Circling the Sun by Paula McLain
This book will keep anyone who is interested in colonialism, race-horse training, flight history and/or the rise of women’s assertiveness reading. Ms. McLain has fictionalized the biography of Beryl Markham, of “Out of Africa” fame into a real page-turner.
Beryl Clutterbuck’s family migrated to colonial Kenya from England in 1904 when she was the young age of 3. Two years later Beryl’s father, Charles, a race-horse trainer began teaching her the art. This became their connection to each other through their love of horses. She learned the business to be near her father after her mother and brother’s defection back to England.
The Kenyan natives, its natural beauty and their influence on her life along with being hurried into a marriage as a teen spurred Beryl’s maturation. Friendships with Denys Fitch Hatton, Karen Blixen and other ex-patriots introduced her to the decadence of colonial society.
Beryl’s solo west to east flight across the Atlantic Ocean in 1936 has gone unheralded for the most part and it is not the end of the story.
This volume is available at local libraries and recommended by our Library committee.