The Old Man and the Sea and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Buy New
$6.78
Qty:1
  • List Price: $12.00
  • Save: $5.22 (44%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
The Old Man and The Sea has been added to your Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

The Old Man and The Sea Paperback – May 5, 1995


See all 9 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Paperback, May 5, 1995
$6.78
$2.08 $0.01
$6.78 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. In Stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.


Frequently Bought Together

The Old Man and The Sea + For Whom the Bell Tolls + The Sun Also Rises
Price for all three: $24.86

Buy the selected items together

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; Reissue edition (May 5, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684801221
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684801223
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.4 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,039 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #733 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Here, for a change, is a fish tale that actually does honor to the author. In fact The Old Man and the Sea revived Ernest Hemingway's career, which was foundering under the weight of such postwar stinkers as Across the River and into the Trees. It also led directly to his receipt of the Nobel Prize in 1954 (an award Hemingway gladly accepted, despite his earlier observation that "no son of a bitch that ever won the Nobel Prize ever wrote anything worth reading afterwards"). A half century later, it's still easy to see why. This tale of an aged Cuban fisherman going head-to-head (or hand-to-fin) with a magnificent marlin encapsulates Hemingway's favorite motifs of physical and moral challenge. Yet Santiago is too old and infirm to partake of the gun-toting machismo that disfigured much of the author's later work: "The brown blotches of the benevolent skin cancer the sun brings from its reflection on the tropic sea were on his cheeks. The blotches ran well down the sides of his face and his hands had the deep-creased scars from handling heavy fish on the cords." Hemingway's style, too, reverts to those superb snapshots of perception that won him his initial fame:
Just before it was dark, as they passed a great island of Sargasso weed that heaved and swung in the light sea as though the ocean were making love with something under a yellow blanket, his small line was taken by a dolphin. He saw it first when it jumped in the air, true gold in the last of the sun and bending and flapping wildly in the air.
If a younger Hemingway had written this novella, Santiago most likely would have towed the enormous fish back to port and posed for a triumphal photograph--just as the author delighted in doing, circa 1935. Instead his prize gets devoured by a school of sharks. Returning with little more than a skeleton, he takes to his bed and, in the very last line, cements his identification with his creator: "The old man was dreaming about the lions." Perhaps there's some allegory of art and experience floating around in there somewhere--but The Old Man and the Sea was, in any case, the last great catch of Hemingway's career. --James Marcus

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 Hemingway as one of the greatest literary lights of the twentieth 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.

Customer Reviews

Santiago (the old man) was a great Spanish fisherman striving on catching fish for money.
Rachel
Hemingway's original style and the characters in this book make it a very good book to read.
Eileen Maxwell
I finished reading it in a little over an hour, but in that hour i read a really good book.
Kalan

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

169 of 189 people found the following review helpful By Zack Davisson HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 5, 2004
Format: Paperback
Aside from a few short stories, "The Old Man and the Sea" is the first Hemingway book that I have read. Of course, I am familiar with his persona, and the idea of the "Hemingway man," and was well aware as his stature as one of the greatest writers of modern times. But I had never read his books.

Wow. I mean, really. Wow. With "The Old Man and the Sea," it is so easy to see why Hemingway was awarded the Nobel Prize, and why he deserves all of his accolades. This short novel is fierce, full of vibrant energy and humanity, all the while being a slave to the realities of finite power, of the inability to struggle against something greater than yourself. Of course, this is the standard "man against nature" story, but it is told with such craft that even cliches ring true.

Santiago is a fully-realized character. His strength of will is all that holds together his failing body. The great marlin that he struggles with is like a true fish, lacking personality or anthropomorphism, but just a powerful beast that does not want to die. There is no Moby Dick animosity, and the fish is under the water for the majority of the struggle. All of it, the sharks, the flying fish, the small boat and the ocean, each is what it is, lacking metaphor and saying that life itself is enough. No need to wax poetic.

I never knew a story a little over 120 pages could pack such a punch.
6 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
41 of 43 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 14, 2002
Format: Paperback
I feel compelled to write a few words for Hemingway here after reading some of the negative reviews here. It seems that many of the people got bored of the book because there are no sucessive excitements throughout the story; and many just thought that this was merely one of the many books which has murmurred throughout on a boring theme---fishing.
But I think some of the commentators here have missed some important points. Firstly, Santiago is an Old Man as well as an experienced fisherman. It will be quite absurd to expect such an old experienced fisherman to become over-excited and hyper-sensitive because of some petty wounds or expected struggles with the fish. And as we all know one of the most important quality of a fisherman is to stay calm whether one has been waiting in idle for many hours or one is trying desperately to deal with a struggling fish. I think it is just unjust to expect Santiago to behave in a way that a younger college boy would do to make fun of himself and cheer up the audience in a Hollywood comedy. Anyway, you would not really expect to read some exaggerated sensational treatment of the theme by Hemingway, hear Santiago screaming because a few bloods came out of his slightly hurt right hand, or whine helplessly because the big fish was chopped off bit by bit by the sharks, would you?
Furthermore, some remarked that, despite whatever they have said negatively, they were still inspired by the theme, that if you persist on pursuing something, even if others think you are unlucky as well as incapable to achieve that, at the end of the day you will achieve that very goal.
Read more ›
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
63 of 72 people found the following review helpful By Robert Moore HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on November 10, 2002
Format: Paperback
When Hemingway wrote THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA, he was no longer the writer he had been twenty years earlier. His talent was declining, he had over the past ten years written far more bad books than good ones, and was very much the worse for wear from the hard life he had lived. But somehow, he managed at this late stage in his life to produced one final masterpiece, and one of his very finest novels.
The story is one of Hemingway's simplest. All of his books are simple on the surface. THE SUN ALSO RISES is very simply told, but it contains a wealth of psychological and interpersonal complexity beneath the simple narrative. THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA is truly simple, a story about a simple man, with simple ideas, with a simple life, with a simple, elemental encounter with the natural world: he catches a massive marlin that he battles unsuccessfully to bring to market. It is a tale of success in the midst of failure, of quiet stoicism and courage, and refusing to give in to the challenges the world throws at him. Most of all, it is a story about courage.
The tale that is told is so clearly told that a very young child can understand it. It is so marvelously told that an adult can marvel over it. When my daughter was six, I read this to her, and he loved it (even developing a child's fascination with Joe DiMaggio).
Although the Nobel Prize is given to a writer for his or her work as a whole, and not just one book, it may well be that without this book Hemingway would not have won the Prize. His best work had appeared in the 1920s, and much of his work of the 1930s and virtually all of his work in the 1940s had been far, far below the quality of the early short stories, A FAREWELL TO ARMS, and THE SUN ALSO RISES. THE OLD MAN AND THE SEA was his great comeback, and it is quite likely that it was the book that made the difference in his being chosen as the recipient of the award.
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
19 of 24 people found the following review helpful By ardent_lover on March 2, 2002
Format: Paperback
The Old Man and The Sea is perhaps one of Ernest Hemingway's finest achievements. Here you will find the lean descriptive prose that made him one of the finest writer's of the twentieth century.
It tells the story of a fisherman who is down on his luck, but whose spirit is strong as the tropical winds that have tanned his skin and the sun that has made weak his eyes. He is devoted to the sea and knows all of its wildness and subtle moods. He goes out alone one day without his sidekick boy companion, because the boy's family has forbidden him to help his teacher for he has bad luck.
He hooks a Marlin, a huge mythical Marlin, the kind that fishermen only dream of catching. And the fish drags him out deeper and deeper into the ocean, farther than he's ever traveled. The battle is fierce and his hands are even bloodied as he ties himself to the rope and the fish in a struggle that is somehow symbolic of man's eternal quest to gain control over natural forces.
I would say more, however, Hemingway has done such a fine job that I suggest you read and read this wonderful tale. The ending is of course classic Hemingway. And it was for this book that Hemingway won the Nobel Prize for literature.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?