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Hemingway for kids?


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I have never "gotten" Hemingway. I started one of his books, read the first chapter and didn't understand it, came back the next day, forgot what it was about, read the first chapter again and still didn't understand it. I think I read the first chapter several times and couldn't figure out what the heck the plot was about. I think it was about an ambulance driver during the war, and that's all I got. I've never read Hemingway again. So, I'm sorry, I have no recommendations.

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I have not yet let my 11 yo read Hemingway. He could manage the language but not several of the themes. My oldest read The Sun Also Rises at 13and dismissed Hemingway as a bit too manly. Last year at 16, she fell in love with the descriptive language in A Moveable Feast, one of my favorites. "Mom, Mom, you've just got to hear this paragraph. I can't believe how he put it all together. It's like I'm there in the cafe. Amazing!"

 

I would recommend you read a book first and see what you think. Sometimes there seems to be a race to have our children read classics earlier and earlier. It took a good deal of convincing for my daughter to try Hemingway again at a time when she was much more capable of appreciating the work.

Edited by swimmermom3
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Old Man and the Sea. But, I live at the beach and I think my whole world is colored by that. :)

 

Well, actually, I liked a lot of Hemmingway. But that was my gut reaction.

 

I second this. Love this story. I'm a beach girl, too.

What I really love in this story is the relationship between the man and the boy. Very wonderful treatment of the older by the younger.

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I listened to Old Man & the Sea on tape a few yrs ago, &...it's an amazing story. There's something about the language, its rhythm, etc. that really conveys the sea in an almost beyond-language poetic kind of way.

 

It does, however, take patience. I don't think I would have made it through if I hadn't been listening while on the treadmill. Iow, not in a paper read-it-yourself way.

 

It reminds me of a relationship w/ an old person. At first, the person seems boring, strange, & very, very slow. But if you can reset your inner clock to match theirs, you find yourself like Alice, through a rabbit hole & into another world filled w/ wonderful secrets.

 

In the end? I did not really like the book, but what Hemmingway was able to do in it is worth respecting. Wow.

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I despise Hemingway. He is mind-numbingly boring to me. If you're going to read anything by him, Old Man and the Sea is probably a good choice because it is mercifully short.

 

I know he has some short stories also, but the only one I can remember is "Hills Like White Elephants." The story is supposed to be a couple deciding whether or not to have an abortion. I have no idea where the whole abortion topic comes into the story. I never saw a hint of it. The teacher swore up and down that it was about abortion. Any discussion of the story you find on the internet says it's about abortion.

 

I know there are lots of people who like Hemingway. I'm not one of them. I won't require my kids to read anything he wrote.

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