Katherine Adams, September 28, 2008 (view all comments by Katherine Adams)
I bought this novel for two reasons. First, to exercise my right to read during Banned Books Week -- and this novel is one of the 20th century's most challenged. Second, to see if Hemingway is still worth reading.
To my surprise, Hemingway's sparse prose painted a vivid picture of the creative types -- and the places they wandered -- through Europe in the 1920s. I can't imagine bringing the locations to life so well without living there.
The characters -- for the most part, an unlikable group, portray people we've all met or known at some point in our lives. It's a credit to Hemingway that a reader can dislike or root for Jake, the war-scarred narrator; Lady Ashley, the woman who uses men and discards them far too easily; or Robert Cohn, a hanger-on stupidly in love with Lady Ashley, who makes it clear he's out of touch with life in general.
To say that "The Sun Also Rises" has no plot misses the greatness of this book -- Hemingway timelessly captures people of all generations considered "lost," and of all places that can still be found.
Hemingway is certainly most worthy of reading today, because he manages to capture and report slices of life we might not ever imagine.
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lavafrog, March 1, 2007 (view all comments by lavafrog)
Although this book may seem downright unimaginative at first glance, it is truly a work of art when examined in a historical light.
The Sun Also Rises was written after World War One. Before the onset of WWI, Americans were promised that it would be the "war to end all wars," and that its end would bring peace and democracy the world over.
When this promise was not fulfilled, many people began to feel disenchanted with the world; the authors among this group were known as the Lost Generation, to which Hemmingway belonged. He captures this sense of bleak isolation with his writing style--it's terse and as "un-flowery" as you can get. He conveyed the hopelessness of the Lost Generation through the fruitlessness of the relationships in The Sun Also Rises, and uses blunt language and dialogue *on purpose* to do so.
It's a book you read when you want to think--not when you want excitement!
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joedoc33, February 24, 2007 (view all comments by joedoc33)
I didn't have trouble with the dialogue, but your right... it has no plot. basically the book is a really bad reality show, really really bad.
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jotajota, August 16, 2006 (view all comments by jotajota)
This novel was okay but I had trouble with it. It got very confusing at times with the dialogue. It also seems to me that there is no plot. I seriously didn't understand when the rising action, falling action or climax was. It was unclear to me. I frankly thought this book was boring and I'm sorry but I wouldn't recommend it to you if you are looking for a good book to read!
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Scribner Book Company -
Hemingway's first bestselling novel, the story of a group of Americans and English on a sojourn from Paris to Paloma, evokes in poignant detail, life among the expatriates on Paris's Left Bank during the 1920s and conveys in brutally realistic descriptions the power and danger of bullfighting in Spain.
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