Last month I finally achieved my goal and attended my very first book club meeting!
This month at the club we will be discussing “Circling the Sun”, written by Paula McLain and published by Ballantine Books in 2015.
The book is a fiction book but it’s written about a true character, Beryl Markham which can be a difficult undertaking for any author.
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Circling the Sun
The book follows the story of Beryl’s life beginning with her family’s move from England to Kenya in 1904. A move that her mother could never adapt to which led to her taking Beryl’s brother, Dickie and returning to England after only two years in Kenya, leaving behind four-year-old Beryl.
This shaped much of the rest of her life as she was left to grow up with her father in the wilds of Africa helping him to raise and train racehorses. Her father was assisted in raising Beryl by the Kipsigis tribe who lived on her father’s land. This unconventional combination contributed to her growing up to be a fiercely independent and somewhat defiant young woman.
Throughout Beryl’s life, she followed the beat of a different drummer and many of her actions weren’t what was considered to be acceptable for women of that time period. Because of this and some of the decisions she made her life was filled with scandal and gossip more often than not. But it was also filled with undeniable achievements including not only her talent at training racehorses but her talent as a pilot as well.
Beryl was in love with Denys Finch Hatton for much of her life, but this was a love that was complicated by his attraction to both Beryl and a mutual friend, Karen. It was made even more complicated by his desire to live a life that belonged to no one but himself.Looking for a good read? Circling the Sun by Paula McLain is the story of a very unconventional young woman growing up in Kenya & destined to live a life of both scandal and achievements. Click To Tweet
I enjoyed the book very much, it kept my attention from beginning to end. However, I never became attached to the main character, Beryl. Some of her decisions did seem to me to be made without any consideration of the others whose lives would be affected by them.
I often wondered while reading the book how accurate the depiction of Beryl was, but after reading the author’s note I feel that she become so involved with studying the character that I consider her depiction to be accurate.
The book was very well written and I recommend it.
Have you read Circling the Sun? If so, what are your thoughts?
This book can be purchased on Amazon:
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