Selected by the Modern Library as one of the 100 best nonfiction books of all time
In this book, the author of "Seven Gothic Tales" gives a true account of her life on her plantation in Kenya. She tells with classic simplicity of the ways of the country and the natives: of the beauty of the Ngong Hills and coffee trees in blossom: of her guests, from the Prince of Wales to Knudsen, the old charcoal burner, who visited her: of primitive festivals: of big game that were her near neighbors--lions, rhinos, elephants, zebras, buffaloes--and of Lulu, the little gazelle who came to live with her, unbelievably ladylike and beautiful.
The Random House colophon made its debut in February 1927 on the cover of a little pamphlet called "Announcement Number One." Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer, the company's founders, had acquired the Modern Library from publishers Boni and Liveright two years earlier. One day, their friend the illustrator Rockwell Kent stopped by their office. Cerf later recalled, "Rockwell was sitting at my desk facing Donald, and we were talking about doing a few books on the side, when suddenly I got an inspiration and said, 'I've got the name for our publishing house. We just said we were go-ing to publish a few books on the side at random. Let's call it Random House.' Donald liked the idea, and Rockwell Kent said, 'That's a great name. I'll draw your trademark.' So, sitting at my desk, he took a piece of paper and in five minutes drew Random House, which has been our colophon ever since." Throughout the years, the mission of Random House has remained consistent: to publish books of the highest quality, at random. We are proud to continue this tradition today.
This edition is set from the first American edition of 1937 and commemorates the seventy-fifth anniversary of Random House.
About the Author
Karen von Blixen-Finecke, also known by her nom de plume, Isak Dinesen, was born in Denmark in 1885. Dinesen is widely known for her 1937 memoir, Out of Africa, which was later adapted into an Academy Award-winning film starring Meryl Streep. Dinesen spent much of her early life at her mother's estate in Horsens, but was no stranger to travelling, as she studied art in Rome, Paris, and Copenhagen. In 1914, Dinesen and her fianc?e, Baron Bror von Blixen-Finecke, moved to Kenya to manage a coffee plantation. After divorcing in 1925, Dinesen lived briefly with the aristocratic big-game hunter Denys Finch-Hatton, who led safaris for wealthy visitors. After his death and the shutdown of the coffee plantation due to a global economic decline, Dinesen returned to Denmark and immersed herself in her writing, publishing Out of Africa shortly after. Dinesen died in 1962.