Captivating...[Pittard] brings her kaleidoscopic perspective to a catastrophe on an epic scale...With her keen eye for social markers and a deft weave of intersecting storylines, Pittard exposes social fissures and tensions over race and class, and how power and privilege play out in the shadows of grief.
— Los Angeles Times
Pittard’s novel combines a sense of personal loss and turmoil with greater societal change as the civil rights movement arrives at its peak.
— New York Times Book Review, a "New & Noteworthy" selection
Pittard’s earlier novels [...] established her as a formidable writer. The prose in Visible Empire [...] remains assured, polished, readable, and she renders a 1962 Atlanta that is vivid and just-enough interconnected. Ultimately, Pittard shoulders the burden of history with responsibility and resolve, and a brave imagination.
— Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Beautiful…In Pittard’s masterful hands, the intricately woven plots and personalities that make up Visible Empire are relatable and corporeal...Pittard’s command of voice is so dexterous and adroit…it takes an author of [her] caliber, finesse and nuance to articulate such a complicated place and time as Atlanta in the 1960s.
— ArtsATL
In the emotional aftermath of the June 1962 Paris plane crash that killed 120 of Atlanta’s leading citizens, a chorus of grieving survivors tell tales of love and loss, even as their city — often divided by class and race — seeks to cope with change and uncertainty.
— Minneapolis Star Tribune, "Summer Books"
Remarkable…There’s a really surprising range in the characters’ experiences and in what [Pittard] explores…Well-researched and deeply considered.
— Book Riot
VISIBLE EMPIRE is Hannah Pittard’s best book to date. Compelling, shocking, strong, and brave. Who should read this? Everyone, everyone.
— Helen Ellis, author of AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE
The historical event that sets Hannah Pittard’s novel Visible Empire in motion, the 1962 crash of Air France’s Flight 007 that killed over a hundred of Atlanta’s elite, is so catastrophic and wide-ranging its aftermath touches every sector of the city. It tells of a community altered by tragedy and of citizens brought together by calamity. But it is also about the disasters we cause and the wreckage we must sift through afterward in order to understand the more mysterious aspects of our hearts. For those who’ve been following Pittard since The Fates Will Find Their Way, it’s a thrilling book to read because it is to witness an important writer climb to new heights, and then soar.
— Adam Ross, editor of SEWANEE REVIEW
In VISIBLE EMPIRE, Hannah Pittard has written a work that is intricate, emotionally difficult and frequently moving. It’s a view of the past that tells us much of what we need to know about the present.
— Rion Amilcar Scott, author of INSURRECTIONS

An Indie Next List Pick
An Amazon Editors’ Pick for Summer Fictio
One of iBooks "Summer's Most Anticipated Books"
Belletrist Book Club's June Book of the Month
A New York Times Book Review “New & Noteworthy” Selection
An O, the Oprah Magazine "Top Book of Summer"
A Town & Country "Best Book to Read This June"
A Southern Living "Best New Book of Summer"
A Bitter Southerner “Upcoming Southern Novel We Can’t Wait to Read”
A Publisher’s Lunch “Highly Anticipated” Title

An epic novel—based on true events—of love, grief, race, and wealth, charting a single sweltering summer in Atlanta that left no one unchanged

On a humid summer day, the phones begin to ring: disaster has struck. Chateau de Sully, a Boeing 707 chartered to ferry home more than one hundred of Atlanta’s most prominent citizens from a European jaunt, crashed in Paris shortly after takeoff. It is the second-deadliest disaster in the history of aviation. Overnight, the city of Atlanta changes.

Left behind are children, spouses, lovers, and friends faced with renegotiating their lives. Robert, a newspaper editor, must decide if he can reconnect with his beloved but estranged wife, whose swindler parents have left her penniless. Nineteen-year-old Piedmont Dobbs, recently denied admission to an integrated school, senses a moment of uncertain opportunity. And Mayor Ivan Allen is tasked with the job of moving Atlanta forward—the hedonism of the 60s and the urgency of the Civil Rights movement at his city’s doorstep.

Visible Empire is the story of a husband and wife who can’t begin to understand each other until chaos drives them to clarity. It’s a story of the promise and hope that remain in the wake of crisis.

On June 3, 1962, a flight carrying more than 100 of Atlanta’s wealthiest residents crashed on takeoff from Paris. Pittard’s kaleidoscopic novel, a fictionalized account of that disaster and its aftermath, illuminates the personal and communal grief (and, in some cases, wicked delight) of those left behind.
— O Magazine, A Top Book of Summer
In 1962, Air France Flight 007 crashed upon takeoff and all 122 passengers—a group of prominent Atlanta citizens taking an inaugural jaunt on a route from Paris to Georgia—died. In this, the latest novel from Listen to Me author Hannah Pittard, that real-life crash kicks off a fictional series of events that changes a city and its people forever.
— Town & Country, "Best Books to Read This Summer"
A dizzying yet compelling, dramatic read...Pittard’s literary prowess is on full display through her ability to intermingle fact with fiction.
— Shelf Awareness, Maximum Shelf
This is highly charged writing, a gripping and satisfying story.
— Bobbie Ann Mason, author of THE GIRL IN THE BLUE BERET
Visible Empire starts out as an examination of a mass tragedy and slowly morphs into something more intimate and revelatory. Hannah Pittard’s novel is a deeply resonant portrait of individuals—and a city—in the throes of grief, and on the cusp of momentous change.
— Tom Perrotta, author of THE LEFTOVERS
Hannah Pittard knows that Faulkner was right: the past is never dead—it isn’t even past. In her stunning novel, Visible Empire, she brings harrowing incidents from l962 into the present with the vivid immediacy of a documentary film. Writing of love, family, race, devastating loss, redemption, riveting mysteries revealed, Pittard composes a grand symphony of profound incidents and passages of life—a compassionate, spellbinding novel.
— Howard Norman, author of NEXT LIFE MIGHT BE KINDER
Hannah Pittard is fast becoming one of the best writers of her generation, fusing the best aspects of literary and commercial fiction. Read her now, and thank me later.
— Tom Franklin, author of CROOKED LETTER, CROOKED LETTER
Atlanta native Pittard fills the novel with historical details, local points of reference, and distinct examinations of race and class...making it an evocative and discussion-worthy choice for readers who appreciate vivid settings.
— Booklist