Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Reading: Hemingway

I read an article recently about William Faulkner's last living relative and I realized, I have never read any Faulkner books. I also acknowledge this is a crime against both my southernhood AND  the literary pedigree to which I aspire (if there can be such a thing). So, I went to the book store and looked into buying myself a Faulkner book to read.

I left with out one.

Now, that is not to say I will not eventually read one, if not all of his books. I will guilt myself into it just like I did with Eudora Welty, who I was lukewarm about. It's just that I am not into the depressing Great Depression right now. And all  his books seem to be about that era and southern writers are notoriously maudlin.

Instead, I bought another book that I have wanted to read for a long time by one of my very favorite authors.  The author whose books usually plunge me into a  mopey depression to which the only solution to get out of  is to read something  silly like a Harlequin romancer (not really, but you get the idea). I am currently reading  A Movable Feast by Ernest Hemingway.  Non-fiction and set in the hey days of the 1920's when Paris was the it spot for authors such as Gertrude Stein, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ezra Pound and Hemingway, it is an autobiography of Ernest and his first wife Hadley's time together in France. So far, so good.

I love Hemingway. A love that was sparked on my wedding/ honeymoon trip to Key West that included a visit to his house. I had read The Old Man and the Sea, but it really came alive to me in his house, complete with the broken marble where he had thrown an epic fit when he found out his wife had put in what amounted to a million dollar swimming pool. I went home, reread it and fell in love.Then I went on to read several others, but my two favorites remain The Old Man and the Sea and A Farewell to Arms.

We went back to Key West three years ago and stayed next to his house and his cats . These were actually decedents of  his polydactyl cats who wandered around the inn we were staying in, enchanting me again. Who was this man who owned weird cats, drank, fought, raged, loved and wrote some of the best literature ever?

So right now, instead of embracing my southern roots, I am embracing my love of Key West and the man who made it famous for drinking and writing.  Two things that I personally can get into.

1 comment:

  1. love it! I went on my first trip to Key West when I knew Jason for only 4 months, we were there for 10 glorious days! We also went to Hemmingway's house...I might just have to read the biography of him..I actually really love biography type books(memoirs) The last one I read was really excellent, the one about Frank Lloyd Wright..Loving Frank.