“ I mistrust all frank and simple people, especially when their stories hold together,” says Hemingway’s narrator Jake Barnes. However this remarkable novel which follows the stories of Americans living abroad after the first world war manages to be frank without ever being simple and consists of stories that are beautifully held together.
The European scenery depicted by Hemingway is the the most indelible: from drinking Pernod in Paris Cafes to fishing in a mountain stream in the Pyrenees where our narrator seeks to escape his grief. The book offers a beautiful window to France and Spain. Particularly in Spain, you get to visit three diverse locations: Burguete, San Sebastian and Madrid. Woven beautifully with the emotional transitions in the book are the characteristics of each location–countryside to urban, homely to hip.
Some quotes from this classic:
“You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another.”
“The world was not wheeling anymore. It was just very clear and bright and inclined to blur at the edges.”
“This is a good place,” he said.
“There’s a lot of liquor,” I agreed.”