Author: Paula McLain
Published by Ballantine Books on July 28, 2015
Genres: Historical Fiction
Book Rating: 8.5/10
Brought to Kenya from England as a child and then abandoned by her mother, Beryl is raised by both her father and the native Kipsigis tribe who share his estate. Her unconventional upbringing transforms Beryl into a bold young woman with a fierce love of all things wild and an inherent understanding of nature’s delicate balance. But even the wild child must grow up, and when everything Beryl knows and trusts dissolves, she is catapulted into a string of disastrous relationships.
Beryl forges her own path as a horse trainer, and her uncommon style attracts the eye of the Happy Valley set, a decadent, bohemian community of European expats who also live and love by their own set of rules. But it’s the ruggedly charismatic Denys Finch Hatton who ultimately helps Beryl navigate the uncharted territory of her own heart. The intensity of their love reveals Beryl’s truest self and her fate: to fly.
This was one of my book club reads for this month and I enjoyed it.
This is a story based on the real life of Beryl Markham.
Beryl was a strong, independent, remarkable women who was definitely ahead of her time. She accomplished some incredible things and had an indomitable spirit. At the same time, however, there always seemed be an aura of sadness surrounding her. She was constantly searching for true freedom and happiness, which she could never find. Her struggles with abandonment, loneliness, heartache and disappointment seemed to overshadow all the rest.
I have to admit that I knew very little of Beryl Markham before reading this book and I found it interesting and captivating right from the prologue.
The writing, itself, is poetic and flows from page-to-page effortlessly. And the imagery of colonial Kenya is beautiful and vivid.
This was a good choice for book club and I look forward to discussing it.