Book Review-Circling the Sun

Another semi-biographical fiction read by Paula McLain, this one explores the very unusual life of Beryl Markham, the first woman to cross the Atlantic solo, flying from England to Nova Scotia. 

I was reading this during a very busy time, and it took me longer than usual to get through it. It isn’t a thrilling page turner, but chronicles real life, which has its moments of drama, but  is often just the daily routine. Some people would find that boring, but I am intrigued to learn about how others lived, even during the ordinary times. Maybe because I grew up in a dairy farm, where the goal is to keep every day the same…calm cows are happy cows, you see.

What kept me reading? I had never read about colonial Africa, and most of the book is set in colonial Kenya in the 10’s through 30’s. Having little knowledge about this part of the world or this portion of it’s history, my brain just filled up with the descriptions of the life and the countryside. It sounds like scandal followed this woman everywhere, though the author kept the details to a low roar. Considering the era, this lady had some trouble with propriety, or maybe her childhood rendered her immune, it’s hard to say, but sometimes I caught myself wondering what could she be thinking?!!??

This book is probably not for anyone looking for a light, fun read. It chronicles real life, and this life was quite human. However, if you are interested in learning about a different time, a very different world, or a lady that breaks the mold society expected, it is an intriguing read.

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