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PS3515.E37 Z492 1996 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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PS3515.E37 Z492 1996 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating
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Reviews 3

Publisher's Weekly Review

"[P]lease remember that when I am loud mouthed, bitter, son of a bitching and mistrustful," Hemingway explained to Perkins midway through their author-editor relationship, "I am really very reasonable and have great confidence and absolute trust in you." Many of Hemingway's letters to Perkins have been published before. Yet this selection of 130 of his letters‘often with omissions‘and 108 by Perkins offers insights into Hemingway that turn the collection into a sort of impulsive autobiography. He confesses, poses, harangues, argues, rages, gossips and confronts the hard choices of revision of his texts. Patiently, cautiously, Perkins cultivated his precious commodity as if he were a surrogate son. Hemingway was adamant about his craft. Writing had to be "solid and true and have all the dope and be interesting." Rhetorical flourishes were for "genteel" authors. Most writers, he tells Perkins, "if they don't fake, would be starved to death by Wednesday next." Perkins sees him through three expensive divorces and must finally offer this tentative defense of his profession: "Perhaps we are sometimes fools, but we are not skunks." Bruccoli has edited several works by another Perkins protégé, F. Scott Fitzgerald. The book includes reproductions of manuscripts, printed pages from novels and dust jackets. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


Library Journal Review

Hemingway was an indefatigable letter writer and, as editor Bruccoli (English, Univ. of South Carolina) states in his introduction, "wrote more words in letters than he wrote for publication, and letter writing became part of the mechanism of his literary career." This collection of correspondence between legendary Scribner's editor Perkins and his star author offers their personal insight into the writing and editing of Hemingway's works. Although Hemingway is now almost as famous for being a son of a bitch as he is for being a writer, he comes across here as a loyal and trusting friend‘at least to Perkins. But most important, these letters reveal him to be an artist first and foremost. The shooting, fishing, and drunken bravado that mark the Papa Hemingway persona are present but inconsequential here; what shines through is his total and unfaltering dedication to writing and how, for him, producing great literature was the only thing that counted. That insight makes this a valuable addition to Hemingway scholarship and an aficionado's delight.‘Michael Rogers, "Library Journal" (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


Choice Review

About 50 years ago Malcolm Cowley, among others, wrote criticism that corrected earlier, negative views of Hemingway. Hemingway's reputation is, of course, now secure, yet this collection should increase admiration for Hemingway and for Perkins. The letters reaffirm that Hemingway was as dedicated to his art as any writer in American literary history and that Perkins, even while he exalted Hemingway, revealed a sensitivity to both the fundamentals of the writer and to literature itself that went far beyond a concern for commas, dashes, words, and style to a literary theory and a criticism summed up in his declaration that "the utterly real thing in writing is the only thing that counts." Hemingway could not have said it better. In addition, just about everything relevant to Hemingway's life is included here: friends gained and lost, successes and failures, marriages made and ruined, writers admired and scorned, money, sorrows and joys of all kinds. Other features: correspondence arranged chronologically in terms of the books, preface by Charles Scribner III, editorial note and introduction, photos of the dust jackets of the books, a few pictures of Ernest and Maxwell. Not just a collection of letters but a vibrant dialogue between two men who, remarkably, understood and admired each other. All collections. F. L. Ryan Stonehill College