

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Just OK

I can see the message the author was trying to convey about the main character wanting to choose the life and type of relationship she really wants, rather than feeling it has to be all or nothing in terms of marry and have kids or stay perpetually single. The long winded explanations and defense the main character gave was a bit confusing and muddled at times, it was hard to follow and really root for what she wanted. I appreciate the attempt made, it just didn't grab and hold my heart and attention. The storylines were ok in the end.

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Great wooden duck decoy heist

I fell in love with Linda Holmes storytelling and characters when I read Evvie Drake Starts Over so I was rather excited to see that Flying Solo would be released this summer. I was quite sure this would be another fun read .. and right now I need fun light reads .. the world is crazy.

Laurie Sassalyn found herself returning to her hometown of Calcasset, Maine. This is where she grew up and fell in love with Nick. This is the town where Nick stayed to run the town library and Laurie left to seek an adventure job way over on the other side on the country in Seattle Washington. Now Laurie is back to take care of her great Aunt Dot’s estate, the aunt that was a schoolteacher, she was never married, she never wanted children but was quite the little adventurer that lived to be 90. As Laurie started going though closets, drawers, she found boxes of Polaroids and pottery and discovered hidden in the bottom of a cedar chest a mysterious wood duck decoy. Why was the wooden duck hidden? Was it worth something? And what did that love letter that Laurie find mean ..

“And anyway, if you’re ever desperate, there are always ducks, darling.”

Even the hired estate liquidator had his interest piqued only to find out the duck has no financial value .. but did it? It is the great wooden duck decoy heist in which she gets Nick, her best friend June, Nick’s grandmother and even her actor brother involved in investigating and solving. Was this storyline a little far fetch .. sure but it was inventive and just made me laugh.

Flying Solo is about coming to terms with your past, understand what your future holds and embracing your independence, second chance romances and re-discovering the love you once had, discovering family secrets but ultimately learning to love yourself and live on your term.

While Flying Solo did not live up to the Evvie Drake Starts Over standards it was delightful, charming and all the characters were wonderful .. and who doesn’t love a good wooden duck decoy heist.

This was an audiobook narrated by none other than the wonderful Julia Whelan

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SLOW

This book couldn’t end fast enough.. way too much unnecessary filler. The plot and love story was a snooze fest.

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Love this book!

I could really relate to the characters and loved the ending. I will be looking for this writer again in the future.