Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
+ Free Shipping
Circling the Sun: A Novel Paperback – May 31, 2016
|New from||Used from|
This month's Book With Buzz: "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng
From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture - perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. See more
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
An Amazon Best Book of July 2015: Sometimes a reader craves a good, old-fashioned yarn. This much anticipated novel from the author of The Paris Wife is exactly that: an engrossing story of love and adventure in colonial Africa, complete with gorgeous landscape, dissolute British ex-pats, and lots of derring-do with horses, motorcars and airplanes. That it is also the best kind of contemporary historical novel – the kind that teaches you something about the real people and events of the time – is a bonus. At the center of the novel is Beryl Markham (born – you gotta love it – Clutterbuck), the headstrong daughter of a British colonial who grew up more comfortable among the people and animals of her adopted Kenya than in the homes of its landed gentry. When Beryl’s mother leaves the family and her father gives up the farm, she marries (at 16) a gentleman farmer, a drunk too louche to be much of a husband. Like privileged but love-hungry teenage girls past and future, Beryl seeks companionship from her horses, becoming the first and greatest female horse trainer in the region. Along the way, she hobnobs with Kenyan high society, including, but not limited to, Karen Blixen (who authored her own epic story, Out of Africa, under the pen name Isaak Dinesen) and her lover Denys Finch Hatten (who will always be Robert Redford to those of us who watched him play the role in the movie version of Dinesen’s book.) Much bed-hopping and relationship-boundary-pushing ensue, with all the teeth-gnashing and yearning that goes along with it, no matter the era. Those who knew about Markham before reading this book may be surprised by how little there is about her as a pilot. She is, after all, the first woman to fly across the Atlantic from east to west, and she wrote her own memoir, 1942’s West with the Night; here, it is only in the book’s frame – a prologue and its final chapter – that we get a glimpse of the way that Beryl will, literally, soar. But McLain doesn’t seem interested in portraying her as a trailblazing feminist with an idea about changing the world; the Beryl Markham here is noteworthy precisely because she is NOT those things so much as a girl who grew up pushing back against conventions that got in her way. “But you’ve never been afraid of anything, have you?” Finch Hatten says to her in their last meeting. “I have, though,” she replies. “I’ve been terrified. . .I just haven’t let that stop me.” -- Sara Nelson--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
“Paula McLain is considered the new star of historical fiction, and for good reason. Fans of The Paris Wife will be captivated by Circling the Sun, which . . . is both beautifully written and utterly engrossing.”—Ann Patchett, Country Living
“Paula McLain cements herself as the writer of historical fictional memoir with Circling the Sun, giving vivid voice to Beryl Markham, a singular, extraordinary woman. In McLain’s confident hands, Markham crackles to life, and we readers truly understand what made a woman so far ahead of her time believe she had the power to soar.”—Jodi Picoult, author of Leaving Time
“Enchanting . . . A worthy heir to [Isak] Dinesen, McLain will keep you from eating, sleeping, or checking your e-mail—though you might put these pages down just long enough to order airplane tickets to Nairobi. . . . What’s certain is that the reluctantly earthbound armchair reader will cherish this gift for the hidden adventurer in all of us. Like Africa as it’s so gorgeously depicted here, this novel will never let you go.”—The Boston Globe
“Famed aviator Beryl Markham is a novelist’s dream. . . . [A] wonderful portrait of a complex woman who lived—defiantly—on her own terms.”—People (Book of the Week)
“Circling the Sun soars.”—Newsday
“Captivating . . . [an] irresistible novel.”—The Seattle Times
“Like its high-flying subject, Circling the Sun is audacious and glamorous and hard not to be drawn in by. Beryl Markham may have married more than once, but she was nobody’s wife.”—Entertainment Weekly
“[An] eloquent evocation of Beryl’s daring life.”—O: The Oprah Magazine
“Richly textured . . . Markham’s life is the stuff of legend. . . . McLain has created a voice that is lush and intricate to evoke a character who is enviably brave and independent.”—NPR
“Bold, absorbing fiction.”—New York Daily News
“Paula McLain has such a gift for bringing characters to life. I loved discovering the singular Beryl Markham, with all her strengths and passions and complexities, a woman who persistently broke the rules, despite the personal cost. She’s a rebel in her own time, and a heroine for ours.”—Jojo Moyes, author of Me Before You
“By the last pages, readers will hate to say goodbye to such an irresistible narrator.”—Miami Herald
“Paula McLain brings Beryl to glorious life, portraying a woman with a great many flaws that seem to result from her zest for life and inability to follow the roles expected of women in the 1920s and ’30s.”—St. Louis Post-Dispatch
“Amelia Earhart gets all the airtime, but this pilot had the juicier past. . . . McLain crafts a story readers won’t soon forget.”—Good Housekeeping
“With a sharp eye for detail and style to spare, Paula McLain captures the nuances of complex relationships, the rigidity of social conventions, and the wide skies and breathtaking vistas of Africa.”—Christina Baker Kline, author of Orphan Train
“Set in 1920s Kenya, this fictionalized history of the beautiful, high-flying aviator Beryl Markham is as luminous as its headstrong heroine. An exhilarating ride.”—Family Circle
“Paula McLain is yet another twenty-first-century woman who can write rings around the hyper-masculine men who dominate so much of American fiction.”—Liz Smith
“McLain’s skill at blending fact and fiction, which dazzled readers in The Paris Wife, is on full display. . . . Circling the Sun is a masterful story of hardship, courage and love.”—Shelf Awareness
From the Hardcover edition.
Top customer reviews
Beryl was born in England but brought to Kenya by her parents as a child. Abandoned by her mother who returns to England, Beryl grows up in a wild environment of Kenya, playing with the local natives. As she matures her unconventional upbringing and love of horses sets her on a path to become the first woman in Kenya to qualify as a horse trainer.
Financial and personal problems thrust Beryl into a loveless marriage and she only discovers herself when she is able to break out of that arrangement. This is all set amid the background of the frequently decadent life of English ex patriots living in Kenya in the 1920's. She meets with Karen Blixen (who as Isak Dinesen wrote the classic tale Out of Africa) and is attracted to Karen's lover, safari hunter Denys Finch Hatton, She not only discovers the personal love of her eventful life but also her long-term love for flying.
The book is set against the magnificent wild country of 1920's Africa, and the growth of Nairobi into a major city. It is a powerful and frequently emotional tale of historical fiction about an amazing independent woman who was really ahead of her time. This is an extraordinary story that I would strongly recommend to the most discerning reader of historical fiction.
Waxwings do not occur in Africa. Its unlikely a teenage girl would fit down a warthog burrow, let alone for three days. Owls do not have striped claws. These and other tiny slipups, while unimportant, do reveal a writer who has not had any in-depth involvement in Africa.
In her favour, however, the writing gets more real towards the end, and her treatment of the infamous Idina Hay and her sordid dinner parties is quite masterful.
Its not bad.. but it is more cheap romance than detailed historical memoir.
Beryl Markham grew up in the wilds of Kenya. She was a ruthless, spirited tomboy born at the turn of the 20th century. Her mother abandoned her at a young age, which greatly shaped the woman Beryl became. As she got older, she was able to cast off the expectations of society more so than most women to become a horse trainer and eventually a pilot.
If you've hear od Beryl Markham, it is probably because she was the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic. However, Circling the Sun focuses very little on her life in aviation and instead is more of a coming of age story. Beryl was married numerous times, but her one true love (at least as far as the book goes) is Denys Finch Hatton. Denys is a man that cannot be tamed, yet he and Beryl have an undeniable chemistry.
I realize that this review is all over the place, but it is difficult to succinctly put forth the type of woman Beryl was and how she lived. I will just say that I read this book for two reasons. 1. I loved The Paris Wife. 2. I had the opportunity to see Paula McLain speak earlier in the month. I wanted to read the book before I saw her, which incidentally, didn't happen because my kids were melting down that day. Anyway, I personally hadn't heard of Beryl Markham and I wasn't sure that growing up in Kenya was that interesting to me. It turns out, it was.
This was a gripping account and I loved the way McLain went about fictionalizing Beryl's early life.
The subject of her novel, Beryl Markham, was a most fascinating woman. I read her memoir "West with the Night" (which was first published in 1942) and feel that Paula McLain has captured the very essence of Beryl Markham. The novel is a joy to read, with the most beautiful descriptive passages not only of the amazing scenery, but of the characters and their thoughts. I was fascinated by the whole novel... the era, the setting, Beryl's highs and lows , her spirit , and her amazing achievements. I was also very interested in the research notes at the end of the novel, listing an amazing amount of material about the 1920's era in Kenya and other well known ex pats lifestyles.
I could not put this novel down...be sure to read it and marvel at this woman's life, her song should be "I Did it My Way". You may not agree with some of her life choices, but she did what she thought best, most of the time.
I've now ordered "The Paris Wife " and am sure it will be a very good read from this talented author.
Most recent customer reviews
It would be a wonderful read after "Out of Africa."