The Last Flight Book Review

By Marian Kalika

March 18, 2024

The perplexing novel, The Last Flight, is a liberating story about the complexities of female friendship, the journey of hardships, and the power that women can still hold in a world designed for men.

This novel starts off by introducing the main character, Claire. For the majority of Claire's adult life, she has lived in the shadow of her husband. Defined only as the honorable wife of Rory Cook– a charitable political leader and inspiration. However, what goes on behind the scenes of this “perfect life” is not all that it has been made up to be. The relationship between Rory and Claire Cook is complex. In his own twisted way, Rory loved Claire. He loved that he could perfectly control her and use her to strengthen his image. Born into one of the most prominent political dynasties, Rory trapped Claire in the never-ending phycological and physical abuse that came as a package deal with their marriage. With her mother and only sister dead, Claire was under the impression that she had no one to rely on except her loyal friend Petra. After the swift introduction of Claire, the author begins to introduce the other main character, Eva. Coming from the foster system, Eva has never been able to experience the love and friendship she desperately craved until meeting Liz. Because of a troubling time in her early twenties, involving making drugs for her star quarterback boyfriend Wade, Eva got expelled and her chemistry scholarship revoked by the school board of Berkeley. Feeling like there was no other way to sustain herself, Eva got tangled up in a risky business of dealing drugs for Fish through her friend Dex. Attempting to escape from her imprisoning life, Eva made a thoughtful plan on how she could run away. 

The overall pacing of this novel slowly invites the reader into the personal lives of Claire and Petra. By revealing just enough, the story leads the reader along, leaving us questioning the character’s morals, thoughts, and actions. Aligning both women’s stories in the same book and switching the readers' perspectives chapter by chapter, ingeniously intertwined their journeys through the past and present. Claire’s journey guides us in the present, while Eva’s story reveals all events prior to these two women meeting. 

The major theme of this novel, female friendship, is personified through Liz and Petra. These empathetic strong women provided support while accompanying Claire and Eva through the turbulence and loneliness in their life. The confined world of Eva and Claire symbolizes the patriarchal culture, society, and system in which we live. 

Both women, running away from the abusive patterns in their life, become inevitably intertwined in this story of pure friendship. This empowering story is one of great valor, and would be recommended to anyone who enjoys an impactful but exhilarating story.