30 Days of Books – Day 06

6 Nov

A book that makes you sad

Previously: A book that makes you happy

Many books make me sad and happy at the same time or at least throughout the entire journey but finding one that makes me really sad was a bit difficult. I decided on ‘Out of Africa’ by Tania Blixen but I could have also gone with ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’. I think that Out of Africa is sadder though.

Many bibliophile people know this story already which was made famous by the movie starring Robert Redford and (Queen) Meryl Streep in 1985.

 

Even the beginning of the story is famous and quite beautiful:

I had a farm in Africa at the foot of the Ngong Hills. The Equator runs across these highlands, a hundred miles to the north, and the farm lay at an altitude of over six thousand feet. In the day-time you felt that you had got high up; near to the sun, but the early mornings and evenings were limpid and restful, and the nights were cold.

It’s a memoir of Tania Blixen who moved from Denmark to Africa in the early 1900s with her husband, a danish Baron, to operate a tabac farm. Their marriage is not the best and Tania tries to build herself a life outside of it, being a nurse to the children and the workers of the farm. Over time she falls in love with Denys Finch Hatton a european fellow who is quite adventurous.

This novel is a testament of Blixen’s love for Africa and it was so, so sad when she had to leave Africa to return to Denmark. Her marriage failed, her lover gone and childless. Blixen was a very independent woman and she writes really beautifully.

I prefer the book over the movie anytime but then again it’s with Meryl Streep so it’s not bad at all. It just didn’t convey as much emotion as the written words did.

Next: Most underrated book

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