In 1936, at the height of his creative powers and popularity, Ernest Hemingway wrote the following to his friend, the poet Archibald MacLeish: "Me I like life very much. So much it will be a big disgust when have to shoot myself." Twenty-five years later, the innovative author, legendary big-game hunter, and disappointed father and husband did exactly that, ending his life with a shotgun blast to the head at the age of 61. It was a messy, ignominious end to a messy, often tragic, and occasionally glorious life - one that has been so extensively examined that readers can be forgiven for rolling their eyes at the prospect of yet another addition to the Hemingway biographical canon. Yet Hemingway's Boat, for all its frustrating idiosyncrasies, clearly deserves a place at that heavily loaded banquet table.
Rather than simply penning a straightforward chronological account of Hemingway's...
For more information, listen to NPR's interview with Paul Hendrickson entitled The Old Man And The Boat: Hemingway On The Pilar (Oct 2011).
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