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on July 30, 2017
Like many, I love reading Hemingway. I was a little hesitant to pay the cost of this collection of stories, but after reading it I love it. This is a collectible book, with a nice binding and hardcover. It has some stories displayed with several versions of the same story, with pencil lines through sections he scratched out. It provides a fascinating look into the mind of one of the truly great writers. Viewing the way he edited and rewrote stories as he tweaked and polished them, makes me admire Hemingway all the more, seeing what a true craftsman he was. I've read that he worked very hard at his writing, and this book gives us all a peak into that world he worked within, molding and shaping his stories to create what we have come to know of his works. I love this book.
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on July 4, 2016
Hemingway is a master of putting you not only in the physical space of the story (what it looks, sounds, smells, tastes like) but also lulling your emotions to the required state. His stories tend to be "slice of life" narratives and with no moral takeaways, simply the experience of being there.

The book contains 70 stories ranging from 2-30 pages. Most are in the 5-10 page range.
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VINE VOICEon August 14, 2017
I thoroughly enjoyed this collection of Hemingway’s Short Stories. It’s nice to have all the old favorites and a few more in an accessible collection.
Hemingway’s short stories are some of my favorite works of literature. I’ve always enjoyed his novels. But my favorite Hemingway works are the short stories. “A Clean And Well Lit Place” “My Old Man” The Nick Adams stories “The Short Happy Life of Francis Macombre” they sum up Hemingway for me. So I enjoyed this book over the summer, taking it with me on my vacation to Italy, France and Spain. The classics are all here, and then there are less familiar stories, some previously unpublished, some unfinished. I found it interesting that the last story in the book “The Strange Country” brings you back to the beginning of Hemingway’s career. In this story, Hemingway revisits the lost manuscripts and the devastation he felt when he found they were all missing. I keep hoping they show up at a Paris flea market.
It's a thick book. Some reviewers complain of the small print, and the paper. I don’t really know how they could have done it differently. I enjoy the paper it is printed on, the tactile comfort of it. The print is small. There isn’t really any other way you are going to get all the material in a single volume. I suppose one could order the kindle version and expand the print to their desirability, or buy a magnifying glass.
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on October 6, 2017
Some were wonderful and some were no more than an afterthought. But...it's Hemingway, how can you resist. You can see the bones for some of his famous novels in a few of these short stories.I liked those the best.Several were very gorey & visceral (literally) and if you re an animal lover, very upsetting.
The beautifully written, but uninteresting ones make you realize how hard writing a best seller really is
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on July 10, 2016
Hemingway has a style of writing that transcends generations. This is a nice complete short story collection.

I had read somewhere that much of Hemingway's early works were lost by his wife at that time on a train trip to meet him. She not only lost the original copies but the carbons as well. What a travesty. I would love to have read a complete collection of ALL of his works, but at least we have what came after that loss.
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on August 24, 2012
The core of this three-part collection is "The First Forty-nine", a compilation of stories that Hemingway selected and published in 1938. While the first four stories in Part I--including the famous `The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber' and `The Snows of Kilimanjaro'--were new to this collection, Hemingway cherry-picked the remaining 45 stories in Part I from "Three Stories and Ten Poems" (1923), "In Our Time" (1925 and 1930), "Men Without Women" (1927), and "Winner Take Nothing" (1933). Meanwhile, Part II has 14 stories that Hem published in books and magazines subsequent to "The First Forty-nine". Finally, Part III contains six stories unpublished in Hem's lifetime and that first appeared in this Finca Vigia Edition.

There are some tremendous stories in this collection. My favorites are `The Undefeated' (from MWW), `A Way You'll Never Be' (from WTN), and `One Trip Across' (incorporated into "To Have and To Have Not"). These are stories everyone should read. I particularly liked `One Trip Across' where Hem, in the first-person, writes a great fishing and crime story while working with his characteristic themes of grace under pressure, honor, and sudden death. Here's a snippet, with Harry Morgan drifting in Havana's harbor:

"Well, I killed the engine and climbed up forward to have a look around. All there was to see was the two smacks off to the westward headed in, and way back the dome of the Capitol standing up white out of the edge of the sea. There was some gulfweed on the stream and a few birds working but not many. I sat up there awhile on top of the house and watched..."

In the spirit of full disclosure, I acknowledge reading less than half of the 69 stories in this collection. This I attribute to the best-selling Hem who, in 1938, certainly wanted another book out there. And in cherry-picking previously published stories, he created a collection that, while reflective of his themes, jumps from this to that. Of course, the man made a good living, partly by publishing short stories in magazines, where he certainly endeavored to keep his readers guessing about what he would do next. Even so, I bet the stories read with greater cohesion in the original books. This approach, at minimum, might give greater oomph to the inter-chapter sketches that Hem borrowed from "In Our Time". In this collection, these seem random and fragmented.

Following this line of thought, it might also be fun to read "The Nick Adams Stories". While this is a posthumous and fabricated volume, it does enable the reader to follow an interesting character from a heartland upbringing, to war and trauma, and to his own experience of fatherhood. Otherwise, these stories are scattered.

Don't get me wrong; this is a worthwhile collection. But doesn't it compromise the guy's work?
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on May 27, 2012
I had never read Hemingway before, thinking his books are for sporting men - in another word, boring for this city girly girl. I had recently read Paris Wife, and picked up this collection of short stories to see about Hemingway's books for myself. I was completely taken aback by his storytelling and his writing style. Such clean, crisp flow of words and not a word overused or wasted. And yet such spare writing can impart such depth of feeling and emotional punch. After reading his story about trout fishing, I could not believe how such a story can be so thrilling, enthralling and exciting. I found myself holding my breath and startling others with sharp intakes of breath while reading these stories. There is something magical, supernatural about how the sentences are put together in such order, almost linear, so that such economical writing is also so full of perception. Such good stories.
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on November 30, 2012
Hemingway's collection of short stories touches on many themes, but of particular interest to me was that of the soldier recovering mentally from the experience of warfare. Examples such as Big Two-Hearted River and In Another Country capture, in the way only Hemingway can relate, some of the core issues that people face when they have been been injured and/or have seen terrible things. It took a rereading or two, especially after I had deployed several times, to better appreciate these themes and frame for myself how to carry on with that which service members must often carry back home.

"I had been wounded, it was true; but we all knew that being wounded, after all, was really an accident. I was never ashamed of the ribbons, though, and sometimes, after the cocktail hour, I would imagine myself having done all the things they had done to get their medals; but walking home at night through the empty streets with the cold wind and all the shops closed, trying to keep near the street lights, I knew that Ì would never have done such things, and I was very much afraid to die, and often lay in bed at night by myself, afraid to die and wondering how I would be when back to the front again."

Only Hemingway.
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on November 24, 2009
I have read most of the big Hemingway novels-- For Whom the Bell Tolls,The Sun Also Rises (my favorite), The Old Man and The Sea. I had limited exposure to the short stories, having only read "The Short Happy Life of Frances Macomber" and "The Snows of Kilimanjaro". Honestly, I didn't like those two very much-- they seemed to distill the elements of Hemingway's prose of which I am least fond. I decided to buy this book since I have been spending more time lately on the structure of the short story-- and Hemingway is a master of prose.

I am actually glad that I read the whole collection. It is a pretty big pill to swallow, and there were moments when I got a little bit tired of it. But to read all of his short stories gives a much more nuanced sense of his approach to topics like blood sports, war, and masculinity then you get from just reading the handful of famous stories. I liked him and his narrative voice much better for reading the whole thing. My favorites were some of the smaller pieces midway through the volume: "The Killers" and "A Day's Wait" were personal favorites, for example.

If you have an interest in Hemingway and would like to read further in his work than just the major novels, then I would certainly recommend the collection.
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We go through literary phases in our society with some author being "in" while others are "out," and sometimes these phases swing from one side to the other, much as our government does. At present we seem to be going through a period where Hemingway is "out," and to appear "in," we have all sorts of people biting at his heels, making light of his work, branding it politically incorrect, grousing about this and snipping at that; referring to him as a chauvinistic pig, questioning his musicality, challenging his originality...and the list goes on and on and on. I started reading this author's work years before his tragic death and continue to read his works. This is a personal choice, as I am rather fond of his short stories. I am not overly fond of his novels, ergo; I don't read them over and over again; this, again, is a personal choice. I have several friends who love the work of James Joyce. I cannot stand Joyce's writing and therefore I do not read his work. That does not make the taste of my friends bad, or wrong, nor does it make the work of Joyce anything but great, it just shows that we each have our own favorite flavor of goodies. Had I listened to this current fussing about Hemingway's writing, and not bothered to read him myself, I would have missed out on a reading experience that has given me much pleasure over the years. Now that being said...

This collection, The Finca Vigia Edition, is by far the best and most comprehensive gathering of the short stories by Ernest Hemingway I have come across. I have a copy of The First Forty-nine here, and it is certainly good, but this particular collection I am reviewing here is far, far better. The book is broken down into various sections. The first is The First Forty-nine, the second is Short Stories Published in Books or Magazines Subsequent to "The First Forty-nine,' and third we have Previously Unpublished Fiction. We sort of get to grow up with the author through his writing.

If you enjoy reading the works of Hemingway, then this is certainly the edition you should purchase. If you have never read Hemingway's short stories, then this is certainly the edition you should purchase. If you cannot stand the writing of Hemingway, then this is an edition you probably should not purchase. If you are one of those that have never read his work, but have jumped on the "lets kick Hem around a bit" band wagon; then shame on you! Read him before you kick him.

As I pointed out, I enjoy this author's short stories much more than I enjoy his novels. I also must admit to probably being for fascinated with Hemingway the man, than the writings of the man, in many ways, if indeed it is possible to separate the two. There are many, many biographies in print now, and more coming out as each year passes. Some of these works are good, others are bad and some are down write hilarious as it seems some folks will write anything to get published. This last statement has nothing to do with this volume being reviewed; I just felt like throwing it in.

Finally, I have seen at least three of these anti Hemingway phases in my life time and seen as many pro Hemingway spells as well. I suppose I will see more...if I live long enough.

Don Blankenship
The Ozarks
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