copyright 1977; Delacorte Press, New York; hardbound with green boards; Book Club Edition; excellent condition of book - appears unread; dust jacket in good condition; see pics.
In the Sonoran Desert, French scientist Claude Lacombe and his American interpreter, cartographer David Laughlin, along with other government scientific researchers, discover Flight 19, a squadron of Grumman TBM Avengers that went missing more than 30 years earlier. The planes are intact and operational, but there is no sign of the pilots. An old man who witnessed the event claimed "the sun came out at night, and sang to him." At an air traffic control center in Indianapolis, a controller listens as two airline flights narrowly avoid a mid-air collision with an unidentified flying object (UFO), which neither pilot chooses to report, even when invited to do so. In Muncie, Indiana, 3-year-old Barry Guiler is awakened in the night when his toys start operating on their own. Fascinated, he gets out of bed and discovers something or someone (off-screen) in the kitchen. He runs outside, forcing his mother, Jillian, to chase after him.
Investigating one of a series of large-scale power outages, Indiana electrical lineman Roy Neary experiences a close encounter with a UFO, when it flies over his truck and lightly burns the side of his face with its bright lights.