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Men Without Women

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  10,097 ratings  ·  713 reviews
Men Without Women was a milestone in Hemingway's career. Fiesta had already established him as a novelist of exceptional power, but with these short stories, his second collection, he showed that it is possible, within the space of a few pages, to recreate a scene with absolute truth, bringing to life details observed only by the eye of a uniquely gifted artist.

Paperback, 132 pages
Published November 3rd 2004 by Arrow Books (first published October 1927)
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Average rating 3.64  · 
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 ·  10,097 ratings  ·  713 reviews

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Oct 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
There is this story from Hemingway called 'Hills like white elephants' and my English teacher gave it to me when I was 16. It is still one of the best pieces of literature I have ever read. I give it to my students as well, not to all of them, but to adults and those who can intellectually digest it. Every time I do it, I learn something new although I know this story by heart but Hemingway confuses readers with setting and symbolism and when you have something very confusing in front of you, yo ...more
Jun 26, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: real men and hard drinkers
Hemingway was born into a period when men were still fully expected to indulge in manly sports such as fishing and fighting and watching animals getting massacred in entertaining ways (all of which were presumably improved if there was a handy cerveza or scotch to hand). A time when men approached the acts of love and the acts of war with the same head on determination because life is brief and you never know when your number might be up (or your tackle might get blown off by either a Communist ...more
Dave Schaafsma
“So it’s a town full of bright boys.” –The Killers

Joseph Wood Krutch called the stories in Men Without Women "Sordid little catastrophes" involving "very vulgar people,” an assessment I find that observation ungenerous and vulgar in its own way, to miss the subtley and elegance of the prose, to miss the humanity and vulnerability underneath the bravado and bullfighting and boxing. I know Hemingway is out of fashion at the moment as supposed misogynist and drunk, but I think its somewhat too narr
I'm not especially keen on short stories: if they're good, I can't read too many in quick succession because it's disorienting, and if they're not good... I don't really want to read them.

It may be blasphemous to many, but this collection was in the latter camp, hence it took me a long time to read a very short book. I just couldn't engage with the characters, plots (I hate bullfighting and boxing, which set me against a couple of them) or writing style, the latter being mostly such short senten
Mar 25, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An Alpine Idyll -- The most striking image from any story in Hemingway's Men Without Women is that of the peasant man chopping and gathering wood in the lantern light, with the lantern dangling from the open mouth of his dead and frozen wife.

It is such a fitting image, considering the title of Hemingway's book, but I have never been bothered by the image, nor the action, as so many seem to be.

The peasant and his wife lived a hard life. We know that. And he was an ex-soldier who'd likely witnesse
Feb 28, 2013 rated it it was ok
I'm not really sure I see Hemingway's brilliance just yet. An idea or a quote will flit through when you least expect it and then the spark just goes out.
I love how he strips his stories of everything but the bare fundamentals, and sets it so that you never know what the story actually is. It quietly lurks behind the lines and pages, waiting for those who want to find it, and then bloody runs away when you think you've caught it. You just cannot win. It took me three reads to understand Hills Li
Published in 1927, this is Hemingway's 2nd group of short stories. This collection contains 14 stories and these were quite good. Of course there is a story about bullfighting and one about boxing, as you would expect. But they've got that Hemingway flair or style that is unique and very recognizable. Another story that was very poignant about a girl on the train, on the way to get an abortion, and her discussion with her lover, although they don't directly say that's what they are doing. All in ...more
Sep 22, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Extract from Ten Indians:

“My heart’s broken,” he thought. “If I feel this way my heart must be broken.”
After a while he heard his father blow out the lamp and go into his own room. He heard a wind come up in the trees outside and felt it come in cool through the screen. He lay for a long time with his face in the pillow, and after a while he forgot to think about Prudence and finally he went to sleep. When he awoke in the night he heard the wind in the hemlock trees outside the cottage and the
Mar 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I think Hemingway's short stories are underestimated. Most of them are as good as his novels and some of them are even better. ...more
Oct 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: b-n-50, bbc-100
I'm not good at short stories. It is a literary form that has eluded me, just as the story gets good; it ENDS!
Hemingway writes short stories that feel like snap shots; you see the young couple in the cafe, the boy trying to contain his broken heart, the injured soldiers. But the contact is brief, you look at them and draw conclusions about their lives based on body language, facial expression, their manner of speech and their interactions with the world. But a snapshot does not tell you what hap
Oct 24, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rating: 3.6. Too bad I can't give a half star rating. That's why I am rounding this down to 3 stars.
Some were not good, some were ok, some better than ok. I am a bit disappointed - yes I am not a Hemingway fan, but still, To Whom the Bell Tolls was so good.
My 4th Hemingway book.
Mar 03, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What rock have I been under? I had no idea there were short stories within Men Without Women, this small book of 137 pages. I had just finished For Whom the Bell Tolls and found this book. I thought, “Oh, Ernest Hemingway, I’ll like this novella. I will read it quickly to add to my 2013 Reading Challenge.” Uh, not! These short stories by Ernest Hemingway were the toughest short stories I have ever read; I haven’t worked my brain as much as I have with these. They seem so simple at first, easy di ...more

Recommended for: Tough guys with a gentle heart.

The blurb on the cover read " In these tales shorn of sensitivity and femininity,one meets real men–gunslingers, bullfighters,soldiers, jockeys,gangsters--," I stopped there,frowning--aren't doctors,academics,bankers (ok,not bankers) real men too?

Ah,but then you have to remember Hemingway's culture of machismo*: these are 'real men' cause they've looked death in the eye,they have gone to the edge & come back- mortally wounded yet never conceding de
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had two short story collections before me with the title 'Men Without Women', one by Ernest Hemingway, the other by Haruki Murakami. I went with Hemingway's because it was slimmer and had a nice cover photograph of some men sitting at a doorway drinking beer and smoking cigarettes (yeah, I'm shallow that way).

Anyway, as is typical for short story collections, some are good, some are so-so. The better ones require a bit of thinking, which is always a good thing. My favourites, in no particular
Dec 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: story
Such a brilliant piece from Hemingway! There is a sense of Duality in each of these stories and I think I like this Duality.

In some stories it feels like the day has been saved, whereas, in reality they are the doomed ones. The base would fall off at any moment. On the other hand, there are stories where things get pretty convoluted. But the day is saved in the end.

I also enjoyed the brilliant framing of the stories: how Hemingway showed the bigger picture on the screen and delivered the core es
Sep 17, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
An early collection of Hemingway stories that show the range he would employ in his longer works. The more famous "Hills Like White Elephants" and "The Killers" are included in this volume. "Now I Lay Me" was a new story for me and was my favorite of the bunch. ...more
I am determined to get through these stories if its the last thing I do, c'mon its Ernest Hemingway.

Everyone loves a Hemingway story right, so why not me.
Gary Butler
May 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literature
21st book read in 2018.

Number 176 out of 681 on my all time book list.

Really good short stories with a surprising amount of depth.
What an intriguing title! And what a fascinating cover/illustration. If you look closely, there appears to be one woman in the crowd, but her eyes are blocked from the action by a rope around the boxing ring. (We're approaching thesis territory about titles of books, but I digress.) And as the book progresses, one becomes further mystified as to why Hemmingway chose this title. The book opens with a good bullfight story in which no women appear. Next, a Major advises a patient to never marry: a ...more
Hemingway’s Men Without Women is a compilation of short stories with unique themes and protagonists. However I don’t have the slightest clue as to why the famous author chose this title, which I found completely misleading. I do not know what I was expecting but not this. The narration was so dry and prosaic that I literally dragged myself to the end of this 100-page little book. I guess I had such high hopes for it that I ended up heartbroken and disillusioned.
We could have everything and every day we make it more impossible.
Feb 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“That's all we do, isn't it -- look at things and try new drinks?”

Men Without Women is a collection of stories by Ernest Hemingway. It includes such classics as "Hills Like White Elephants", "Fifty Grand", "The Killers", and "In Another Country."

I listened to this collection on audible as read by Stacey Keach, and he was a wonderful reader. His voice, for one, sounds to me like Hemingway might sound. Also he did a great job with the dialects which included Italians, New Yorkers, women, a drunk,
Bhzd Sdgh
Oct 19, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-story
Stories in this collection range from pure genius (Hills like White Elephants) to good enough (Fifty Grand) to total crap (Che Ti Dice La Patria?).
The book was written near the beginning of Hemingway's career and was one of the books that made him popular. The famous reticent style consisting of short sentences with which Hemingway is known starts to take shape in this book, and the special topics in which Hemingway was always interested (was, bullfighting, boxing, hunting, etc.) appear in most
May 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: classics
Hemingway is at his best in small measures, like the stories in this book or a short novel like The Old Man and the Sea. Even so, there are ups and downs and not all stories in this collection deserve four stars. It should be noted that the title, while an amusing example of Hemingway machismo, is a little misleading. A few of the stories do feature women in main roles, such as the one which is probably the best in the collection: Hills Like White Elephants.
Unlike the book In our times, in which I've found interest in journey and meeting new peoples, Men without women is quite enjoyable with it's dynamic and excited plots. We have fights with bulls in The undefeated, boxing match in Fifty grand, collecting the debts in The Killers, broken loves in Ten Indians, facing the consequences of war in Now I lay me and so on. It's so versatile and almost certainly everyone can find something for himself. My personal favourite is the first story, The undefea ...more
Oct 02, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories, lit
My first taste of Hemingway and his much praised writing style. The stories from this collection, and especially The Killers, are very good examples of slice of life narratives. I love how backstory is implied for the characters and events and every story leaves you contemplating what will follow.

I did however feel let down by possibly the two weakest stories closing the collection which left a bad flavour in the mouth of an otherwise highly enjoyable experience.

Both movie adaptations of The Kil
Sep 25, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Style vs. Substance, that's the ongoing debate. In this collection I'd have to say that Style is the main event -- which isn't to say there aren't some good stories in there -- but in my opinion, the action takes a back seat to the rhythm of the writing itself.

Used to teach Hills Like White Elephants and Ten Indians, subsequently they're my favorite. Chosen for their thematic content and (admittedly) their brevity, these are a great way to introduce students to the idea of subtext: almost boring
Satyabrata Mishra
Apr 20, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Men without women is a collection of short stories. After a movable feast, this book felt like a letdown. It's brilliant in patches ( hills like white elephant is extremely well crafted). But then again all the stories leave you wishing for more. Still pick it up just for hills like white elephant. ...more
I am so indifferent to this book. I honestly don't understand why people love Hemingway or what meaning they find in stories like these. They just seemed so inconsequential to me. ...more
Feb 10, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Boring, uninspiring, and a struggle to make myself read it.
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50 books to read ...: Men without Women 1 15 Jul 02, 2020 12:13PM  
Armenian readers ...: Hills like withe elephants. քննարկում 11 34 Apr 09, 2015 03:12PM  
Armenian readers ...: Today is friday 5 13 Apr 09, 2015 02:52AM  
Armenian readers ...: An alpine idyll 8 7 Apr 08, 2015 04:56AM  
Armenian readers ...: Ten indians 3 8 Apr 07, 2015 02:20PM  
Armenian readers ...: A simple enquiry 8 18 Apr 05, 2015 06:26AM  
Armenian readers ...: Fifty grand 2 8 Apr 05, 2015 03:05AM  

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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

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