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This September Sun

3.46  ·  Rating details ·  130 ratings  ·  15 reviews
This September Sun won the Best First Book prize at the 2010 Zimbabwe Book Publishers' Association Awards. The book is a chronicle of the lives of two women, the romantic Evelyn and her granddaughter Ellie. Growing up in post-Independence Zimbabwe, Ellie yearns for a life beyond the confines of small town Bulawayo, a wish that eventually comes true when she moves to the Un ...more
ebook, 525 pages
Published January 14th 2015 by Amabooks (first published December 1st 2009)
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Average rating 3.46  · 
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A very slow moving story revolving around Ellie and her grandmother. In the first half, Ellie grows up in the new Zimbabwe. She is educated in England and returns to Zimbabwe when her Gran dies. The second half is a lot of diary and letters written by Gran and a couple of skeletons in the closet. Just did not grab me.
Jul 09, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I started reading this book somewhat skeptically - but I have to say that it is very well written and gives some very interesting insight to the changing face of Rhodesia and then Zimbabwe. Not only did her descriptions of Bulawayo bring the town to life in my mind, but I could see myself in the comments that she makes about young "modern" white Zimbabweans... certainly food for thought. ...more
Jan 01, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed references to Zimbabwe and Bulawayo in this book, as well as the chapter where Ellie, the main character, reflects on being a Zimbabwean abroad. The book is divided into two main parts, life in Zim, life in London. I preferred her first section, her coming of age and the stories of her grandmother. However, the diary entries are sometimes long, descriptive and only serve as a literary ruse to move the plot forward. I feel this book could have been a third shorter. However, there are so ...more
Mar 18, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-read
The main character turned from a miserable child to a miserable adult who needed a good kick up the back-side. Her grandmother's story was more interesting although she made some very dubious life choices. The changes in Zimbabwe since independence were skimmed over and the characters not very likeable so don't bother. ...more
Jan 25, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book and its evocations of Zimbabwe pre and post Independence. The book really took off for me half way through, I can't say why without spoiling it for others. Overall a wonderful description of the strong and loving relationship between a grandmother and her granddaughter (the author), also a strong and compelling love story however there were aspects that became apparent towards the end that it was more controlling and unequal than I had imagined. Sorry, difficult to wri ...more
Beautiful novel about growing up as a white Zimbabwean after independence, Bryony Rheam sketches a family tragedy with webs of lies, secrets and mysteries that slowly being discovered by Ellie, the protagonist.

Alison Smith
Because the novel is set in my old home town of Bulawayo, where I spent 31 years, I pounced on the book, but ... I enjoyed the nostalgia trip, familiar names, places, events. But the novel itself? theme is Family Secrets and their slow revelation. The author needed a good editor. The story was cumbersome, and there were too many revelatory diary sections. Nice try, BR.
Mar 09, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

رواية لطيفة عن تلك اللحظات اللامثالية في حياتنا ، بالنسبة لأحدهم قد تعني لحظة ندم بعد قول شيء تافه ، و لآخر ليست سوى لحظة صمت صاخبة
Carol Workman
A very slow read!
Jul 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book takes a little while to get to the meat of the story, but the first part, going through Ellie's early life and dropping clues about the grandmother's murder (not a spoiler, it's in the book blurb) is interesting in its own way and full of family drama that all starts to make much more sense as the story progresses.

As someone far away and disconnected from my own family and home country, I loved the way Bryony handles themes of going away and coming back and the way things change. This
Apr 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love the way books allow you to travel places you've never been to and most likely will never travel to. I enjoyed this trip to Zimbabwe with the company of two ladies, Ellie and her grandmother Evelyn. The story gave me a lot to think about. ...more
Cynthia Sillitoe
Dec 12, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well-written and interesting, but a little fragmented.
Aug 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: good
Very well written. The author introduced her book in person at the Zimbabwe Academy of Music in Bulawayo. Reminiscences and personal search of a young lady born and raised in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.
Apr 24, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not my type of read, I expected a little more
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  Kerine Wint is a software engineering graduate with more love for books than for computers. As an avid reader, writer, and fan of all things...
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