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Circling the Sun
An intoxicatingly vivid portrait of colonial Kenya and its privileged...
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Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

Created: 08/26/16

Replies: 15

Posted Aug. 26, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1358

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Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun? Does it bring to mind a particular moment from the novel or an aspect of Beryl's character?


Posted Aug. 31, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
dorinned

Join Date: 10/13/14

Posts: 35

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

I thought the title might refer to the sunny desert climate in Africa, to which Beryl kept returning all her life. Or it might have referred to her long-distance flying missions later on.


Posted Sep. 01, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
barbarar

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 3

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

After Denys's death, Beryl says in reference to Karen and herself, "We had both tried for the sun, and had fallen, lurching to earth again, tasting melted wax and sorrow. Denys wasn't hers, or mine" Maybe in her relationship with Denys, she spent a lot of her life circling that sun.


Posted Sep. 01, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
vickic

Join Date: 09/15/14

Posts: 24

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

I think it was at least a twofold decision. Certainly McClain talks about Denys as the 'sun' in her life as well as Karen's. In addition, I think it was appropriately representative of the life of Beryl in general. She was always seeming to get so close to 'melting her wings' as a result of the decisions and subsequent actions in her life whether her choices with men or adventure.


Posted Sep. 01, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
judyh

Join Date: 01/26/16

Posts: 20

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

I think it is a reference to flying too close to the sun. She took many risks during her life with her professional and personal choices, but she lived a long life. So, she circled the sun, but did not fly so close as too actually lose her life.


Posted Sep. 01, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
nancyn

Join Date: 05/12/16

Posts: 4

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

I think Beryl thought of herself as the sun - everything revolves around her just as the sun is the center of the solar system.


Posted Sep. 01, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
melanieb

Join Date: 08/30/14

Posts: 86

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RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

The title is a reminder of the adage that if you fly too close to the sun you can will get burned. Beryl circles the sun, taking risks and she has challenges in her life that bring her precariously close to ruin but she is not destroyed.


Posted Sep. 05, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
lorrainep

Join Date: 07/13/16

Posts: 26

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

Melanie, I agree with you. But I'll take it one step more, I believe she was continuously burned but she kept circling and kept getting burned


Posted Sep. 10, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
barbm

Join Date: 02/04/16

Posts: 73

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RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

I think it can be interpreted on several levels, just as Beryl herself was multi-dimensional. Flying too close to the sun....Denys was her sun...her source of life...taking flight across the atlantic...loving your good friend's lover. So many perspectives, that's what I enjoyed most!


Posted Sep. 15, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
tracyb

Join Date: 09/22/11

Posts: 66

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RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

Add to all the above just the nature of Africa, heat, dry the floods of rain that added a certain danger & loss of control to ones life. Like the Phoenix she was nearly destroyed, but with the heat 'of the sun' and her determination not to give up she came to life & shined brighter.


Posted Sep. 16, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
amandaa

Join Date: 07/15/16

Posts: 7

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

I thought of it as a reference to Beryl's wide open approach to life.


Posted Sep. 17, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
julianna

Join Date: 10/10/13

Posts: 29

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

I agree with all the comments. My thought about circling the sun was that it referred to her quest for love and happiness no matter the risks. Not sure she ever found both.


Posted Sep. 19, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
lindac

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 3

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

The sun as the source of warmth and light, was Beryl's approach to life, always looking for better survival, better relationships and better adventures. However, she often got too close and got burned!


Posted Sep. 20, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
rosemaryk

Join Date: 08/29/11

Posts: 36

RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

Beryl seemed to thrive on living dangerously. That was the free spirit in her. Yet, as others have pointed out, she managed to pull back just enough to avoid permanent injury.

She loved to be daring: so much of her work with horses involved taking chances; certainly her affair with Denys flaunted safe measures; learning to fly a plane--quite outrageous for a woman to consider in those days--provided even more thrills for Beryl.

The humdrum life was not for her!


Posted Sep. 20, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
barb23703

Join Date: 10/04/15

Posts: 53

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RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

So many choices for this one, but I tend to think of Beryl as getting burned by the sun each time she circled a relationship that might bring her love and happiness.


Posted Sep. 21, 2016 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
annar

Join Date: 06/13/11

Posts: 57

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RE: Why do you think the author chose the title Circling the Sun?

My book club discussed this book recently. Many of us were confused by the title. We wondered if it referred to her flying or to the sun being Denys. I like some of the other replies to this question.


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