Like many Americans (I suspect), my introduction to Isak Dinesen was via the film version of Out of Africa. I actually never saw it until an adult, but my mother bought the film tie-in copy of Out of Africa and Shadows On the Grass which I read cover to cover two or three times in high school -- and my Dinesen obsession was born.This collection of eleven short stories has the feel of a 19th-century fairy tale collection; while reading, I found myself musing if these stories were the ones Karen recounted to Denys while they were in Kenya. Some were pure magic while others were meditations on religion, family, or obligation. There were delightful passages in every story, wryly funny and very true, such as:"Jensine would never have married a man whom she did not love; she held the god of love in great respect, and had already for some years sent a little daily prayer to him: "Why doest thou tarry?" But now she reflected that he had perhaps granted her prayer with vengeance, and that her books had given her but little information as to the real nature of love." (page 109, from "The Pearls")For those who are new to Dinesen, this is an excellent introduction as she is a writer of more than just memoir; those who have read Out of Africa have gotten a taste of the dreamy, meditative way she tackles life, and these stories are an extension of that.