A Farewell to Arms is the first book I read by Ernest Hemingway. When I bought it from a second-hand bookseller in Istanbul, I was very young and didn’t appreciate great literature. So this book waited for many years on my various bookshelves. When I finally felt ready to read it, I was thrilled to meet him and of course, highly expecting.
This novel, which has significant similarities with the authors’ own life, was a bit hard for me to read. I felt desperate the whole time and additionally, I didn’t like the female characters. Why didn’t I like them? The main female character felt like she was missing something; almost like a crippled animal.
While the stupidity of war is already an impulsive subject matter; the unfulfilled love story drove me mad as well. I remember how desperate I felt when I read the last sentences. I didn’t want to believe it and find myself screaming at the author. However, it only fully reveals the whole reality of life. Contrary to the colourful and happy endings like the ones in Hollywood movies; it is so dark and desperate that you won’t be able to forget it.
About the book: A Farewell to Arms
In 1918 Ernest Hemingway went to war, to the ‘war to end all wars’. He volunteer for ambulance service in Italy, wounded and twice decorated. Out of his experiences came his early masterpiece, A Farewell to Arms.
In an unforgettable depiction of war, Hemingway recreates the fear, the comradeship, however the courage of his young American volunteers and the men and women he encounters along the way with conviction and brutal honesty. A love story of immense drama and uncompromising passion, A Farewell to Arms offers a unique and unflinching view of the world and people, by the winner of the 1954 Nobel Prize for Literature.
About the author: Ernest Hemingway
Ernest Miller Hemingway was an American journalist, novelist, short-story writer, and sportsman. His economical and understated style, which he termed the iceberg theory had a strong influence on 20th-century fiction, while his adventurous lifestyle and his public image brought him admiration from later generations.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: