West with the Night Author:Beryl Markham West with the Night is the story of Beryl Markham -- aviator, racehorse trainer, beauty -- and her life in the Kenya of the 1920s and '30s. — Markham is often described as "the first person" to fly the Atlantic east to west in a solo non-stop flight, though most now dispute this claim. When Markham decided to take on the Atla... more »ntic crossing, no pilot had yet flown non-stop from Europe to New York, and no woman had made the westward flight solo, though several had died trying. Markham hoped to claim both records. On September 4, 1936, she took off from Abingdon, England. After a 20-hour flight she crash-landed at Baleine Cove on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. In spite of falling short of her goal, Markham had become the first woman to cross the Atlantic east-to-west solo, and the first person to make it from England to North America non-stop. She was celebrated as an aviation pioneer. Markham chronicled her many adventures in her memoir, West with the Night, published in 1942. Despite strong reviews in the press, the book sold modestly, and then quickly went out of print. After living for many years in the United States, Markham moved back to Kenya in 1952, becoming for a time the most successful horse trainer in the country.« less
the most wonderful book I ever read! I love Africa, am a female private pilot and her words put other authors to shame. My husband, who seldom reads female authors, highly recommends this 5 star book to anyone who loves to read!
Beryl Markham writes beautifully, so well that it is like remembering something you had forgotten. She writes about Africa, horses and flying in a mostly non-technical way. It is filled with descriptive prose and philosophical musings. My favorite part: "No map I have flown with has ever been lost or thrown away. I have a trunk containing continents." I think her accounts are true, but at the end of the book you are not left a detailed timeline and an factual account of Africa as much as an impression of what Africa was like while she lived there. This is one of my favorite books.
This is perhaps my favorite book I've ever read. Plot-wise, it is the autobiography of a woman who grew up in East Africa in the early 20th century. It is marvelous -- the quote from Hemingway should sell it if we can't. There are some racist undertones that are probably appropriate for the time and place of this book, albeit shocking now.
Scholars debate whether this book was actually written by Hemingway himself. He was her lover, and so seldom praised other writers' works. Markham, after penning this masterpiece, never wrote anything else. The book does have a Hemingway flavor to it.
Ernest Hemingway himself praised this memoir as so well written: "She (Beryl Markham) can write rings around all of us who consider ourselves as writers." This is a stunning memoir of her life as an aviator in Africa. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
This memoir contains some of the most vivid writing about animals in the wild that I have ever read, anywhere, in 60+ years of reading. I loved the style, insights, narration and characterizations in this book, which recounts her growing up in East Africa, hunting with native and Indian men, learning to become a pilot and having various other adventures. Strongly recommended!
A book I adored in my childhood, still sweet and wonderful now that I'm thirty. Really naturally gifted author, amazing life-story. The treatment of race in the book raises ambiguous feelings in the reader.