This was an emergency purchase in the Minneapolis airport last week. I was changing planes there (en route to Portland) and realized too late that I had forgotten my book on the first plane. But hooray: A kiosk selling paperbacks was right across from my gate.
I grabbed Fearless Fourteen by Janet Evanovich, the only thing that looked even halfway palatable. It's nearly a four-hour flight from Minneapolis to Portland. Without a book I'd have been crawling out onto the wing before I got there.
And this book is surprisingly good. Evanovich usually sacrifices plot for laughs, but in this she balances the two fairly well. It actually has a somewhat interesting mystery, and the solution is plausible. I would call this a well-modulated effort, and certainly good enough for an airplane read. You do need some familiarity with the setup and the characters in order to get the most out of it, but I can't imagine anyone would try this who hadn't at least read a few of Evanovich's previous numerical endeavors.
The book I lost was Ysabel by Guy Gavriel Kay. I wasn't particularly enjoying it. I wonder if I lost it subconsciously on purpose. That's still kind of dumb because I'm going to have to pay the library for it.
Portland was great. I visited Powell's, mecca for all serious book lovers, and was suitably impressed. I was pretty restrained and only bought three books. I could have bought 20 but I didn't have room in my suitcase. I did make sure I put all three in my carry-on bag for the return flight. I was taking no chances on a bookless flight home.
Becky Holmes blogs about books at A Book A Week.