Thursday, February 12, 2015

Leaving Before the Rains Come

I don’t know how I discovered Don’t Lets Go to the Dog’s Tonight
more than 12 years ago, but Alexandra Fuller’s first memoir of her life growing up in Africa has since been on my mind. I felt like I was there, to see, smell and feel Africa, even though I have never been. Finally, I was rewarded with a sequel called Leaving Before the Rains Come. Her later years of marriage and a big move to the United States. It is filled with pregnancies, children and building a house and life in Wyoming. The marriage crumbles and Alexandra cannot let go of her childhood home and the piece of her heart that has always remained on another continent.

Alexandra Fuller is a smart, passionate writer. She brings the reader deep into her soul to share her experiences to the fullest. The good and the bad, the ugly and the beautiful. Maybe some of her story, her reminiscing and longing for childhood is common for us all, hers being more exotic having grown up in a world full of chaos and nature and lots of near fatal emergencies involving elephants and storms and war. But at the heart of all matters, her story is that of a woman, in the middle of her life wondering where her younger self has gone off to and she will do anything to catch even a glimpse of her old self to prove that yes, she truly existed. She yearns to know what is to come next.

Leaving Before the Rains Come is beautifully written, it is funny and sad and true. I highly recommend this extraordinary memoir. If you missed her other memoir (Don’t Let’s Go to the Dog’s Tonight) I would read that one first. Both on the top of my list!

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