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Published for the first time as Ernest Hemingway intended, one of the great writer's most enduring works: his classic memoir of Paris in the 1920s

Published posthumously in 1964, A Moveable Feast remains one of Ernest Hemingway's most beloved works. Since Hemingway's personal papers were released in 1979, scholars have examined and debated the changes made to the text before publication. Now this new special restored edition presents the original manuscript as the author prepared it to be published.

Featuring a personal foreword by Patrick Hemingway, Ernest's sole surviving son, and an introduction by the editor and grandson of the author, Seán Hemingway, this new edition also includes a number of unfinished, never-before-published Paris sketches revealing experiences that Hemingway had with his son Jack and his first wife, Hadley. Also included are irreverent portraits of other luminaries, such as F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ford Madox Ford, and insightful recollections of his own early experiments with his craft.

Sure to excite critics and readers alike, the restored edition of A Moveable Feast brilliantly evokes the exuberant mood of Paris after World War I and the unbridled creativity and unquenchable enthusiasm that Hemingway himself epitomized.

Topics: First Person Narration, Creative Nonfiction, Allusive, 1920s, Paris, Creativity, American Author, Expat Life, Writers, Friendship, Counterculture, Lost Generation, Male Author, Modernism, Art & Artists, France, and Spare

Published: Scribner on Jul 14, 2009
ISBN: 9781439166451
List price: $11.99
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Hemingway at his most charming with anecdotes from his Paris yearsread more
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I’ve just spent a lovely sojourn with Ernest Hemingway. Oh, I know he has been deceased for fifty years, but that is of no consequence. You see, he spoke to me. He returned to life once again in his memoir A Moveable Feast. As I read this enjoyable memoir I felt as if he wanted to share stories of a particularly happy time in his life and as we dined at Michaud’s in Paris or downed cocktails at The Closerie des Lilas, the nearest good café when he lived at 113 rue Notre-Dame-des-Champs, Hem shared with me his writing techniques. Especially important was to “Write the truest sentence that you know.” He talked of his friendships with Gertrude Stein and Ezra Pound. His recollections of Ford Madox Ford were particularly amusing as was his road trip with Scott Fitzgerald. Tatie, as his wife called him, displays a delightfully mischievous sense of humor and I could almost detect a sparkle in his eye as he recalled the good times they shared. I got the impression that he regretted that their life together, that the luck which kept the good times coming, came to a conclusion. As Hemingway wrote this, I can’t help but wonder if the underlying sadness I perceived contributed to his death.Would I recommend it…………………Absolutely! I’m willing to bet that when you lift the cover off of this book, Hem will talk to you too. This one will hold a permanent place on my bookshelf.read more
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A work of fiction masquerading as memoir, or perhaps vice-versa, Hemingway’s sketches tell of life in Paris in the 1920’s and the writers and artists who made that one of the more romantic places and eras. Its hard to believe what Hemingway writes is truth yet it offers insight into many personas such as Stein, Picasso, and Fitzgerald, and perhaps inadvertently Hemingway himself. Good preparation for my own American in Paris experience this summer. I also like Hemingway’s idea of writing one story for each thing you know about. Good advice for my own literary career should it be reborn.read more
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Beautifully written. Reads like one of his short stories. With a lot of insight into his writing method and his ideas. It introduces another side to Hemingway, and it is a calm, relaxed, goalless novella, which gives a freedom to the reader. A beautiful piece of literature which I and probably everybody else would recommend to any Hemingway fanread more
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My friend gave me this book right before I left for Paris for the semester, and it gave me an appreciation of both Paris & Hemingway.read more
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I have to say I enjoyed this book more than his fiction.read more
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This book, when I first it, really startled me with the sincerity of its author. Hemingway tells a lot about his craft, technique and psychology. I have not seen this level of opennes and straightforwardness in many of modern American writers whose works are still being read today.read more
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I liked this book because of who wrote it, not because of how well-written it was. I was interested in reading this book because of all the references in it from NEVER ANY END TO PARIS by Enrique Vila-Matas. I like the way Ernest thinks. I enjoyed reading his ideas about people, writing, Paris, and his life in general. I especially enjoyed the last few segments regarding F. Scott Fitzgerald, Zelda, and Ernest falling for another woman and messing his perfect life up with regrets for all. But I did not love the book any more than I loved the way old Ernest died. He did make it interesting however.read more
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I chose this week to read, while preparing for my vacation at the Hemingway Days festival in Key West by reading Ernest Hemingway's, A Moveable Feast. Set in 1920s Paris, it is a retrospective by Hemingway of his life at that time, married to Hadley and surrounded by fellow ex-pats that ranged from Gertrude Stein to Ezra Pound and to F. Scott Fitzgerald. Almost every page provides an image into life in Paris, and I found myself wandering the rue Cardinal Lemoine or by the Seine, drinking from a small carafe of wine or eating in one of the cafès that Hemingway gathers to write. Perhaps he is at the next table?Although Ernest Hemingway writes in his preface, "If the reader prefers, this book may be regarded as fiction. But there is always the chance that such a book of fiction may throw some light on what has been written as fact." This he relates after he has completed writing A Moveable Feast in 1960, and it is honestly told, no fluff to his descriptions of streets, stores, and life for him and his wife. It is before Hemingway has become the famous writer, and in Paris, he is a struggling writer, being turned down by American magazines, and only being accepted by German publications. Each page is his daily life writing and struggling, living and struggling, and providing for his family. He writes of Hadley in a favorable light, almost sweetly, and she is his supportive wife, and I felt regret from Hemingway. I thought of him writing these events, now an older man living in Cuba, about his younger life in Paris, loyal or insane or sad ex-pats rounding out his circle of friends, and he is unashamedly blunt in his thoughts on each writer or poet that he interacts with.Hemingway is honest in every detail that he shares. If it is a dark day with black clouds, that is how he writes it, with nothing more, nothing less. I was enchanted by that and I was left to my own imagination, as Hemingway would walk the streets to Sylvia Beach's bookshop, Shakespeare and Company. He writes of being provided books to read on credit, and how he and Hadley save to go on trips together, and how much love they had for each other. Together, they played the races, but it never created tensions between them, only people did, he writes. I found it all to be incredibly sad, especially in the final pages as he writes about deception and his first affair, and it drips with sadness, regret for his choices, and my heart broke again. Perhaps I was so sad about these events because Hemingway, shortly after finishing this book, commits suicide. Does he wish for life to be done over again, to make better choices?If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go, for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast. Ernest HemingwayPerhaps I am such a fan for Hemingway and his life that this book touched me so deeply. Or perhaps it is the stark grittiness and beauty of Paris that he shares, and the grief of a writer in the midst of it all, that made me feel his lamentations and remorse? I can say that I read books with small Post-It notes to highlight pages that strike me as touching, funny, brilliant, grieving, and I can only honestly convey to you how I felt about this book by sharing this picture of it with you. I loved this story.read more
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I read (or rather re-read) A Moveable Feast after reading The Paris Wife. It was interesting to read his perspective forty years later of his years in Paris when he was married to his first wife Hadley. They were poor and little known and Hemingway is somewhat nostalgic about those days yet not in a sentimental way. A Moveable Feast is a collection of vignettes about life in Paris and includes stories about Gertrude Stein and Scott Fitzgerald. His stories about Scott Fitzgerald were the most interesting to me.read more
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I'm not entirely sure what I think of this book. It's basically a series of essays about Hemingway's early years in Paris, but there's not much of a connection between most of them, and they're not all necessarily in chronological order. But given that I read the book while in Paris, it was enjoyable to read about streets and quarters that I've been in.read more
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Because our book club's choice for September was a Victorian novelist (ugh) I decided to try Hemingway for the first time. The first two chapters for some reason didn't click, so I started over, and then really enjoyed it. Hemingway's tendency toward run-on sentences can be distracting, but you get so wrapped up in the artistry of his writing that it doesn't really matter.read more
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"A Moveable Feast" is Hemingway’s final attempt to mold his public persona, but he was hardly the first American author to use fiction as a vehicle for wealth, notoriety, and the construction of a macho public image. As a child of the early 20th century, it is difficult to imagine young Hemingway not being aware of the works of Jack London, a product of a difficult childhood who made his name writing about vigorous, dangerous outdoor life, military action, and sports like boxing. The public persona wasn’t always effective-- President Theodore Roosevelt, another larger-than-life macho contemporary, assailed London as a “nature faker”—but provided a template for the next generation of manly writers, of which Hemingway was the king. Hemingway’s took the mantel to new heights, most notably his achievement of the Nobel Prize, but, with the exception of his time in Paris, largely followed the Jack London path, albeit with the addition of sport hunting and deep sea fishing to the genre. The earlier author’s attempt at memoir was the 1914 "John Barleycorn," which covered virtually all of his life in the first person and identified alcohol and intellectualism as the causes of his bad behavior and downfall. Hemingway’s entry was "A Moveable Feast," which, despite having 20 more years of life and two more marriages than London had enjoyed, focused on Paris while only touching on his failures as a husband, father, and friend. The bulk of the story in "Feast" concerns Hemingway, wife Hadley, and friends as innocent and comely starving bohemians. There is never the slightest hint of marital strife, even though the narrator briefly mentions during the book that the marriage was fated to end in short order. The oblique tension of a story like Hills Like White Elephants, which was published during the time period Hemingway recalls in Feast, is completely absent from their poor, but putatively happy domestic life. They have a son, Bumby, but he makes few appearances across the narrative, and shares billing with the cat F. Puss, who Hemingway describes as Bumby’s babysitter, a startling revelation that is presented in a light-hearted way that doesn’t suggest child neglect. “There were people who said it was dangerous to leave a cat with a baby,” but no harm ever came to either, so it was perfectly fine to do this." Hemingway himself spends little time at home in the book, however, preferring travel to Italy, Spain, and Austria (though he and his young family were broke and subject to going hungry) and to write and hobnob in Parisian cafes. Hemingway was, of course, always the better man in these encounters with individuals some would consider his literary superiors: Ford Maddox Ford was far more arrogant and self-deluded than him, for instance. Fitzgerald was not only a far more pathetic drunk, but had been with only one woman, his wife, who felt that his anatomy was inadequate, two problems narrator Hemingway by implication never had. To boot, he vigorously shoots down Gertrude Stein’s accepting talk of male homosexuals, and essentially breaks with her when her own homosexuality is revealed. Hemingway is stalwart, though: When Pascin offers one of his nubile models to him as a sex partner, the married narrator gallantly declines, and does so with charm. The infidelity that ultimately ruined the marriage was in fact not his fault, but that of, “another rich using the oldest trick there is. It is that an unmarried young woman becomes the temporary best friend of another young woman who is married, goes to live with the husband and wife and then unknowingly, innocently and unrelentingly sets out to marry the husband.”Narrators are virtually always a vicarious stand-in for the reader, but Hemingway made sure of the reader’s sympathy by occasionally shifting into the second person. Significantly, virtually everyone mentioned in Feast save Hadley and Bumby were dead by the time "Feast" was written.read more
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this book is not at all what i was expecting, it was so much better. when i first picked it up i was expecting more of a plot, when really it was more a string of anecdotes and opinions within a timeframe. the language is beautiful and i finally realize what all the fuss is about. a friend of mine read this book while we were traveling in paris and i only wish i had read it then and traveled to all of those places, too.read more
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this could range all the way from a two star to a five star depending upon"-- your love of simplistic language, yet creative in its imagery.-- your love of Paris in the 1920s.-- your interest in the members of the lost generation (la generation perdue)-- your interest in literature and the Hemingway influence (grandfather of existentialism in America and the "minimalism" of the 1980s onwards.To me it's a five star.read more
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Those who have not seen the elephant and lack the courage to go looking for it have no right to criticize Ernest Hemingway, who set out as a young man to find the elephant and get a good long look at the Beast, and then describe it for the rest of us. As a young man he did not yet realize that few people are as brave and as honest as he.He went. He saw. He wrote. He told us all about it -- and scarcely anyone believes him. Those who don't tell the few who do that Papa was a fool and a bad man. So it is in life as it was in "The Old Man and the Sea." Now that the big fish is dead, the little ones come to gnaw on his corpse.Nobody with anything to lose has a friend in this world. The person who has nothing may find one. Papa knew.'A Moveable Feast' is for stargazers everywhere. If you're one of those who dotes on famous people and if, in particular, you dote on members of 'The Lost Generation,' this is the book for you because it shows you what your heroes look like in their underwear.Fans of Ernest will love 'A Moveable Feast.' Fans of Scott and Zelda may hate it. Fans of Gertrude will - - - - Well there's no telling how they'll feel about it, which was always a problem, even for poor old Gert. The only character in the whole set who gets away clean is the lady owns the bookstore and binds up busted heads. Highly recommended.read more
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I read this because I read The Paris Wife (about Hemingway's first wife Hadley) Hemingway writes about life in Paris; I enjoyed reading this so close to reading The Paris Wiferead more
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This was an enjoyable read. I'm partial to books about Paris, but it was also interesting to imagine all these old, legendary writers, romping around town.read more
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A must read after reading The Paris Wife :Dread more
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An older Hemingway reminisces fondly about his time in Paris and other European vacation spots trying to make ends meet as a writer, but not as a journalist. These are fun, evocative stories about writing, food and drinking – really some of the most enjoyable activities in Paris, and anywhere in the world for that matter. The sections with F. Scott Fitzgerald are a riot, and the ending of the book is sad as it presages less happy times. The book is written in Hemingway’s peculiar unadorned direct style, in a prose that is economical: he wants to tell us like it is. I liked the book, it reminded me of my student days – we were just as alive and in love with beautiful things in life, but with an ounce of the talent.read more
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"If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast."In general I'm not a huge fan of Hemingway. I've read For Whom the Bell Tolls, Farewell to Arms, The Old Man and the Sea, The Sun Also Rises and True at First Light, so I have a decent view of his breadth of work. It always seems stilted to me. I feel distant from whatever is happening. The plot is too simple or I don't feel connected to the characters, especially the women, who are apparently only there to serve the men. I've enjoyed some of his books, but wouldn't say I love them. The exception to that is A Moveable Feast, which is interesting because it's the only nonfiction book of his I've read. Hemingway wrote this about his early days as a writer when he was living in Paris with his wife Hadley in the 1920s. He was a struggling artist, spending his days writing in cafes and hanging out with his friends, Joyce, Pound and Fitzgerald to name a few. I read this book shortly after moving back to the states from London. I had visited Paris multiple times while in Europe and the beauty of the city was still fresh in my mind. I'm sure that had a huge impact on my appreciation for the book, just as your personal experiences always have an effect on how you interpret what you're reading. I don't think this is a perfect book. Many critique it for the rosy view of Hemingway and negative view of many others. But to me that's expected... Hemingway wrote it, take his words with a big grain of salt. Of course he's going to make himself look good and idealize that time period. The thing that hooked me is his description of the places and the people. It made me want to be there on the Left Bank perusing books in the Shakespeare and Co. or taking a road trip with Fitzgerald. Everything felt so real to me. It was the first time I felt completely drawn in to one of his books and I think it's because he was actually connected to that life, so he couldn't help pouring those feelings into the book.read more
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I really enjoyed this book. I loved all the name-dropping and gossip about writers Hemingway spent time with in Paris. I'm a big fan of F. Scott Fitzgerald, so the stories about him and crazy Zelda were especially interesting to me.read more
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"Limned in acid" is how one biographer described Hemingway's last and maybe best book, and indeed it is. Yet A Moveable Feast also captures Hemingway's extraordinary sensitivity to his internal and external environment, his fine sense of humor, and his authentic love for his first wife Hadley.read more
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Will rate this after a re-read of the classic version (possibly back to back with a re-read of this version depending on the time-table). Oh- seems like it is already rated by me. It is not differentiating between this edition and the classic one.read more
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the not so gruff side of Hemingway; a good, easy read; made me hungry and thirstyread more
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Instead of doing my shopping, I spent a couple of days this week in Paris, with Hemingway in the 1920's. Oh what a time I had! In "A Moveable Feast" Hemingway recalls his days in Paris, with friends like Gertrude Stein, Ezra Pound, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Zelda. What I wouldn't give to have actually have been a fly on the wall. Sylvia Beach, owner of Shakespeare and Company, a wonderful bookstore, had a lending library, where Ernest got many of the books he carried with him on his many travels.I love the way he writes. To me it is just like listening to a real person.As he tries to write and sell his stories, he also basks in the wonder of Paris, and all the wonderful friends he made during his time there. His struggles with money and drink become more apparent as time moves on, but still he writes. His son Bumby sounds like a precocious and charming little boy, who he seems to have adored. His first wife Hadley stood with him through lean times and they seemed happiest when they had the least.The descriptions of the people, the sounds and sights of Paris made for a wonderful trip. What a better way to spend the week before Christmas...Wish you were here!This book came from my local Library!Happiest of Holidays to one and all.....read more
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Collected and published posthumously this book contains fiction and non-fiction from Hemingway's time spent in Paris.read more
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When it comes to his accounts of F. Scott Fitzgerald, I can't help but wonder if he is competing here by offering up some unsavoury details: about the drunken hypochondriac F. Scott Fitzgerald taking to his bedcovers with worry he'd contracted consumption, about his trip with Hem to the Louvre to view classical statues to reassure himself he was of 'normal' size in manly respects, and of course Scott's troubles with Zelda. After revealing all this, he quickly sums up in a sentence or two the great and reliable friend the sober Scott was, and continued to be, for so many years.read more
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Okay, don't laugh, but "A Moveable Feast" is the first Hemingway I've ever read. I don't know what I was expecting but I had the vague idea it involved French food.Actually, the book is a collection of stories about Hemingway's time in Paris, when he was just getting started in his writing career. He met a lot of recognizable people and wrote about them in here, and his anecdotes are interesting and insightful and, more often than not, FUNNY, which surprised me. I totally did not expect to lol while reading Hemingway, but I did, several times."A Moveable Feast" was also good for me, in a way, because I have a horrible time remembering who was around at the same time in the literary world. For example, I did not realize Ezra Pound and Hemingway could have run into each other in the street.After I finished this book I felt like reading more Hemingway, but didn't have any on hand, so I started reading a bio of Zelda Fitzgerald, since "Feast" had mentioned the Fitzgeralds somewhat in depth. There are quite a few instances that are mentioned in both books, and I GREATLY enjoy recognizing scenes that Hemingway mentioned. It is not very often that I read a book that enriches something else I'm reading so directly. It's pretty awesome.read more
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The book belongs to what I call 'growing-in-Paris' category, and that's why I pretty much liked it.I'm talking about books describing the life certain writers lived in Paris, while trying to achieve as much as they could in order to be able to provide the art they wanted to do... A generation of writers happened to live/starve in Paris in about the same time: Hemingway, Pound, Fitzgerald, Miller (later?), few other. Paris being the 'cultural capital' of the world, most of the really valuable writers spent years there; I've always been interested in finding out details on their living there... and they all describe it in different works (Hemingway not being very generous with stories on it).read more
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Hemingway at his most charming with anecdotes from his Paris years
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I’ve just spent a lovely sojourn with Ernest Hemingway. Oh, I know he has been deceased for fifty years, but that is of no consequence. You see, he spoke to me. He returned to life once again in his memoir A Moveable Feast. As I read this enjoyable memoir I felt as if he wanted to share stories of a particularly happy time in his life and as we dined at Michaud’s in Paris or downed cocktails at The Closerie des Lilas, the nearest good café when he lived at 113 rue Notre-Dame-des-Champs, Hem shared with me his writing techniques. Especially important was to “Write the truest sentence that you know.” He talked of his friendships with Gertrude Stein and Ezra Pound. His recollections of Ford Madox Ford were particularly amusing as was his road trip with Scott Fitzgerald. Tatie, as his wife called him, displays a delightfully mischievous sense of humor and I could almost detect a sparkle in his eye as he recalled the good times they shared. I got the impression that he regretted that their life together, that the luck which kept the good times coming, came to a conclusion. As Hemingway wrote this, I can’t help but wonder if the underlying sadness I perceived contributed to his death.Would I recommend it…………………Absolutely! I’m willing to bet that when you lift the cover off of this book, Hem will talk to you too. This one will hold a permanent place on my bookshelf.
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A work of fiction masquerading as memoir, or perhaps vice-versa, Hemingway’s sketches tell of life in Paris in the 1920’s and the writers and artists who made that one of the more romantic places and eras. Its hard to believe what Hemingway writes is truth yet it offers insight into many personas such as Stein, Picasso, and Fitzgerald, and perhaps inadvertently Hemingway himself. Good preparation for my own American in Paris experience this summer. I also like Hemingway’s idea of writing one story for each thing you know about. Good advice for my own literary career should it be reborn.
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Beautifully written. Reads like one of his short stories. With a lot of insight into his writing method and his ideas. It introduces another side to Hemingway, and it is a calm, relaxed, goalless novella, which gives a freedom to the reader. A beautiful piece of literature which I and probably everybody else would recommend to any Hemingway fan
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My friend gave me this book right before I left for Paris for the semester, and it gave me an appreciation of both Paris & Hemingway.
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I have to say I enjoyed this book more than his fiction.
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This book, when I first it, really startled me with the sincerity of its author. Hemingway tells a lot about his craft, technique and psychology. I have not seen this level of opennes and straightforwardness in many of modern American writers whose works are still being read today.
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I liked this book because of who wrote it, not because of how well-written it was. I was interested in reading this book because of all the references in it from NEVER ANY END TO PARIS by Enrique Vila-Matas. I like the way Ernest thinks. I enjoyed reading his ideas about people, writing, Paris, and his life in general. I especially enjoyed the last few segments regarding F. Scott Fitzgerald, Zelda, and Ernest falling for another woman and messing his perfect life up with regrets for all. But I did not love the book any more than I loved the way old Ernest died. He did make it interesting however.
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I chose this week to read, while preparing for my vacation at the Hemingway Days festival in Key West by reading Ernest Hemingway's, A Moveable Feast. Set in 1920s Paris, it is a retrospective by Hemingway of his life at that time, married to Hadley and surrounded by fellow ex-pats that ranged from Gertrude Stein to Ezra Pound and to F. Scott Fitzgerald. Almost every page provides an image into life in Paris, and I found myself wandering the rue Cardinal Lemoine or by the Seine, drinking from a small carafe of wine or eating in one of the cafès that Hemingway gathers to write. Perhaps he is at the next table?Although Ernest Hemingway writes in his preface, "If the reader prefers, this book may be regarded as fiction. But there is always the chance that such a book of fiction may throw some light on what has been written as fact." This he relates after he has completed writing A Moveable Feast in 1960, and it is honestly told, no fluff to his descriptions of streets, stores, and life for him and his wife. It is before Hemingway has become the famous writer, and in Paris, he is a struggling writer, being turned down by American magazines, and only being accepted by German publications. Each page is his daily life writing and struggling, living and struggling, and providing for his family. He writes of Hadley in a favorable light, almost sweetly, and she is his supportive wife, and I felt regret from Hemingway. I thought of him writing these events, now an older man living in Cuba, about his younger life in Paris, loyal or insane or sad ex-pats rounding out his circle of friends, and he is unashamedly blunt in his thoughts on each writer or poet that he interacts with.Hemingway is honest in every detail that he shares. If it is a dark day with black clouds, that is how he writes it, with nothing more, nothing less. I was enchanted by that and I was left to my own imagination, as Hemingway would walk the streets to Sylvia Beach's bookshop, Shakespeare and Company. He writes of being provided books to read on credit, and how he and Hadley save to go on trips together, and how much love they had for each other. Together, they played the races, but it never created tensions between them, only people did, he writes. I found it all to be incredibly sad, especially in the final pages as he writes about deception and his first affair, and it drips with sadness, regret for his choices, and my heart broke again. Perhaps I was so sad about these events because Hemingway, shortly after finishing this book, commits suicide. Does he wish for life to be done over again, to make better choices?If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go, for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast. Ernest HemingwayPerhaps I am such a fan for Hemingway and his life that this book touched me so deeply. Or perhaps it is the stark grittiness and beauty of Paris that he shares, and the grief of a writer in the midst of it all, that made me feel his lamentations and remorse? I can say that I read books with small Post-It notes to highlight pages that strike me as touching, funny, brilliant, grieving, and I can only honestly convey to you how I felt about this book by sharing this picture of it with you. I loved this story.
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I read (or rather re-read) A Moveable Feast after reading The Paris Wife. It was interesting to read his perspective forty years later of his years in Paris when he was married to his first wife Hadley. They were poor and little known and Hemingway is somewhat nostalgic about those days yet not in a sentimental way. A Moveable Feast is a collection of vignettes about life in Paris and includes stories about Gertrude Stein and Scott Fitzgerald. His stories about Scott Fitzgerald were the most interesting to me.
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I'm not entirely sure what I think of this book. It's basically a series of essays about Hemingway's early years in Paris, but there's not much of a connection between most of them, and they're not all necessarily in chronological order. But given that I read the book while in Paris, it was enjoyable to read about streets and quarters that I've been in.
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Because our book club's choice for September was a Victorian novelist (ugh) I decided to try Hemingway for the first time. The first two chapters for some reason didn't click, so I started over, and then really enjoyed it. Hemingway's tendency toward run-on sentences can be distracting, but you get so wrapped up in the artistry of his writing that it doesn't really matter.
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"A Moveable Feast" is Hemingway’s final attempt to mold his public persona, but he was hardly the first American author to use fiction as a vehicle for wealth, notoriety, and the construction of a macho public image. As a child of the early 20th century, it is difficult to imagine young Hemingway not being aware of the works of Jack London, a product of a difficult childhood who made his name writing about vigorous, dangerous outdoor life, military action, and sports like boxing. The public persona wasn’t always effective-- President Theodore Roosevelt, another larger-than-life macho contemporary, assailed London as a “nature faker”—but provided a template for the next generation of manly writers, of which Hemingway was the king. Hemingway’s took the mantel to new heights, most notably his achievement of the Nobel Prize, but, with the exception of his time in Paris, largely followed the Jack London path, albeit with the addition of sport hunting and deep sea fishing to the genre. The earlier author’s attempt at memoir was the 1914 "John Barleycorn," which covered virtually all of his life in the first person and identified alcohol and intellectualism as the causes of his bad behavior and downfall. Hemingway’s entry was "A Moveable Feast," which, despite having 20 more years of life and two more marriages than London had enjoyed, focused on Paris while only touching on his failures as a husband, father, and friend. The bulk of the story in "Feast" concerns Hemingway, wife Hadley, and friends as innocent and comely starving bohemians. There is never the slightest hint of marital strife, even though the narrator briefly mentions during the book that the marriage was fated to end in short order. The oblique tension of a story like Hills Like White Elephants, which was published during the time period Hemingway recalls in Feast, is completely absent from their poor, but putatively happy domestic life. They have a son, Bumby, but he makes few appearances across the narrative, and shares billing with the cat F. Puss, who Hemingway describes as Bumby’s babysitter, a startling revelation that is presented in a light-hearted way that doesn’t suggest child neglect. “There were people who said it was dangerous to leave a cat with a baby,” but no harm ever came to either, so it was perfectly fine to do this." Hemingway himself spends little time at home in the book, however, preferring travel to Italy, Spain, and Austria (though he and his young family were broke and subject to going hungry) and to write and hobnob in Parisian cafes. Hemingway was, of course, always the better man in these encounters with individuals some would consider his literary superiors: Ford Maddox Ford was far more arrogant and self-deluded than him, for instance. Fitzgerald was not only a far more pathetic drunk, but had been with only one woman, his wife, who felt that his anatomy was inadequate, two problems narrator Hemingway by implication never had. To boot, he vigorously shoots down Gertrude Stein’s accepting talk of male homosexuals, and essentially breaks with her when her own homosexuality is revealed. Hemingway is stalwart, though: When Pascin offers one of his nubile models to him as a sex partner, the married narrator gallantly declines, and does so with charm. The infidelity that ultimately ruined the marriage was in fact not his fault, but that of, “another rich using the oldest trick there is. It is that an unmarried young woman becomes the temporary best friend of another young woman who is married, goes to live with the husband and wife and then unknowingly, innocently and unrelentingly sets out to marry the husband.”Narrators are virtually always a vicarious stand-in for the reader, but Hemingway made sure of the reader’s sympathy by occasionally shifting into the second person. Significantly, virtually everyone mentioned in Feast save Hadley and Bumby were dead by the time "Feast" was written.
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this book is not at all what i was expecting, it was so much better. when i first picked it up i was expecting more of a plot, when really it was more a string of anecdotes and opinions within a timeframe. the language is beautiful and i finally realize what all the fuss is about. a friend of mine read this book while we were traveling in paris and i only wish i had read it then and traveled to all of those places, too.
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this could range all the way from a two star to a five star depending upon"-- your love of simplistic language, yet creative in its imagery.-- your love of Paris in the 1920s.-- your interest in the members of the lost generation (la generation perdue)-- your interest in literature and the Hemingway influence (grandfather of existentialism in America and the "minimalism" of the 1980s onwards.To me it's a five star.
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Those who have not seen the elephant and lack the courage to go looking for it have no right to criticize Ernest Hemingway, who set out as a young man to find the elephant and get a good long look at the Beast, and then describe it for the rest of us. As a young man he did not yet realize that few people are as brave and as honest as he.He went. He saw. He wrote. He told us all about it -- and scarcely anyone believes him. Those who don't tell the few who do that Papa was a fool and a bad man. So it is in life as it was in "The Old Man and the Sea." Now that the big fish is dead, the little ones come to gnaw on his corpse.Nobody with anything to lose has a friend in this world. The person who has nothing may find one. Papa knew.'A Moveable Feast' is for stargazers everywhere. If you're one of those who dotes on famous people and if, in particular, you dote on members of 'The Lost Generation,' this is the book for you because it shows you what your heroes look like in their underwear.Fans of Ernest will love 'A Moveable Feast.' Fans of Scott and Zelda may hate it. Fans of Gertrude will - - - - Well there's no telling how they'll feel about it, which was always a problem, even for poor old Gert. The only character in the whole set who gets away clean is the lady owns the bookstore and binds up busted heads. Highly recommended.
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I read this because I read The Paris Wife (about Hemingway's first wife Hadley) Hemingway writes about life in Paris; I enjoyed reading this so close to reading The Paris Wife
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This was an enjoyable read. I'm partial to books about Paris, but it was also interesting to imagine all these old, legendary writers, romping around town.
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A must read after reading The Paris Wife :D
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An older Hemingway reminisces fondly about his time in Paris and other European vacation spots trying to make ends meet as a writer, but not as a journalist. These are fun, evocative stories about writing, food and drinking – really some of the most enjoyable activities in Paris, and anywhere in the world for that matter. The sections with F. Scott Fitzgerald are a riot, and the ending of the book is sad as it presages less happy times. The book is written in Hemingway’s peculiar unadorned direct style, in a prose that is economical: he wants to tell us like it is. I liked the book, it reminded me of my student days – we were just as alive and in love with beautiful things in life, but with an ounce of the talent.
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"If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast."In general I'm not a huge fan of Hemingway. I've read For Whom the Bell Tolls, Farewell to Arms, The Old Man and the Sea, The Sun Also Rises and True at First Light, so I have a decent view of his breadth of work. It always seems stilted to me. I feel distant from whatever is happening. The plot is too simple or I don't feel connected to the characters, especially the women, who are apparently only there to serve the men. I've enjoyed some of his books, but wouldn't say I love them. The exception to that is A Moveable Feast, which is interesting because it's the only nonfiction book of his I've read. Hemingway wrote this about his early days as a writer when he was living in Paris with his wife Hadley in the 1920s. He was a struggling artist, spending his days writing in cafes and hanging out with his friends, Joyce, Pound and Fitzgerald to name a few. I read this book shortly after moving back to the states from London. I had visited Paris multiple times while in Europe and the beauty of the city was still fresh in my mind. I'm sure that had a huge impact on my appreciation for the book, just as your personal experiences always have an effect on how you interpret what you're reading. I don't think this is a perfect book. Many critique it for the rosy view of Hemingway and negative view of many others. But to me that's expected... Hemingway wrote it, take his words with a big grain of salt. Of course he's going to make himself look good and idealize that time period. The thing that hooked me is his description of the places and the people. It made me want to be there on the Left Bank perusing books in the Shakespeare and Co. or taking a road trip with Fitzgerald. Everything felt so real to me. It was the first time I felt completely drawn in to one of his books and I think it's because he was actually connected to that life, so he couldn't help pouring those feelings into the book.
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I really enjoyed this book. I loved all the name-dropping and gossip about writers Hemingway spent time with in Paris. I'm a big fan of F. Scott Fitzgerald, so the stories about him and crazy Zelda were especially interesting to me.
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"Limned in acid" is how one biographer described Hemingway's last and maybe best book, and indeed it is. Yet A Moveable Feast also captures Hemingway's extraordinary sensitivity to his internal and external environment, his fine sense of humor, and his authentic love for his first wife Hadley.
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Will rate this after a re-read of the classic version (possibly back to back with a re-read of this version depending on the time-table). Oh- seems like it is already rated by me. It is not differentiating between this edition and the classic one.
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the not so gruff side of Hemingway; a good, easy read; made me hungry and thirsty
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Instead of doing my shopping, I spent a couple of days this week in Paris, with Hemingway in the 1920's. Oh what a time I had! In "A Moveable Feast" Hemingway recalls his days in Paris, with friends like Gertrude Stein, Ezra Pound, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Zelda. What I wouldn't give to have actually have been a fly on the wall. Sylvia Beach, owner of Shakespeare and Company, a wonderful bookstore, had a lending library, where Ernest got many of the books he carried with him on his many travels.I love the way he writes. To me it is just like listening to a real person.As he tries to write and sell his stories, he also basks in the wonder of Paris, and all the wonderful friends he made during his time there. His struggles with money and drink become more apparent as time moves on, but still he writes. His son Bumby sounds like a precocious and charming little boy, who he seems to have adored. His first wife Hadley stood with him through lean times and they seemed happiest when they had the least.The descriptions of the people, the sounds and sights of Paris made for a wonderful trip. What a better way to spend the week before Christmas...Wish you were here!This book came from my local Library!Happiest of Holidays to one and all.....
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Collected and published posthumously this book contains fiction and non-fiction from Hemingway's time spent in Paris.
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When it comes to his accounts of F. Scott Fitzgerald, I can't help but wonder if he is competing here by offering up some unsavoury details: about the drunken hypochondriac F. Scott Fitzgerald taking to his bedcovers with worry he'd contracted consumption, about his trip with Hem to the Louvre to view classical statues to reassure himself he was of 'normal' size in manly respects, and of course Scott's troubles with Zelda. After revealing all this, he quickly sums up in a sentence or two the great and reliable friend the sober Scott was, and continued to be, for so many years.
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Okay, don't laugh, but "A Moveable Feast" is the first Hemingway I've ever read. I don't know what I was expecting but I had the vague idea it involved French food.Actually, the book is a collection of stories about Hemingway's time in Paris, when he was just getting started in his writing career. He met a lot of recognizable people and wrote about them in here, and his anecdotes are interesting and insightful and, more often than not, FUNNY, which surprised me. I totally did not expect to lol while reading Hemingway, but I did, several times."A Moveable Feast" was also good for me, in a way, because I have a horrible time remembering who was around at the same time in the literary world. For example, I did not realize Ezra Pound and Hemingway could have run into each other in the street.After I finished this book I felt like reading more Hemingway, but didn't have any on hand, so I started reading a bio of Zelda Fitzgerald, since "Feast" had mentioned the Fitzgeralds somewhat in depth. There are quite a few instances that are mentioned in both books, and I GREATLY enjoy recognizing scenes that Hemingway mentioned. It is not very often that I read a book that enriches something else I'm reading so directly. It's pretty awesome.
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The book belongs to what I call 'growing-in-Paris' category, and that's why I pretty much liked it.I'm talking about books describing the life certain writers lived in Paris, while trying to achieve as much as they could in order to be able to provide the art they wanted to do... A generation of writers happened to live/starve in Paris in about the same time: Hemingway, Pound, Fitzgerald, Miller (later?), few other. Paris being the 'cultural capital' of the world, most of the really valuable writers spent years there; I've always been interested in finding out details on their living there... and they all describe it in different works (Hemingway not being very generous with stories on it).
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