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review 2019-02-21 14:22
West with the Night
West with the Night - Martha Gellhorn,Beryl Markham

I groped for lights, got into a dressing-gown, and let fly a few whispered maledictions aimed at the head of Bacchus. But what I saw before me, when I opened the door, was no reeling Blix, nor even a swaying one. I have seldom seen a man so sober. He was grim, he was pale, he was Death warmed over. He shook like a harpstring.

He said: “Beryl, I hated to do it, but I had to wake you. The head rolled eight feet from the body.”

There are various techniques for coping with people who say things like that. Possibly the most effective is to catch them just under the ear with a bronze book-end (preferably a cast of Rodin´s “Thinker”) and then scream – remembering always that the scream is secondary to the book-end.

 

West with the Night are Beryl Markham´s memoirs about her childhood in British East Africa up to the point of her solo flight across the Atlantic and as you might tell from the excerpt above, she sure knows how to write. Markham´s writing is stunning and beautiful and whether she described one of her flights across the African wilderness or a horse race, I felt like I was right there with her.

 

However, I had some problems with this memoir. The main one being that Markham doesn´t disclose a lot of personal feelings and thoughts. The whole book comprises of personal anecdotes about dogs, horse-breeding, hunting with the natives and of course flying, but most of the time she doesn´t tell the reader very much about her personal life and to be honest, I haven´t been particularly interested in the things she has experienced as a child.

 

Take the chapters about Bror von Blixen-Finecken. He and Beryl are working together and all of a sudden Beryl wants to go back to England. And Bror simply says okay. And then he goes with her. Not a single explanation why he is going with her, not a single word from Markham that these two might be more than colleagues (which I guess he is).

 

In the end, I didn´t get a feeling for this woman, simply because she kept me as a reader constantly at a distance.

 

I´m not well versed reading memoirs, so I might miss something in this one. I´m glad that I have read West with the Night, though, because it is well worth reading for the writing alone.

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review 2019-02-20 16:07
Slow beginning, mixed feelings for most of the story.
Taze: The Bad Boy Biker Next Door (Taze #1) - Eden West

For me, it took a long time to go anywhere. My feelings about Sylvia are mixed. She seemed to go from stay at home to wild quickly. I did feel sorry for her but felt she acted childish and selfish at times. Taze was a strong character with a softer side, doing what he needed to for personal reasons. I liked this second chance to find love for Sylvia and Taze, but I felt a little let down at the end. This was the first book I read by Eden West.

I received a copy through AXP, and this is my unsolicited review.

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text 2019-02-18 18:20
Reading progress update: I've read 114 out of 293 pages.
West with the Night - Martha Gellhorn,Beryl Markham

By then he understood, in his own way, that the girl loved him. Also he understood now why it was that when she had lain hurt in his box, he could not trample her with his hooves, not allow any other living thing to touch her - and the reason for this frightened him. 

 

Beryl Markham´s writing is stunning, but I find this chapter, in which she is psychoanalyzing a horse, incredibly dumb. 

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text 2019-02-17 16:36
Reading progress update: I've read 1 out of 293 pages.
West with the Night - Martha Gellhorn,Beryl Markham

How is it possible to bring order out of memory? I should like to begin at the beginning, patiently like a weaver at his loom. I should like to say, "This is the place to start; there can be no other."

But there are a hundred places to start for there are a hundred names - Mwanza, Serengetti, Nungwe, Molo, Nakuru. There are easily hundred names, and I can begin best by choosing one of them - not because it is first nor of any importance in a wildly adventurous sense, but because here it happens to be, turned uppermost in my logbook. After all, I am no weaver. Weavers create. This is remembrance - revisitation; and names are keys that open corridors no longer fresh in the mind, but nonetheless familiar in the heart.

 

I´m trying make an effort in reducing my TBR pile and this book has been sitting on my shelf for ages. And I feel now is the right time to dig into Beryl Markham´s life story.

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review 2019-02-10 19:46
Still a favorite series
West Coast Avengers (2018-) #7 - Kelly Thompson,Daniele Di Nicuolo,Eduard Petrovich

I think the Gwenpool/Kid Omega hookup has to be my favorite part of this.   Quire has a heart?   And it's fun to read about it!

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