Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “El viejo y el mar” as Want to Read:
El viejo y el mar
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

El viejo y el mar

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  1,019,602 ratings  ·  33,037 reviews
This short novel, already a modern classic, is the superbly told, tragic story of a Cuban fisherman in the Gulf Stream and the giant Marlin he kills and loses — specifically referred to in the citation accompanying the author's Nobel Prize for literature in 1954. ...more
Hardcover, 233 pages
Published 2000 by Editorial Planeta S.A. (first published September 1st 1952)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about El viejo y el mar, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Marilyn There are so many great kids' books! What is wrong with a kid reading kids' books? Save this one for later when he can understand the depth of the boo…moreThere are so many great kids' books! What is wrong with a kid reading kids' books? Save this one for later when he can understand the depth of the book.

Shiloh by Naylor
Rabbit Hill by Lawson
Ralph S Mouse by Cleary
The Hobbit by Tolkien
Chronicles of Narnia
The Phantom Tollbooth by Juster
There are 2 Dr. Dolittle books by Lofting
anything by Roald Dahl
Dragon Rider by Funke
Peter Pan by Barrie
The Cricket in Times Square and others by George Selden
anything by Marguerite Henry
The Jungle Book and Just So Stories both by Kipling
Mary Poppins 4 books by Travers
Hoot by Hiaasen
Swiss Family Robinson by Wyss
Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Lad A Dog by Terhune
Rascal (it's about a raccoon) by North

There is a great series about a pig named Freddy who has all sorts of adventures. Walter Brooks wrote his series in the 1950's. IF you can find any of them they are wonderful. Freddy becomes a detective, he writes a newspaper, he goes to school and plays baseball. He travels to Florida and also to the North Pole.
Titia Lenzhölzer-Maas The first thought I had after finishing the book was: "It is not about whether you win or lose, it's about how you play the game." To me, that is what…moreThe first thought I had after finishing the book was: "It is not about whether you win or lose, it's about how you play the game." To me, that is what this book is all about.

Knowing who you are, trusting yourself, seeing things from different perspectives yet not in a doubtful way, and giving it all you have got. That's what I admire. That is what I found in this little book. (less)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.79  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,019,602 ratings  ·  33,037 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of El viejo y el mar
Jan 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic-novels
I read this as a young man and was disappointed. It didn't work for me. I thought it was about a crazy old man gone off the reservation, picking a fight with an innocent fish while ranting about the New York Yankees ("I would like to take the great DiMaggio fishing. They say his father was a fisherman...").

I picked it up again, after the passage of some years, and found it incredibly poignant.

It's a simple story. There's an old man, Santiago, who is a fisherman fallen on hard times. He is cared
Apr 22, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: anyone-fiction
Oh, my good lord in heaven. Cut your line, land your boat and go to McDonald's! Just as in the case of The Great Gatsby, I understand the book. Yes, I know it changed the way American writers write. I also understand that it celebrates the ridiculous American idea that you're only a REAL man if you've done something entirely purposeless, but really dangerous, in pursuit of making yourself look like the bull with the biggest sexual equipment. Get over it, already! Go home and clean out the refrig ...more
Worst book ever.

Just throw the fucking fish back in. Fuck.
"There isn't any symbolism. The sea is the sea. The old man is an old man. The boy is a boy and the fish is a fish. The sharks are all sharks no better and no worse. All the symbolism that people say is shit. What goes beyond is what you see beyond when you know."

-Ernest Hemingway
hemingway-1-1 v2

My very first time reading Papa and I absolutely LOVED IT. Sometimes the experience you have with a book can be effected by many things beyond the narrative itself, and I think that is certainly the case here. While I believe I would have loved this story regardless, there is no doubt that the stars aligned themselves perfectly to make this a singularly special read for me.

Let me explain...

Last year, I was in Napa with my wife and two of our best friends celebrating my (oh shit!!) 40th birt
Ahmad Sharabiani
(Book 521 From 1001 Books) - The Old Man and The Sea, Ernest Hemingway

The Old Man and the Sea is a short novel written by the American author Ernest Hemingway in 1951 in Bimini, Bahamas, and published in 1952.

It was the last major work of fiction by Hemingway that was published during his lifetime. One of his most famous works, it tells the story of Santiago, an aging Cuban fisherman who struggles with a giant marlin far out in the Gulf Stream off the coast of Cuba.

In 1953, The Old Man and the
Will Byrnes
It is intimidating to offer a truly critical look at such a classic, so we will ease into it with a few images.

The GOP has offered us a ready-made item to begin this list, and yes, I know that John Stewart already snagged this one and threw it back.

I turned up a visual art concept that fits in, for a restaurant based on EH themes:description

Although I did not sit for this photo, the resemblance is indeed strikingdescription

And, of course
The Old Man and the Cee Lo.

I suppose am certain there are plenty more images on
Lisa of Troy
Mar 03, 2022 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This One Had Me Hooked

Set in Cuba, The Old Man and The Sea is about an old fisherman named Santiago. He has not been lucky lately with his fishing, and he is all alone in the world save one little boy. Will Santiago’s luck turn?

This book had me hooked from the beginning (sorry I couldn’t resist). But seriously, this book gripped me from the beginning. It is definitely a tearjerker. The Old Man and The Sea is deeply moving and filled with symbolism. This is a perfect example of an author showing
"But man is not made for defeat" he said. "A man can be destroyed, but not defeated."
The Old Man and the Sea ~~ Ernest Hemingway


I first encountered Hemingway in college while taking a humanities class; the professor had us read Hemingway’s The Nick Adams Stories . I fell in love with Hemingway’s short stories. I wrote an impassioned paper on the character of Nick and received an “A” for my efforts. Throughout the years, I have returned to Hemingway’s short stories, and novellas, and I ha
Meghna Agrawal (On a Review-Writing Break!)
A story of a destroyed but undefeated thin, old, gaunt man, Santiago, with an unlucky boat.
A story of a decrepit man with deep neck wrinkles.
Everything was old about him, but for his cheerful and infallible eyes!
With no fisherman luck but a helping-hand in a young boy with ardour and empathy, Manolin!
The bond between the two is way too adorable!

Though the circumstances distance the two physically,
but could not deter the love between the two!
Both have sincere love and care for each other.
Dec 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
On July 2, 1961, Heaven and the world fell silent.

When a just man dies
Lamentation and praise
Sorrow and joy
Are one.

And some suicides, as Scobie’s in The Heart of the Matter, are - no matter what dour theologians May say - Trophies of Heaven.

Such, surely, was Hemingway’s.

That sunny, windy summer morning we all got the news, even my preteen friends and I were taciturn and sullen.

Ernest Hemingway had been a Hero in our world. Life and Time magazines said so, and they were the gospel truth for our p
The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

With a language of great force and simplicity, it tells the story of an old fisherman whom luck seems to have abandoned. And also of the dire challenge he faces. The story is quite simple. I know there were enough tension moments in this book. But still, I didn't enjoy the story much.
Every day is a new day. It is better to be lucky. But I would rather be exact. Then when luck comes you are ready.

Good story.
Riku Sayuj
The wolves will come...

I started this in high spirits as my updates show: "fifth re-read, how thrilling it is to plumb new depths in old wells of wisdom..."

But, as I read on towards the last few pages, I couldn't shake the feeling that this is Moby Dick set in an alternate universe.

In this alternate universe:

The Giant Leviathan is a noble, unseen fish - steady and without malice.
Captain Ahab is transformed into a gentle, wise old zen master. Santiago - a humble fisherman with no legendary crew t
My children and I were crossing a bridge in Rome. Our senses were acutely sharpened. We were aware of each minute spent in this capital of human storytelling, of the neverending drama of human culture and nature in interaction and in occasional clashes. Looking out over the river, my son and I spot the sorry remains of a boat, just the bare metal frame without any "flesh", and we instinctively say at the same time:

"Hemingway's old man!"

We look at each other, smile at our simultaneous associati
David Putnam
Dec 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book. One of my favorites. I really don't understand why this book doesn't have a higher overall rating. I like Hemingway and I think this is one of his better ones. I guess it's because it doesn't get in the way of itself like some of his other works. This one is straightforward, great descriptions in a man vs nature story.
Highly recommend.
David Putnam author of The Bruno Johnson series.
Andy Marr
Oh my GOD, just throw the fuckin' fish back in the water, already.

Jul 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A masterpiece.

Like a fable, this has become a part of our cultural consciousness. Santiago's simple heroism is a benchmark for all who persevere and endure.

Jul 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror
This is one of my favourite Hemingway books ever. The old fisherman has the catch of his lifetime and loses everything in a hard struggle to nature. Only bits and pieces of the great Marlin remain. What a book and what a powerful prose. A book to take with you on a deserted island. You seldom find so much symbolism condensed in one single and relatively short book. Very emotional and moving. One of my alltime favourites, a timeless classic! Recommended? I would say this is an absolute must read!
Dave Schaafsma
“He was an old man who fished alone in a skiff on the Gulf Stream and he had gone eighty-four days without a fish.”

A masterpiece.

I know that many many young people are still forced to read this book in school and don’t quite get what all the hoopla is about, but I think it is not written with young people primarily in mind. There is the boy that supports the old man, true, but as with other stories about old people facing hardship—King Lear comes to mind—I think other stories may connect bette
Vit Babenco
Apr 12, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I believe The Old Man and the Sea reflects Ernest Hemingway’s own life crisis…
Any fishing feats, even picturesquely portrayed, don’t sound like some heroic doings…
The sun was rising for the third time since he had put to sea when the fish started to circle. He could not see by the slant of the line that the fish was circling. It was too early for that. He just felt a faint slackening of the pressure of the line and he commenced to pull on it gently with his right hand. It tightened, as always, b
Jun 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The metaphor of this tale escaped me when I read it (I was undoubtedly too young), but today it is luminous; for ordinary people, work offers barely enough to live on, given the harshness and risks it represents. So an important goal, and sharks will regret it before they can even enjoy it.
Still, the writing (and the time translation) is a model of simplicity and sensitivity.
Jun 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ernest Hemingway is considered one of the masters of American 20th century fiction. Garnering from his life experiences, his novels reflect on his time as a newspaper reporter and correspondent in a Europe during both the inner war and war years. A member of the lost generation, Hemingway was the first of his group to have a major work published. In addition to all of the accolades bestowed upon him, Hemingway is considered along Steinbeck to be a master storyteller, especially of short stories. ...more
Jan 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My big fish must be somewhere.

Many years ago when I read The Old Man and the Sea I thought it was going nowhere, that it was too simple and ordinary to be of any consequence. On a second reading, however, my view changed and I ended up loving it. What I mistook for repetition was a literary device for emphasis and the boat, like the story, that I judged to be unmoving in the rolling seas was caught in a whirlpool churning the waters in its depth so that the boat and the old man at the sea were n
Reading_ Tamishly
The Old Man and The Sea is a short story by Ernest Hemingway which talks about an old lonely fisherman who was being shunned as he was considered bad luck when it comes to fishing and those who live around. Except for a young boy who takes care that he sleeps, eats and carry on with his normal daily routine, the old man lives a rather lonely life who takes pleasure in talking about baseball and his old fishing adventures.

The plot revolves around two days and nights when he sets out to get hold
May 16, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
A lot of people will hate me for this but I fucking haaaaaate The Old Man and the Sea. It was so boring and yeah I get it, it's an allegory. I don't fucking care. ...more

The whole conviction of my life now rests upon the belief that loneliness, far from being a rare and curious phenomenon, peculiar to myself and to a few other solitary men, is the central and inevitable fact of human existence.
-Tom Wolfe

Loneliness of human existence is omnipresent, perhaps that is what human existence is condemned to and that is what has haunted human beings most since the early days of civilization. Though loneliness is an unavoidable condition of our humanity, it resides
Mar 05, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library, classic
This was my very first Hemingway and I loved it! However, I am not sure if it broke me for future Hemingway novels. This one was so perfect in its simpleness. When I got to other Hemingway novels it was almost like there was too much in them - I wanted the basics of this book again. That is not to say that I have not enjoyed his other books, but if I had read the others first and wasn't tempted to compare them to this, I would have rated them higher.

So, if you want to read lots of Hemingway, may
Aug 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's man against nature, the elements.
It's all about the adventure, the battle ... that's what makes you feel so alive.
The old man, Santiago, was going to continue whether it killed him or not ... to die while feeling so alive ...

For those with the wonderful ability to enjoy reading ... this book is a privilege.

Ian "Marvin" Graye
The Old Man and the Allegory

This book might just be an allegory of Darwinist Capitalism and the survival of the most aggressive and hungry in the world of corporate enterprise and rivalry.

Hey, What's the Big Idea?

It describes what it feels like to have one big idea or to invent something for which the market is not ready.

You struggle and wrestle with your "big fish" for ages, until in your mind you have caught it and perfected the way to reel it in, nobody is watching when you start the journey
J.L.   Sutton
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“I may not be as stong as I think, but I know many tricks and I have resolution.”

The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway

The language of Ernest Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea evokes some bygone fable, but it is still direct and powerful. For those who want it, there's a simple story here of a down on his luck fisherman, Santiago. In order to change his fortunes, Santiago takes his boat out further than he's ever done before. What seems like good fortune on this fishing trip turns into a fight for survival. For those who want to l
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Metamorphosis
  • Animal Farm
  • The Little Prince
  • The Stranger
  • 1984
  • The Catcher in the Rye
  • Of Mice and Men
  • Crime and Punishment
  • The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
  • The Great Gatsby
  • The Picture of Dorian Gray
  • Lord of the Flies
  • Fahrenheit 451
  • The Grapes of Wrath
  • Brave New World
  • One Hundred Years of Solitude
  • Siddhartha
  • Hamlet
See similar books…
See top shelves…
Ernest Miller Hemingway was an American author and journalist. His economical and understated style had a strong influence on 20th-century fiction, while his life of adventure and his public image influenced later generations. Hemingway produced most of his work between the mid-1920s and the mid-1950s, and won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954. He published seven novels, six short story collec ...more

Articles featuring this book

Did you set an extremely ambitious Reading Challenge goal back in January? And has this, uh, unprecedented year gotten completely in the way of...
129 likes · 37 comments
“Every day is a new day. It is better to be lucky. But I would rather be exact. Then when luck comes you are ready.” 2666 likes
“But man is not made for defeat," he said. "A man can be destroyed but not defeated.” 2034 likes
More quotes…