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We Belgians celebrate the anniversary of the inauguration of King Leopold I in 1831 today, and I have been doing so by sitting in the garden, ignoring the current internet slapfight, and reading the gripping account of one man's battle with a huge fish. (And other things too, but that was the book I finished.)

It is very good. Hemingway must be rather easy to pastiche - those sentences that have two or more clauses linked by "and", moving from statis to dynamic: "Everything about him was old except his eyes and they were the same color as the sea and were cheerful and undefeated." But somehow he gets it just right; as I sat in the garden reading, I was very much out on a small boat in the Gulf of Mexico, wrestling with the marlin, exhaustedly accepting the victory of the sharks. This is, believe it or not, the first Hemingway I have ever read, but it won't be the last.

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
bellinghman
Jul. 21st, 2009 04:25 pm (UTC)
It is good, isn't it. I think we did this for school, one time, and it showed how great it is by not being heartily loathed by the end of the process.
chickenfeet2003
Jul. 21st, 2009 04:51 pm (UTC)
It's my favourite Hemingway. In fact it may be the only Hemingway that I could read now without an overwhelming urge to hurl it across the room. It is also one of a small number of novels that I have read in both French and English.
mizkit
Jul. 21st, 2009 09:58 pm (UTC)
I <3 Hemingway. :)
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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