The Flying Inn

The Flying Inn

I just finished reading Flying Inn by G. K. Chesterton. This was a fun book, though it took me a while to get into it. I almost gave up a couple of times, the first few chapters were a bit slow. But I’m glad I plodded my way through them because the book picked up steam.

The premise is that Britain having made peace with Turkey, Islamophiles have taken control of British government and are working to outlaw alcohol. Because of an odd loophole in the law a British innkeeper and an Irish sea captain are now on the run, setting up shop and serving out rum in various places in a series of odd adventures.

This is the second Chesterton novel I’ve read. The other was The Man Who Was Thursday, which I also enjoyed. (I’ve also read through quite a few of the Father Brown mysteries.) But on the whole, so far I think I like Chesterton’s non-fiction better than his fiction.

I thoroughly enjoyed Orthodoxy, The Everlasting Man and the lives of St. Francis and St. Thomas Aquinas.  But I feel like his fiction is controlled by the ideas and he never really develops his characters into real people. Which is fine. That’s the kind of fiction he writes. And I do enjoy reading it. But it’s not my favorite kind of fiction. They aren’t the kind of novels that whick you away from your surroundings. They aern’t what I want to curl up with on a cold day or to while away a steamy summer afternoon. They are what I want to read in between those kinds of novels so I don’t get too soft in the head and too far away from reality.

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  • Just a question: Would not allowing children to read the books and hence not regarding them as children books make anything different? (It is more a theoretical/personal question rather than a “can we change the way society uses the books” question.) IOW, would not permitting children to read the books, at least not until a certain age, provide any redemption based on your post? I hope I was clear…I had trouble phrasing my question.