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Green Hills of Africa (Scribner Classics) Hardcover – Deluxe Edition, April 15, 1998

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Editorial Reviews


"If he were never to write again, his name would live as long as the English language, for Green Hills of Africa takes its place beside his other works on that small shelf in our libraries which we reserve for the classics" Observer "This book is an expression of a deep enjoyment and appreciation of being alive - in Africa. There is more to it than hunting; it is the feeling of the dew on the grass in the morning, the shape and colour and smell of the country, the companionship of friends ... and the feeling that time has ceased to matter" TLS --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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6 1.5-hour cassettes --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

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Product Details

  • Series: Scribner Classics
  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; Classic Edition edition (April 15, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 068484463X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684844633
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (89 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #522,389 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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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

55 of 58 people found the following review helpful By Lloyd S. Thomas on June 8, 2000
Format: Paperback
Hem is hunting both big game and big literature in "Green Hills." On this 1933-34 African safari, his jovial, Socratic drinking pal "Pop" is actually Phillip Percival the famous white hunter who conducted Theodore Roosevelt on his first African safari. As a young man, Hemingway owned a copy of TR's book "African Game Trails," and it is undoubtedly one of the reasons he went on this safari, which was financed to the tune of $25,000 Depression dollars by his wife Pauline's uncle Gus, part owner of Richard Hudnut cosmetics. Further evidence of Hem's fascination with Africa can be seen in the way Jake Barnes teases Robert Cohn in "The Sun Also Rises." In chapter two, Jake says, " Did you ever think about going to British East Africa to shoot?" Cohn's lack of enthusiasm for an immediate trek to Mombassa seals his fate as a jerk. "Green Hills" vindicates Hem's real aficion for hunting--filled with long descriptions of the arduous and sometimes futile tracking of game, not just celebratory "kills." Finally, the best preparation for reading "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber" and "The Snows of Kilimanjaro" is to hike and sweat through these 300 pages of African "country." The long, crescent-horned sable which Hem was painstakingly stalking at the end of "Green Hills" never turned up. But instead, the experience of his African safari, was distilled into those two incredible stories--one about a coward who gets a chance to redeem himself and the other about a washed-up writer whose approaching death stimulates him to dream about--and the reader to enjoy--the fiction he never got to actually write. Unless you've got a rich uncle or wife, this is as close as you'll get to an East African safari, and it is very, very fine.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Ein Kunde on September 5, 2000
Format: Paperback
"Green Hills of Africa" was Hemingway's first non-fiction book, written after a 1933 trip to Eastern Africa (Kenya, Tanzania). It went a long way in establishing Hemingway's reputation as a hunter and adventurer. Though non-fiction it has the organization of a Hemingway novel and reads much like his other works. His descriptions of the landscape, local people, other hunters, and especially animals, hunting, and killing are superb. Hemingway also shares, mostly as dialogue, his thoughts on life, war, fate, and notably literature and the literary life. His often-quoted idea of all American literature being descended from one book by Mark Twain is presented here, as are his thoughts on how America destroys its writers. Some knowledge of Eastern Africa (such as a basic history, a guidebook, an encyclopedia article) might be useful as Hemingway often does provide much introductory material. With "Green Hills of Africa" Hemingway follows in the footsteps of Theodore Roosevelt's "African Game Trails"; both did much to popularize among Americans the idea of recreational travel in Africa. Hemingway went on to write two fictional stories set in Africa: "The Snows of Kilimanjaro" and "The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber". A good book, moreso for fans of Papa and those with an interest in Africa.
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32 of 38 people found the following review helpful By wesley pryor on January 28, 2001
Format: Paperback
Much credit is given 'Papa' for his writings on Africa. I can only attribute this to the fact that he is a famous author and more people have read his Africa books/two short stories more than any others. Much like Roosevelts game trails this book is a chronicle of Hemingways two month safari. And like Teddys book comes across as just that. After all they only both went on one safari. If you are really interested in reading about African big game hunting there are two books that communicate the vibrancy and feel of hunting dangerous game in Africa better than Hemingway or Roosevelt. Death in the long grass by Peter Hathaway Capstick and Pondoro by John Taylor are my two favorites. Both are men who spent their lives living and hunting in Africa. Capstick as a Proffesional hunter and game warden in the latter half of this century until 1975, and Taylor as an Ivory poacher from the 1920-30's(?) to the late 40's. If you are anti-hunting forget it but if you are in-between and looking for something more on Africa then Please take a look. I am not saying that Hemingway is bad, it's just that in my opinion Taylor and Capstick bring African hunting alive in a way Hemingway can't touch in the best parts of Green Hills. Hemingway may be the master when it comes to other types of literature, but when it comes to describing hunting dangerous game in Africa Taylor and Capstick reign supreme.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Frank J. Stone on October 8, 2006
Format: Paperback
In this rare non-fiction work from Ernest Hemingway he brings to life a month long hunting expedition that he spent with his wife Pauline in Africa in nineteen-thirty-three, but he writes it in the true Hemingway tradition. Rather than having it read like a documentary he writes it in the form of a novel.

Both entertaining and exciting it makes the reader hungry for the hunt. At times there is a bit of embellishment, such as making a clean kill on a Rhino at three-hundred yards with a Springfield rifle, (probably with open sights) in chapter four. Such probable exaggerations can be overlooked when we read his descriptions of the land and of the Masai and feel the remorse in his heart after wounding and losing a magnificent Sable Antelope to the jackals.

It's my opinion that Green Hills of Africa is one of the finest hunting stories that has ever been written. Not for the sheer content of the story itself, but for the style, for Hemingway's style, ... and for the way that he recounts a true life adventure in the style of prose that has always proven so riveting in his fiction.
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