ThankYou Paula McLain and Net Galley for this free ARC to review
Paula McLain, author of the phenomenal New York Times bestseller The Paris Wife, takes readers into the glamorous and decadent circle of British expats living in Kenya in the 1920s. Circling the Sun tells the story of the beautiful young horse trainer, adventurer, and aviator Beryl Markham, from her childhood in British East Africa to her relationship with hunter Denys Finch Hatton and rivalry with Out of Africa author Karen Blixen—a notorious love triangle that changed the course of Beryl’s life.
There really is nothing wrong with the book, it’s well written and vivid. I just don’t like the protagonist. Her morals seem askew to me but not in a blatant way, she’s selfish and immature, and lacks any sense of compromise.I think I also may be a bit biased based on the fact that I read and fell in love with Out of Africa long before I read this so I don’t necessarily like some of the “weakness” Beryl perceives in Karen Blixen.
I really just didn’t like Beryl. I understand she had a different and somewhat difficult childhood, but she seems so immature and foolish the entire time. She doesn’t seem to learn from her mistakes and she takes what she has for granted.
All the pioneering she did – becoming the first licensed female trainer in the British Empire and eventually her piloting – she finds both large amounts of pride and a nonchalance in it, which I found infuriating, especially when she then looks down on other strong women because they still tie themselves to men. And for someone who complains about men so much she sure chases after quite a few of them.
Overall I don’t think I really liked this book that much. However, that was not by fault of the author by any means, it just wasn’t my cup of tea.