Playing catch-up on some of my overlooked Hemingway reads. To Have and Have Not is quick and worthwhile. A classic example of the use of dialogue as the story telling vehicle. Set in the Florida Keys and Cuba, so much a part of the Hemingway lifestyle. Little wonder he tells the story so well. Smuggling is not a good business or a lifestyle with a future. Few happy endings.
Enjoy this short fiction. No more than a lengthy one or two sitting read.
Search gordonsgoodreads for other Hemingway classics. It is the most sought after subject on this blog.
The original A Moveable Feast, among Ernest Hemingway’s most beloved works, was originally published posthumously in 1964. The Memoir is of the author’s life in Paris as a struggling writer, newlywed and young father between 1920 and 1926.
A Moveable Feast The Restored Edition with a forward by Hemingway’s only living son Patrick Hemingway and edited by his grandson Sean Hemingway presents the original A Moveable Feast manuscript exactly as Hemingway intended. A major difference is the exclusion from The Restored Edition of the influence that Hemingway’s fourth wife Mary had upon the original publication in 1964.
Of great significance from this reading is Hemingway’s agony over his leaving Hadley for Pauline.
” Any blame in that was mine to take and posses and understand. The only one, Hadley, who had no possible blame, ever, came well out of it finally and married a much finer man than I ever was or could hope to be and is happy and deserves it and that was one good and lasting thing that came from that year.”
Whether or not you have read the original I commend to you A Moveable Feast The Restored Edition. It it wonderful to be in Paris with Ernest and Hadley, to be young, carefree, tasting the food, wine and life itself.
” Lets walk down the rue d Seine and look in all the galleries and in the windows of the shops. We can stop at a new cafe where we don’t know anyone and nobody knows us and have a drink. We can have two drinks. We’ll come home and eat here and have a lovely meal and drink and afterwards we’ll read and go to bed and make love.”
Writing, wonderful writing, every word framing a picture, painting or memory. There is never enough Hemingway. The Restored Edition is worth the time. Do it again, or for the first time!
Amor Towles debut novel Rules of Civility captures the rules of New York and places George Washington’s 110 Rules of Civility in the Appendix where they rightfully belong! This read is a love relationship with New York, a city that authors its own rules!
What could be more compelling? The earnest daughter of hard-working Russian immigrants born and raised on the Lower East Side. A near-do-well wanna-be who will do anything to be accepted and regain lost riches. A sweet and adventurous mid-western transplant. The swells of the Upper East Side trust fund gang, a hard charging publisher and of course “ladies who lunch .” The players are all there and their personalities explode in a wonderful page-turning story set in the post depression era of the late 1930s. New York is bouncing back, regaining its lost energy, wealth, world status and rebuilding with money, music, bricks, mortar and unlimited opportunity for those willing to dare a ride on a rainbow.
The book’s intimacy with New York is reminicent of Pete Hamill’s Downtown and Tabloid City. There is a hint of F. Scott Fitzgerald and even a flash of Hemingway. ” By nine o-clock the restaurant would feel like the center of the universe.” The 21 Club, the village jazz clubs before red velvet rope lines, the big bands, the after swing parties and the glorious and transparent lives of trust fund swells of the Upper East Side and Oyster Bay. Towles builds characters who are looking out, looking in and some who don’t give a damn about all the action swirling around them. Falling in and out of love with intimacy left to the imigination.
Rules of Civility is a New Yorker’s book but just like the city, it is there for the enjoyment of anyone willing to seize the moment. This is a very, very good first novel which may well have a movie running through its veins.
Simply said, enjoy!