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A Moveable Feast Hardcover – Deluxe Edition, October 1, 1996


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; Classic Edition edition (October 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684833638
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684833637
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (498 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #149,958 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

In the preface to A Moveable Feast, Hemingway remarks casually that "if the reader prefers, this book may be regarded as fiction"--and, indeed, fact or fiction, it doesn't matter, for his slim memoir of Paris in the 1920s is as enchanting as anything made up and has become the stuff of legend. Paris in the '20s! Hemingway and his first wife, Hadley, lived happily on $5 a day and still had money for drinks at the Closerie des Lilas, skiing in the Alps, and fishing trips to Spain. On every corner and at every café table, there were the most extraordinary people living wonderful lives and telling fantastic stories. Gertrude Stein invited Hemingway to come every afternoon and sip "fragrant, colorless alcohols" and chat admid her great pictures. He taught Ezra Pound how to box, gossiped with James Joyce, caroused with the fatally insecure Scott Fitzgerald (the acid portraits of him and his wife, Zelda, are notorious). Meanwhile, Hemingway invented a new way of writing based on this simple premise: "All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence you know."

Hemingway beautifully captures the fragile magic of a special time and place, and he manages to be nostalgic without hitting any false notes of sentimentality. "This is how Paris was in the early days when we were very poor and very happy," he concludes. Originally published in 1964, three years after his suicide, A Moveable Feast was the first of his posthumous books and remains the best. --David Laskin --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

This restored version of Hemingway's posthumously published memoir has been revised to reflect the author's original intentions. The result is less a fluid narrative than an academic exercise, with the bulk of the story—Hemingway's travels, escapades, encounters with other writers like F. Scott Fitzgerald—followed by material read by his son and grandson, and some additional sketches and fragments excluded from the final draft. John Bedford Lloyd is faced with the burden of providing a passable version of Hemingway's voice and largely succeeds, but it's much more satisfying to listen to Hemingway's son Patrick, and his grandson Seán, who, in addition to sharing their own reminiscences, offer a hint of what Papa himself might have sounded like. A Scribner hardcover. (July)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

More About the Author

Ernest Hemingway ranks as the most famous of twentieth-century American writers; like Mark Twain, Hemingway is one of those rare authors most people know about, whether they have read him or not. The difference is that Twain, with his white suit, ubiquitous cigar, and easy wit, survives in the public imagination as a basically, lovable figure, while the deeply imprinted image of Hemingway as rugged and macho has been much less universally admired, for all his fame. Hemingway has been regarded less as a writer dedicated to his craft than as a man of action who happened to be afflicted with genius. When he won the Nobel Prize in 1954, Time magazine reported the news under Heroes rather than Books and went on to describe the author as "a globe-trotting expert on bullfights, booze, women, wars, big game hunting, deep sea fishing, and courage." Hemingway did in fact address all those subjects in his books, and he acquired his expertise through well-reported acts of participation as well as of observation; by going to all the wars of his time, hunting and fishing for great beasts, marrying four times, occasionally getting into fistfights, drinking too much, and becoming, in the end, a worldwide celebrity recognizable for his signature beard and challenging physical pursuits.

Customer Reviews

Surrounded by such greats as Gertrude Stein, Ezra Pound, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Hemingway shone as a young writer moving up.
Laurel-Rain Snow
The picture he paints of Paris gives you a vivid depiction of the time and people living their, makes it a fascinating reading experience.
J. Bayon
I enjoyed the photographs that were included in this edition as well as the examples of Hemingway's revisions that completed the book.
gomarnie

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

378 of 386 people found the following review helpful By Barron Laycock HALL OF FAME on August 3, 2000
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Whenever friends ask me why, at my age, I still love Hemingway, I smile and think about this book. They say "Hemingway' and conjure up familiar visions of the older, bloated and blighted boozer bragging about his macho accomplishments in the world of war and sports, while I consider the young Hemingway in Paris. I am thinking of a much younger, intellectually virile man, someone far more alert, aware and alive; Hemingway as a `moveable feast' strolling deliberately through the streets of a rain-swept Paris on a quiet Monday morning, heading to a café for some café au lait to begin his long day's labor.
In this single, slim tome Hemingway beautifully and unforgettably evokes a world of beauty and innocence now so utterly lost and irretrievable both to himself, through his fame, alcohol, and dissipation, but also to us, for Paris as she was in the 1920s was a place made to order for the lyrical descriptive songs he sings about her in this remembrance; endlessly interesting, instantly unforgettable, and also accessible to the original "starving young artist types" so well depicted here. As anyone visiting Paris today knows, that magical time and place has utterly vanished. Tragically, Paris is just another city these days.
Yet this is a book that unforgettably captures the essence of what the word 'romance' means, and does so in the spare and laconic style that Hemingway developed while sitting in the bistros and watching as the world in all its colors and hues flowed by him. The stories he tells are filled with the kinds of people one usually meets only in novels, yet because of who they were and who they later became in the world of arts and letters, it is hard to doubt the veracity or honesty he uses to such advantage here.
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276 of 286 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Leary on July 19, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This book is Ernest Hemingway's reminisce about his life in Paris in the 1920s and the literary figures he knew, such as Gertrude Stein, Ford Maddox Ford, Ezra Pound, and F. Scott Fitzgerald. It was left unfinished at the time of Hemingway's death in 1961 and originally published in 1964, edited by his fourth and last wife, Mary. This new "restored" version presents the same book as re-edited by Hemingway's grandson Sean.

The original book is a highly-regarded literary work of art, leaving open the question of why the world needs a new version. The one and only advantage is the inclusion of new, previously unpublished chapters included after the main text, called "Additional Paris Sketches." Anything new written by Hemingway is always welcome.

The problem is Sean Hemingway's editing and the motivation behind it. In his Introduction, he would have us believe Mary somehow wrecked Hemingway's vision of the book and he has now reshuffled the chapters to reflect what his grandfather would have really wanted. Forty-five years after the original publication, Sean writes with what seems to me unusually strong venom at Mary and what he sees as her agenda in making her edits: "The extensive edits Mary Hemingway made to this text seem to have served her own personal relationship with the writer as his fourth and final wife, rather than the interests of the book, or of the author, who comes across in the posthumous first edition as something of an unknowing victim, which he clearly was not." Sean needed to provide some sort of rationale for the new edition, and this is what he would have us believe: the original book reflected Mary's wishes, not Ernest's.

But since the manuscript was left unfinished when Hemingway died, no one knows what he really would have wanted.
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176 of 182 people found the following review helpful By William Apt on August 26, 2009
Format: Hardcover
The relative merits of the two versions aside, the restored edition lacks the charm of the original. One can say what one wishes about the editing of the original, but whoever edited it did a beautiful job: an incomplete and at times awkward and rambling manuscript was fashioned into a finished work of art. The spirit of Hemingway's intent is just better conveyed by the original. For example, Sean Hemingway takes issue with the change to the introductory note to the chapter entitled "Scott Fitzgerald" as it appears in the original. Mr. Hemingway claims that, as edited, it takes an unwarranted swipe at Fitzgerald. But that is exactly what the restored edition does: in not one new portion is Fitzgerald portrayed as anything but a flawed personality - a talented drunk, a bumbler, with silly ideas and habits, dominated by Zelda. Another aspect of the new edition I find unsettling is that the restored portions more often than not reveal a nastier Hemingway. And insofar as it attempting to portray an even more sympathetic Hadley, I disagree. The original quite poetically tells us all we need to know. The restored version merely states the obvious - tediously and at length. I first read the original edition when I was in college and loved it. I still do. I suppose the restored version has its scholarly value, but I would not recommend it to an impressionable young person as a lovely introduction to the world of the Lost Generation.
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106 of 110 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 9, 1997
Format: Hardcover
There are three perfect little books in 20th century English literature: The Good Soldier, by Ford, The Moviegoer, by Percy, and this sparse narrative written in Hemingway's familiar and still powerful limpid prose. There are descriptions here of many literary figures in Paris during the twenties and the famous cuts at Ford and Fitzgerald, but these are not reasons to read this book. You read this book to hear Hemingway speak to you with his guard down, as you cannot otherwise hear him except in the early Nick Adams stories. He is sitting at his typewriter in Ketchum, his great gifts chased from him by alcohol and hubris, and he remembers when he still had it, when he was poor and cold and hungry and he had Hadley, before he became Hemingway, and he types slow, each word pulled from the emptiness to become the next inevitable perfect word, and his words are the shroud over his loss, his bitterness, his grievous fault. This book was not published in Hemingway's lifetime. It was not written for us
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