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The Fifth Column and Four Stories of The Spanish Civil War Paperback – May 26, 1998

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Ernest Hemingway did more to influence the style of English prose than any other writer of his time. Publication of The Sun Also Rises and A Farewell to Arms immediately established him as one of the greatest literary lights of the 20th century. His classic novella The Old Man and the Sea won the Pulitzer Prize in 1953. Hemingway was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954. He died in 1961.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 154 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; 1 edition (May 26, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684839261
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684839264
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.4 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #932,865 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Brian Douglas on December 30, 2004
Format: Paperback
I wasn't sure about a Hemingway play. Sure, Papa is one of my favorite fiction writers, but could he write for the stage as well as he wrote stories?

The Fifth Column proved to be every bit as good as Hemingway's best fiction. The deep characters and fascinating, realistic sequence of events are brilliantly written. The reader can picture the drama as if it was being acted out before him.

I've recommended this book to several people; some are hesitant to read it because the story's setting (the Spanish Civil War) doesn't interest them. But in Hemingway's fiction, the setting is not as important as how people and the things that happen to them are communicated on the page. He was a truly master writer, able to make characters and situations fascinating regardless of what the reader thought of the story's setting.

One suggestion: I read the four short stories before I read the play, and I strongly recommend that sequence. Reading the stories first enables you to see transition of the events from real life to Hemingway's mind, then to the page, and finally to the stage. Seeing this transition will give the reader an appreciation for Hemingway's ability to so brilliantly put into words his own observations and experiences.

If you are a Hemingway fan, or if you just like good fiction, it doesn't get much better than this.
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By Rebecca Luna on December 28, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is one of Hemingway's lesser known works. A wondeful gift for those interested in his writings of the Spanish Civil War.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By SG on October 16, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This play and these four stories are exactly what I was looking for when I picked this up. Hemingway is no better than when he is in Spain and especially when he is at war in Spain. I had not known about the play before but it was full of the same characters, same relationships that we see him examining in all his work from this time.

This one is worth picking up, whether you are new to Hemingway, or looking for another gem. He rarely disappoints and certainly doesn't here.
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