Review of “A Moveable Feast”

“You belong to me and all Paris belongs to me and I belong to this notebook and this pencil.”

Ernest Hemingway wrote of his time in Paris in the 1920s. This was a time of painters, writers and the Lost Generation between World War I and World War II. While Hemingway and his wife Hadley are poor at the time (as he claims in the memoir)  they enjoy good food and the kindness of others to get good books. Many of these creative minds are wonderful people personally, as Hemingway tells us of Ezra Pound, tiresome and unnerving as well. We get a look inside what these friends of his were really like in the way only Hemingway can do.
I wanted to re-read this after going through passages here and there over the years. The best part of Hemingway, to me, is his life. His style of writing is so interesting when he’s talking about himself and people he comes into contact with. His descriptions of physical features, conversations and the way he feels about these people is extraordinary. You don’t even have to know all of their works to get the idea of them as people who are intermingling in a play, of sorts, during this time in Paris.
For anyone who wants to read Hemingway in a quick and dirty way, I highly recommend this. I know some have been scarred by their high school assignment to read Old Man and the Sea but getting to know Hemingway is really rewarding. It’s all in his style that makes the reading so good. He doesn’t mess around with his readers – he tells you the story as straight as he can and it’s totally worth taking the time to read his short memoirs of Paris.
Best line of the whole book, when describing an Wyndham Lewis, “I do not think I had ever seen a nastier-looking man…. Under the black hat, when I had first seen them, the eyes had been those of an unsuccessful rapist.” Only Hemingway can explain things like this, bless him.

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4 thoughts on “Review of “A Moveable Feast”

  1. Andi May 23, 2012 / 2:30 pm

    I was turned off of Hem for years after I read THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA in 9th grade. However, this one brought me back into the loop. Seriously loved "meeting" my fave Modernist writers in this book.

  2. Suzanne May 23, 2012 / 2:49 pm

    I know what you mean. I couldn't stand him either after we had to read that book. Once I got into his biography and this book, I realized there was so much more to him.

  3. Dragonfly Daydreams June 18, 2012 / 10:34 am

    This is in my TBR pile – I think it has just moved up closer to the top!

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