Dear Readers: I just read Night at Key West and it was truly great fun. It takes place in Key West in the Thirties when our main character, Simon, dispatches to Key West to solve a disappearance that becomes a murder investigation. I saw Simon as a bit of an Aaron Hotchner sidekick and a Nick Adams sort of reporter of the odd events around him. It is really a kick and Hemingway features prominently. Below is my review on Amazon and link.
I just finished reading Murder in Key West by Craig A. Hart and I enjoyed it immensely. I initially read it because Hemingway is a main fictionalized but based on reality character, and I read almost everything Hemingway-related. However, the book was wonderfully involving, funny, fun, and yes, a real mystery to figure out with trips and twists at most page turns. There’s enough Hemingway for old hands to enjoy with inside jokes about the pool in Key West and Scott Fitzgerald’s editing of The Sun Also Rises as well as fun anecdotes for readers who know nothing about Hemingway.
The writing itself is terrific. I laughed at some of the funny phrases such as “largely ineffectual energy” and “like a chihuahua watchdog” and i really enjoyed the sense of Key West in the 1930s and the small town characters at the courthouse, the police station, and the diner. It was a fun Sam Spade mystery, not too heavy (Simon the narrator is a bit of a Nick Adams persona) and I highly recommend it to mystery readers, lovers of fiction set in the ‘30s, and Hemingway fans. Great fun and good writing in one delightful package.
I finished reading Paula McLain’s new novel called Love and Ruin: A Novel.It’s the story of Martha Gellhorn, Hemingway’s third wife, and begins in 1937 when she is struggling to become a war journalist – which for a woman in those days was a formidable challenge – and her meeting fortuitously or unfortunately depending upon how you look at it with Ernest Hemingway.
I enjoyed it, and to tell you the truth, I wasn’t expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. For starters, I know too much about all of this. Second, I didn’t love The Paris Wife.
Love and Ruinfocused a great deal on the Spanish Civil War and that may become tedious for some readers. However, it truly was extraordinary that Martha Gellhorn was able to cover those sorts of stories. I didn’t feel that Paula McLain portrayed Hemingway as a villain. Since the book stopped at the end of the marriage to Hemingway while giving a wrap up, I will let all of you read more about Martha and come to your own conclusions about her. She was an extraordinary woman and while Hemingway definitely wanted her in his life more as a wife than as an independent journalist, the association was definitely beneficial to her.
I very much enjoyed the portions of the book about Martha’s discovery of the Finca Vigía, Hemingway’s Cuban home, and her efforts to restore it. It must have been hard for her to leave when they divorced and to know it was taken over by Mary Welsh, her successor and Hemingway’s fourth wife. I also admired (and have read this many other times) Martha’s relationship with Hemingway’s sons. It was very good. She was kind, generous, and caring toward the boys.
(That being said, she knew very well that Hemingway was married to Pauline when they began their affair but could not resist his magnetism and of course he knew he was still very much married with children.)
In reading some of the reviews on Amazon, it seems well received. I have to note that many people just don’t like Hemingway. I think that there is so much written about him but I hardly read anywhere that he had a good sense of humor, or that he was driven and a hard worker, or that he loved his first wife to the end even though he knew he’d been a poor husband, or that he loved his animals and was kind and generous to veterans, his staff, charities. Perhaps it is easier to focus on his bad points, which again are not hard to find. His drinking, his insecurities, his desire to dominate are not pretty.
I do recommend it however as it’s good easy reading, interesting, and adds dimension and texture to Martha’s legacy.
So what do we make of this?The Bible is foolish and Hemingway’s sentences “too short.” Really? Read this and see if you agree. The below is quoting from the full article with a few comments. Check out the list directly. Best, Christine
GQ magazine: The Bible is “foolish” and “ill-intentioned”
The Bible’s been around for centuries but GQ magazine is like, eh? What’s so great about it? Instead of Scripture, it has a fiction recommendation for you.
The Good Book makes the mag’s list of “21 Books You Don’t Have to Read.”While allowing “there are some good parts,” the post warns that it’s “repetitive, self-contradictory, sententious, foolish, and even at times ill-intentioned.” ( This is me: Click above link to see the 21 books. Lonesome Dove? Really. One of the greatest westerns ever. Also on list is The Old Man and the Sea, and A Farewell to Arms. GQ goes on to suggest alternatives).
Instead, GQ suggests that instead of THE BIBLE, how about “The Notebook? by Agote Kristof, not the Nicholas Sparks book of the same name. Kritsof’s book is billed as “a marvelous tale of two brothers who have to get along when things get rough.” Ok, i have not read it and it is likely great but i am not convinced yet.
The Bible finds itself in the company of works by J.D. Salinger, Mark Twain, Ernest Hemingway on the list of books GQ is just not that into. “Catcher in the Rye” is dinged as being “without any literary merit whatsoever.” “Huckleberry Finn” is tedious, meandering and hamfisted. Hemingway’s sentences? Too short.
Dear Readers: Hemingway still inspires. Best, Christine
THE GOOD SOLDIER
John McCain Found Lifelong Inspiration From a Hemingway Hero
The late senator first read ‘For Whom the Bell Tolls’ when he was 12 years old, and the book’s hero, Robert Jordan, became an enduring role model.
No literary figure, Senator John McCain often pointed out, had more influence on how he conducted his life than Robert Jordan, the hero of Ernest Hemingway’s 1940 novel about the Spanish Civil War, For Whom the Bell Tolls.
In his most recent book, The Restless Wave, written in collaboration with Mark Salter, McCain wrote about his impending death by observing, “’The world is a fine place and worth the fighting for and I hate very much to leave it,’ spoke my hero, Robert Jordan, in For Whom the Bell Tolls. And I do, too. But I don’t have a complaint. Not one.”
McCain first read For Whom the Bell Tolls when he was 12, and he returned to it in succeeding years. “It’s my favorite novel of all time. It instructed me to see the world as it is, with all its corruption and cruelty, and believe it’s worth fighting for anyway, even dying for,” McCain observed earlier this year in an interview. The title of McCain’s 2002 memoir, Worth Fighting For, comes from the same For Whom the Bell Tolls passage that he quotes in The Restless Wave.
With so many literary heroes to pick from, McCain’s choice of Robert Jordan is revealing. Robert Jordan is no superhero, capable of overcoming all odds. Even in the 1943 movie version of For Whom the Bell Tolls, starring Gary Cooper and Ingrid Bergman, Jordan dies alone. In the passage McCain cites in The Restless Wave, Jordan lies concealed behind a tree with a submachine gun, hoping he can delay the heavily armed fascist troops who have been pursuing him and the guerrilla band he is with.
Jordan has gotten himself into this position by traveling from America to Spain to flight with the Loyalist forces supporting the democratically elected government of the five-year-old Spanish Republic, which in 1936 came under siege from a fascist military coalition led by General Francisco Franco, who ruled Spain from the end of the Spanish Civil War in 1939 until he died in 1975.
Jordan knows that his own death is a certainty. He has sustained a broken leg as a result of the horse he has been riding falling on him. No matter what he does, he cannot flee. The best that he can do is sacrifice his life so that others, including the woman he loves, may live. “You’ve had as good a life as anyone because of these last days,” Jordan tells himself. “You do not want to complain because you have been so lucky.”
As he faces the end of his life, Jordan’s bravery reflects his character, but just as important are the choices that have brought him to this point. He is not a professional soldier, although he comes from a family in which his grandfather fought in the Civil War for four years. Until now Jordan has led a quiet life as an instructor in Spanish at the University of Montana. As a child he saw a lynching, but he was too young to do anything about it.
What has led Jordan to abandon the comfortable life he was leading in America is the prospect of the Loyalist defenders of the Spanish Republic being overwhelmed by a fascist cabal relying on foreign aid. During the Spanish Civil War, America was neutral as a result of a bill President Roosevelt signed on May 1, 1937, banning the export of arms and ammunition to the warring parties in Spain.
By contrast, neither Germany nor Italy saw any reason to remain neutral when they believed they had much to gain from helping a fascist ally. As historian Adam Hochschild notes in Spain Is in Our Hearts, his account of the Americans who fought in the Spanish Civil War, the German and Italian contributions to Franco were immense and gave both nations a chance to test out weapons they would use in World War II.
Some 19,000 German troops and instructors saw action in Spain or helped train Fascist troops, and nearly 80,000 Italian troops fought for Franco between the start of the Spanish Civil War and its conclusion. The Soviet Union, which for a period identified itself with the Loyalists, provided only limited aid by comparison.
For Hemingway, who made four trips to Spain to report on its Civil War for the North American Newspaper Alliance, Jordan was an admirable figure who reflected what was best about the 2,800 Americans who went to Spain to fight on the Loyalist side. Jordan knows that the Loyalist side he is on is capable of great cruelty. He is no fan of the Communists who are part of the Loyalist alliance. But Jordan sees the flaws in the fascists as so much greater than those of the Loyalists that he does not back away from the commitment he has made to the war.
In this commitment Jordan mirrors Hemingway, who in a 1937 letter described the Spanish Civil War as “the dress rehearsal for the inevitable European war.” Hemingway raised money in support of the Loyalist side, and with his future wife, the correspondent Martha Gellhorn, who travelled to Spain with him, he went to the White House for a showing of the pro-Loyalist film, The Spanish Earth, before President and Eleanor Roosevelt.
In the end Hemingway had to content himself with doing his best rather than getting the outcome in Spain that he wanted, and so finally must Robert Jordan. What makes Jordan admirable is what made McCain admirable—his unwillingness to sit on the sidelines and watch democracy be undermined.
Happy Saturday morning, all Hemingway readers. A new story has been found and published from 1956, 5 years before Hem’s death. Hemingway of course did not feel it was finished so please keep that in mind but i can’t wait to read it. Hope your summer is going fantastically! i added photos.Best wishes, Christine
You can finally read this Ernest Hemingway story about Paris after WWII
On Aug. 14, 1956, Ernest Hemingway wrote to publisher Charlie Scribner about five short stories he had written: “I suppose they are a little shocking since they deal with irregular troops and combat and with people who actually kill people….Anyway you can always publish them after I’m dead.”
More than six decades later, fans can finally read one of the long-unpublished stories.
“A Room on the Garden Side” centers on a fictionalized version of Hemingway at the Paris Ritz Hotel toward the end of World War II, and is punctuated with books, liquor, soldiers and a love of Paris — all familiar trademarks.
The Hemingway Estate granted publishing rights to The Strandquarterly literary magazine in last October.
“With a precious little gem like Ernest Hemingway, you don’t ask any questions,” managing editor and Hemingway aficionado Andrew Gulli said. “You just count yourself fortunate that you get the chance to publish something by one of the greatest writers in the 20th century.”
The 3,000-word story is narrated by Robert, or “Papa,” a clear representation of Hemingway himself, with a sense of pathos for times gone by and the sacrifice of soldiers. It quotes heavily from the poem “Les Fleurs du Mal,” by Charles Baudelaire, charging the story with poignancy over the ways the city of Paris was changed by the war.
“It has some of his favorite themes,” Gulli said. “What I really found interesting is there is some humor and laughter and the talk of people who just won a battle, but beneath that you see a sadness for the people that died during the conflict.”
Hemingway wrote “A Room on the Garden Side,” more than a decade after WWII, a conflict during which he had served as both reporter and unofficial soldier. Only one other story in the quintet he wrote in 1956 was previously published, according to Kirk Curnutt, board member of The Ernest Hemingway Foundation and Society.
“In 1944 when he is one of the first Americans into Paris on the day of the liberation, it is a very profound moment for him — for reclamation of freedom, but also the reclamation of a city that was stolen from him as well,” Curnutt said.
“A Room on the Garden Side” takes place just after the liberation of Paris at the end of the war, where Robert and a ragtag group of “irregulars” — members of the French resistance — sit drinking and reminiscing with the famous Charley Ritz in his namesake hotel on the Right Bank of Paris. The Ritz was Hemingway’s favorite hotel away from home throughout his life.
Scholars like Curnutt have known about the story — 15 handwritten pages — for some time. (It has been housed at the Library of Congress and John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston.) But this is the first time the story will be published for the wider public.
“[The Estate has] steered away from commercializing anything unpublished,” Gulli said. “They were very kind to give the story to The Strand because they understand we have a good track record of publishing unpublished works. They want to make sure that if something is released that it will honor the memory of Ernest Hemingway.”
“To me it’s not like Hemingway is an unknown writer and that this will bring him back into competition,” Gulli said. “It’s more of the passion to have a writer that you’ve admired and revered your whole life and to get it published in Strand magazine — it’s a wonderful feeling to know Hemingway is gracing our pages.”
Where is Hemingway’s soul? A writer says he knows.
Very nice article. Some photos added by me. Best, Christine
Michael Patrick Shiels, For the Lansing State JournalPublished 8:18 a.m. ET April 14, 2018
Modern America’s most revered, complex and troubled novelist Ernest Hemingway – the man known as “Papa” – traveled (and took his readers) to battlefields and bars in places such as the beaches of Normandy and the canals of Venice, plus the Congo, Caribbean and China, to name a few.
Hemingway hunted German U-boats (from his fishing boat) off Key West; survived multiple plane crashes; and avoided being gored at the “Running of the Bulls,” in Pamplona, Spain before doing himself in with his favorite shotgun on an early July day near Sun Valley, Idaho.
Robert Wheeler authored “Hemingway’s Havana: A Reflection of the Writer’s Life in Cuba,” featuring rich photography, and “Hemingway’s Paris: A Writer’s City in Words and Images.”
Since the sun never sets on Hemingway’s logistical legacy, where, I asked Wheeler, does he think Hemingway’s soul is most palpable: Petoskey? Paris? Pamplona?
“I would have to say based on my travels Hemingway’s spirit can be found beautifully in Havana. I think the spirit of him as a young apprentice writer in love with Hadley is alive and well in Paris,” said Wheeler. “But in Havana you can find his spirit not only walking in the sea breeze along the Malecon, but also in the various cafes he frequented.”
Hemingway drank mojitos in Havana at the earthy La Bodeguita del Medio; and his “Papa Doble” daiquiris at the snazzy La Floridita, where a life-sized statue of him is seated at the bar. Most travelers to Havana make a pilgrimage to visit Hemingway’s former home “Finca Vigia” and its grounds, which has been restored by Lansing-based Christman Company.
“You can especially feel Hemingway’s presence through the voices of the people there who knew him or knew of him. He left them with beautiful memories and with tears,” said Wheeler, who researched the book by traveling to Cuba via Toronto.
“I’ve never flown to Cuba on a flight from the United States, but there are certain ways you can,” Wheeler explained. (Canadians, by contrast to U.S. citizens, can fly freely to Havana due to the absence of a trade embargo.) “Americans have to provide a reason why they are traveling there. It’s very easy, though, to say, for instance, that you’re writing an article for your local newspaper. Then you maintain a record of that and keep your receipts and have an itinerary you can show if need be.”
Wheeler’s first Hemingway read was “The Garden of Eden,” which was published posthumously in 1986.
“From the second I opened that book I was hooked,” he said. “It was a foreign land; it was a man and woman on an extended honeymoon in Mediterranean France. After that I went on to read Hemingway’s Nick Adams series, so, in a sense, I went from France right over to Michigan.”
Hemingway set the Nick Adams stories in Northern Michigan towns such as Horton Bay and Mancelona where he grew up summering on Walloon Lake. A life-sized statue of young Ernest Hemingway was unveiled in the center of Petoskey in summer of 2017.
Could another Wheeler book featuring Hemingway’s roots in Northern Michigan be in the works?
ContactTravel Writer Michael Patrick Shiels at MShiels@aol.com His radio program may be heard weekday mornings on 92.1 FM. His latest book is “I Call Him Mr. President – Stories of Fishing, Golf and Life with my Friend George H.W. Bush”
Thank you, Michael Patrick Sheils for this article as well as Robert Wheeler for his book on Hemingway and Cuba. Best, Christine
DREW’S 10 Favorite books to take with her to a Desert Island (Media added by me).
Who knew that Drew Barrymore likes Hemingway?
On her list of her 10 favorite books that she’d take if marooned on a desert island she had Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms. Her comment was “I defy a woman to read this and not cry. It is so romantic, and epic – even when it takes place in one room.”
Since I’m sure you’re curious by now, the other 9 were the following:
The Four Agreements, by Don Miguel Ruiz. “This is a book I found at a very hard time in my life and it rescued me. It offers succinct and approachable advice about how to behave in life.”
Still Life with Woodpecker, by Tom Robbins. “A love story that’s filled with poetic analogy, this man speaks in strange and delicious descriptions.”
Endurance, by Alfred Lansing. “This taught me that if you lead, you need to take peoples personalities into account when you guide them. Shackleton is a brilliant hero.”
Frannie and Zoey, by J.D. Salinger. “This book surprised me. I didn’t see it coming and yet it wasn’t trying to trick me; it made me feel like a welcome fly on the wall.”
Holidays on Ice, by David Sedaris. “If anyone knows what it’s like to be alone on Christmas I’m sure they will have wished they had this book. It’s a humor guide for what could seem lonely and it sets you up for joy.”
Women, by Charles Bukowski. “Bukowski is my favorite, for me he was always on point.”
Full of Life, by John Fante. “This mans perspective of the journey of pregnancy and birth is an eye opener into the member of the other sexes perspective.”
Oh The Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss. “Because you sometimes need to be reminded your journey is meaningful in the sweetest way. Hope for all ages.”
All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten, by Robert Fulghum. “Even as adults we need to be forced to go back to basics. This book is nostalgic but makes you think.”
And then of course, rounding at the list, A Farewell to Arms, by Ernest Hemingway.
So! What say you? Are these the 100 Greatest Novels ever? There can only be one per author (Explaining why there is only one Hemingway novel on the list!) These are not in any order of greatness but are merely alphabetical. So here you go. PBS has put this together so read Jay Oliver’s article. Interesting!
email@example.com May 23, 2018
Using the public opinion polling service “YouGov,” PBS and its producers conducted a demographically and statistically representative survey asking around 7,200 Americans to name their most-loved title, according to the web page. PBS said tallied results were organized by an advisory panel of 13 literary professionals.
Criteria allowed for works of fiction from all over the world, as long as the novels were published in English. They allowed only one title per author.
Reporters and editors in the Yakima Herald-Republic’s newsroom were given copies of the list to find out which titles were the most popular — and to see who’s read the most from their newsroom staff.
The most widely read title by newsroom respondents is Harper Lee’s “To Kill a Mockingbird.”
Two books tied as the second most-read — “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer,” by Mark Twain and E.B. White’s “Charlotte’s Web” — while George Orwell’s “1984” was the third most widely read in the newsroom.
John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath” and “Great Expectations” by Charles Dickens tied with C.S. Lewis’ “The Chronicles of Narnia” series as the fourth most read titles.
Rounding out the top five was F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby,” which was read by as many folks as two other series — J.R.R. Tolkein’s “The Lord of the Rings” and “Harry Potter” from J.K. Rowling.
Here’s the List (alphabetical not by greatest of the great.)
1984 by George Orwell
A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving
A Separate Peace by John Knowles
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
Alex Cross Mysteries (series) by James Patterson
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
Another Country by James Baldwin
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand
Beloved by Toni Morrison
Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Díaz
The Call of the Wild by Jack London
Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White
The Chronicles of Narnia (series) by C.S. Lewis
The Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M. Auel
The Coldest Winter Ever by Sister Souljah
The Color Purple by Alice Walker
The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
Doña Bárbara by Rómulo Gallegos
Dune by Frank Herbert
Fifty Shades of Grey (series) by E.L. James
Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews
Foundation (series) by Isaac Asimov
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Games of Thrones (series) by George R.R. Martin
Ghost by Jason Reynolds
Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
The Giver by Lois Lowry
The Godfather by Mario Puzo
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
Harry Potter (series) by J.K. Rowling
Hatchet (series) by Gary Paulsen
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
The Help by Kathryn Stockett
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
The Hunger Games (series) by Suzanne Collins
The Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy
The Intuitionist by Colson Whitehead
Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton
Left Behind (series) by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins
The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry
Looking for Alaska by John Green
The Lord of the Rings (series) by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
The Martian by Andy Weir
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
Mind Invaders by Dave Hunt
Moby Dick by Herman Melville
The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks
One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
Outlander (series) by Diana Gabaldon
The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan
The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
The Shack by William P. Young
Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut
The Stand by Stephen King The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
Swan Song by Robert McCammon
Tales of the City (series) by Armistead Maupin
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
This Present Darkness by Frank E. Peretti
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Twilight Saga (series) by Stephenie Meyer
War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
The Watchers by Dean Koontz
The Wheel of Time (series) by Robert Jordan
Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls
White Teeth by Zadie Smith
Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
This is me: Hmm. Food for thought. I was at first shocked that For Whom the Bell Tolls was not here but as noted, only one book per author permitted. Happy Memorial Day to all! C
Walker Evans was a photographer who translated photography in the same way that Hemingway translated literature. Both were pioneers. Each one had an appreciation for the spare style that would influence many others, both in photography and in literature. They became friendly during Walker Evans’ one month stay in Havana in 1933, although Hemingway was not yet living in Cuba. He didn’t get there until late 1939, early 1940, but he certainly visited.
Evans entrusted Hemingway with some of his original prints to be sure they would not be confiscated by authorities during political upheaval in Cuba.
Now, 46 of the vintage prints are for sale by rare book collections. The collection is owned by a man named Benjamin Bruce. His father, Telly Otto Bruce, known as Toby, was Hemingway’s friend and guardian of the images for many decades in Key West.
Evans had gone to Cuba to take the photos for a book that was written by Carlton Beales called The Crime of Cuba. It was a fierce critique of American adventurism and an expose of the “disgraceful part we played in her tragic history.” “I had a wonderful time with Hemingway,” Evans was quoted. “Drinking every night, he was at loose ends…and needed a drinking companion and I filled that role for two weeks.”
Whether Hemingway’s prose style influenced Evans is unclear. However, the political intrigue in Cuba did lead Evans to give Hemingway the prints that would in turn be taken to Key West by boat. Once there, the images ended up in storage near Sloppy Joe’s, the famous Key West saloon. “The humidity of Key West made a lot of things a little ripe but the photos are still beautiful,” Scott Dewolf, art curator, said.
BELOW IS AN article about Paula McLain’s historical novel about Hemingway’s third wife, Journalist Martha Gellhorn. Photos added by me. Best, Christine
Cleveland Heights Author Highlights Hemingway’s Competition with Third Wife Gellhorn (By Dan Polletta in IDEASTREAMING)
It might sound like a cliché, but the subject for Paula McLain’s new novel “Love and Ruin” (Random House) came to her in a dream.
After penning “The Paris Wife,” the best-seller about Ernest Hemingway’s first wife Hadley Richardson, McLain had no intention of writing any more about Hemingway until she dreamt of being on a fishing boat with him and his third wife Martha Gellhorn.
The next day McLain researched Gellhorn on the internet. She admits to being “embarrassed” about how little she knew about her.
“I knew she was a journalist, but not that she was perhaps the most important journalistic voice of the 20th century, that her career as a journalist and war correspondent covered 60 years, every major conflict of the 20th century. Of course, as we know, journalism and being a war correspondent was absolutely a man’s world, so it was an extraordinary feat in itself, let alone that her voice was so iconic and her accomplishments so everlasting,” McLain said.
The 28-year-old Gellhorn, who had done some cub reporting for the Albany “Times Union,” met her literary hero in a Key West bar at the end of 1936.
“She literally bumped into Hemingway in his own watering hole, ‘Sloppy Joe’s.’ He was there reading his mail. He was about to go off to report on the Spanish Civil War for the North American Newspaper Alliance,” McLain said.
McLain said Gellhorn saw meeting Hemingway, who was heading to a war that many saw as romantic, as her chance to attach herself to “noble and larger than herself.” She agreed to go with him to Spain, where she too would cover the war.
During her time reporting from Madrid, Gellhorn found her journalistic voice and fell in love with Hemingway.
From 1936 until 1940, the two lived together off and on until they married. During that time Gellhorn covered the rise of Adolph Hitler in Germany as well as Czechoslovakia a few months before sections of it were annexed by the Nazis. She wrote about that experience in her 1940 novel “A Stricken Field.”
That same year Hemingway also published his novel “For Whom the Bell Tolls.” McLain said it was a major turning point in both of their lives.
“Hemingway was already quite famous at that point, but this book catapulted him into literary stardom. I can’t really imagine what it would have been like for her, under his roof, also trying to be a writer. She was trying to get her own literary ambitions realized. She loved her own books, as he loved his. She devoted herself to her novels and stories but of course didn’t have the success. Hemingway became completely involved in “For Whom the Bell Tolls,” which I think changed his life. The book became the focal point of their lives. It took all of the air and all of their attention.”
McLain said the book’s overwhelming presence in their lives started the process of driving them apart.
“I think Hemingway forgot what attracted him to Gellhorn when he first met her. Here was this incredible woman, so bold. He called her ‘the bravest woman he had ever met.’ She was clearly ambitious. Yet, once she became his wife, that ambition and devotion to her own career, that independence began to threaten him,” McLain said.
In 1944, Hemingway, feeling more and more abandoned when Gellhorn went off to cover war, offered his services to “Collier’s” magazine, for whom Gellhorn wrote. “Collier’s” accepted, replacing Gellhorn with Hemingway, just as she was preparing to go Normandy in 1944 to cover the D-Day invasion.
“She had no magazine for which to report, no credentials, no way to get over to the most important battle in history. Instead of rolling over, she found a way over to Europe on an ammunitions barge. When she got to London, she stowed away on what proved to be a hospital barge, which she didn’t know. She lied her way onto ship, locked herself in the john, and when she woke up she discovered she was on the first hospital barge for the Normandy Invasion,” McLain said.
McLain said Gellhorn going overseas in spite of Hemingway’s attempts to stop her was the breaking point of their relationship.
“They don’t recover after that. He really never forgave her. Of his four wives, she’s the only one to leave, and she’s really the only one who is his equal in every way. When they split in 1945, Gellhorn made it a point to never have his name spoken in her presence. She said ‘I don’t believe I should be remembered as footnote to anyone else’s life,’” McLain said.
Paula McLain will discuss her book at these Northeast Ohio locations this weekend