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To Have and Have Not

3.54  ·  Rating details ·  28,791 ratings  ·  1,867 reviews
I don't know who made the laws, but I know there ain't no law that you got to go hungry.

Harry Morgan was hard, the classic Hemingway hero. He had to be hard, rum-running and man-running from Cuba to the Forida Keys in the Depression. He ran risks, too, from stray coastguard bullets and sudden doublecrosses. But it was the only way he could keep his boat, keep his independe
Paperback, 184 pages
Published 1994 by Arrow Books (first published 1937)
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Average rating 3.54  · 
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Will Byrnes
Dec 22, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This is not at all the Nazi romp of Bogie and Bacall fame. There might be some external similarities, but they seem fleeting. If you put your lips together to whistle here, the likelihood would be that it would be to warn someone that the police were coming. Life can be tough in The Conch Republic.

Harry Morgan is a hard man in a hard time. He owns and operates his own fishing boat, out of Key West, catering to those who Have and want an ocean-going adventure. When Harry is stiffed out of almost
Ahmad Sharabiani
(Book 615 from 1001 books) - To Have And Have Not, Ernest Hemingway

To Have and Have Not is a novel by Ernest Hemingway (1937) about Harry Morgan, a fishing boat captain out of Key West, Florida.

The novel depicts Harry as an essentially good man, who is forced by dire economic forces beyond his control into the black-market activity of running contraband between Cuba and Florida.

A wealthy fishing charter customer (one of the "Have's") tricks Harry by slipping away without paying after a three-w
Steven Godin

Guns and testosterone on the ocean waves.

To Have and Have not is without question the most macho of the Hemingway novels I've read so far. It's mean, it's brute, it's rum-soaked, and it's also quite miserable. Especially for the women. I wouldn't be surprised if he wrote this under a dark cloud of Alcoholism. Thankfully, his no nonsense simple prose that doesn't try to do anything fancy is here, but, when I think of novels like The Sun Also Rises and A Farewell to Arms, this just wasn't as pleas
J.L.   Sutton
Nov 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well before the midway point, Ernest Hemingway’s To Have and Have Not turns into a different sort of book. At least, that’s the way it felt to me. It begins as the very straightforward story of an out of luck ship captain who turns to crime in order to support his family. Nothing is that simple in Hemingway. While connecting to the current political and economic climate (which included an incipient revolution in Cuba), Hemingway transforms this personal tragedy into something infinitely more com ...more
Jan 05, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

It starts very strongly -- good character development, definite Hemingway commentary tone -- lots of Hemingway Southern Hemisphere fun in Cuba.

But midway -- he just sort of wanders off and starts pointing his Hemingway at anything that moves. He introduces secondary and tertiary characters with incredible detail, but with no discernible purpose.

It's not one of his better books, and ends leaving you wondering how much better it would have been if the writing from about the second third on was
If you've never read Hemingway, this isn't the book for you. If you don't like experimentation, this isn't the book for you. If you're turned off by violence, this isn't the book for you. If you're an opponent of socialism, this isn't the book for you. If you want happy endings, this isn't the book for you.

If, however, you have dabbled in Hemingway and you want a challenge, this is the book for you. If you dig experimental literature, then this is the book for you. If you can stomach violence or
"In the old days he would not have worried, but the fighting part of him was tired now, along with the other part, and he was alone in all of this now and he lay on the big, wide, old bed and could neither read nor sleep."

It seems like there is always enough to worry about in the world, no matter what times you live though, and once you hit the age when you lose the "fighting part" of your inner rebel spirit and it fades into a tired "nah - I don't like that!" instead of "I AM GOING TO RAISE HE
Fiona MacDonald
I feel slightly less guilty knowing that Hemingway himself thought this was the worst book he had ever written, but even so, I must be missing something major because I found the prose dull, stilted, unemotional and simply boring. I couldn't connect with any of the characters and that was a big problem. A couple of pages were of interest, but overall I was desperate to finish and celebrating when I did. ...more
Apr 30, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: contemporary
Hemingway's tale of the later life and times of Harry Morgan, a fisherman, turned rum and people runner, living in Florida and running his boat to and from Cuba, for under the counter payments. Ernest Hemingway renders the numerous tragic scenes with an economy of words, but a lot of power, but overall I don't really get into this. 4 out of 12
Algernon (Darth Anyan)

"a man ... ain't got no ... hasn't got any ... can't really ... isn't any way out. No matter how ... a man alone ... ain't got no bloody chance."
Harry Morgan

A novel of the Depression Era, To Have and Have Not follows the struggle of Harry Morgan to make ends meet, to live a decent life. He is a boat owner sailing the waters between Cuba and Key West, renting out to rich tourists lookinh for the thrill of big fish chasing. The novel opens with a spectacular gunfight in front of a bar in Hava
Dec 26, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Florida Keys. 1937. Harry Morgan, husband to a former prostitute, disappointed father, erstwhile deep sea fishing guide. Broke. Desperate. Surrounded by wasted, depressed, angry, hopeless characters. Welcome to Hemingway.

How can a protagonist who refers to blacks as "niggers", who writes his own moral code with little regard for law or ethics, who regrets his daughters, and who has a dismal outlook on life even on his best days get under your skin? How can a writer, whose phrases are bleak, who
Ted Hovey
Jan 07, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hemingway is still my favorite writer. I've enjoyed all of his books, and I've learned from his style - minimal use of adverbs - maximum use of one-syllable words - clarity of expression - all of that and more. So why did I rate this book down, as 4 stars instead of 5? I had a hard time cheering for Harry, a criminal and a killer. I understand that Hemingway wrote in the "modernist" mode. That is to say, there are no happy endings in Hemingway's books. That is true in this book, for sure. Still, ...more
This book is widely considered one of Hemingways worst, and there's even a tale floating around that he told director Howard Hawks that he thought it was a pile of shit. It's not, though. It's neither his worst nor a pile of shit. Nor is it his best. But there is much to admire in To Have and Have Not, and those things are amplified by Will Patton's award worthy vocal performance in the audio version.

Patton's quiet, simmering rhythm, and his hushed tones -- even in the most violent moments -- b
Mar 09, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I'm all over the map on how to rate this one. It's better than 3 stars, but probably not worth 4 (but I'll round up). I was surprised to find that this was Hemingway's first "novel" in eight years. Is it a novel? On one hand, you could probably view this as a collection of short stories and a novella, with the connective thread being that Middled Aged Man of the Sea: Harry Morgan. But there are connective threads here (the Depression being the main one) where the reader can discern a beginning t ...more
Apr 24, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I want to start out by saying that I love Ernest Hemingway. I think The Old Man and the Sea is one of the greatest books ever written, and I have not even read many of his best novels yet, like The Sun Also Rises and For Whom the Bell Tolls, so it's possible his work gets even better than what I've already experienced. That being said, I highly doubt any of his remaining fiction can get any worse than To Have and Have Not, which is a complete dumpster fire.

The novel tells the story of Harry Morg
Daniel Villines
Re-reading a book is its own unique experience. The plot and characters are already known, and the mind has the luxury to pay attention to details and ideas that tended to be overlooked on the initial journey. Re-reading is filled with information that is free to float into the reader’s view.

This is my second time reading To Have and Have Not and I would say that this time through was the more enjoyable of the two. My initial reading created the impression of a poorly assembled story that depic
I don't know, Marie Morgan was thinking, sitting at the dining-room table. I can take it just a day at a time and a night at a time, and maybe it gets different. It’s the goddamned nights. [...] I’ve got to get started on something. Maybe you get over being dead inside. I guess it don’t make any difference. I got to start to do something anyway. It’s been a week today. I’m afraid if I think about him on purpose I’ll get so I can’t remember how he looks. That was when I got that awful panic when ...more
How do you get through nights if you can’t sleep?
I guess you find out like you find out how it feels to lose your husband. I guess you find out all right. I guess you find out everything in this goddamned life. I guess you do all right. I guess I’m probably finding out right now. You just go dead inside and everything is easy. You just get dead like most people are most of the time. I guess that’s how it is all right. I guess that’s just about what happens to you. Well, I’ve got a good start. I
Earl Gray
Sep 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This was my third time reading it. The first was in 1999, borrowed from the local library when I read/re-read a lot of his books for his 100th birthday. The second was when I bought a copy with a Border's gift certificate that my wife had given me in 2007. This time was when I brought it with me to read during a trip to Key West for my birthday because he wrote it there and it takes place there.

The highlight of reading it this time was reading it in our Key West hotel room on the Sunday that Is
Mar 04, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Considered Hemmingway’s worst- To Have and Have Not is almost shocking to read with modern eyes. Either he was a racist pig- likely; or he was documenting the sad state of racial affairs in the 1930’s when this was written- unlikely- but true, however inadvertedly. Even if I give him the benefit of the doubt, he probably was showing his ass as well.

The first section of this decidedly short novel is told from Harry Morgan’s POV. I found the first section to be the most engaging, although this is
Michael Finocchiaro
Clearly not Hem’s greatest work sandwiched as it was between two of his great masterpieces about Spain, A Farewell to Arms and For Whom The Bell Tolls. I had read the first third of the book as part of his Complete Stories, but despite the action being well-described and the dialogues being as realistic as usual form Hemingway, the book as a whole comes off disjointed. This was a period of life for Hemingway during which his married life with Pauline was falling apart and his love affair with Ma ...more
This book is rather difficult to review.

Granted, it was written in 1937 and speech patterns and certain words were acceptable at that time. But the way this story reads offended me right from the start. I had a hard time with it and I was going to just put it away and not finish. But, the completist that I am, made me finish it.

So a word of a caution, the language of this book is rather off putting.
Emily Luba
Oh I really wanted to love this book! I'm very aware that Hemingway is a literary genius and writes fabulous novels, but this book had me scratching my head. Basically I could summarize it in one sentence "A man drives his boat between Florida and Cuba and runs into violent and illegal happenings." And that. Is. It. I was really looking forward to reading Hemingway, as I never have before, and he is my Dad's favourite author but I just didn't get it the point of this novel. I'm not sure if there ...more
James Tingle

Maybe not his best (that I've read- not got through them all yet) but still pretty good I thought when I gave it a go a while back. Harry Morgan, the main character, is memorable and is one of those gruff, snarling, no nonsense, messed up characters you used to see in the old movies. Not someone you'd want round for dinner maybe- he'd probably punch a guest and then turn over the table- but great to read about from the safety of a comfy armchair. It all starts quite slowly and then really heats
Apr 23, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
The last Hemingway book I read was The Garden of Eden. To Have and Have Not has made me appreciate that last book a bit more. Comparing the books is unfair. Both are extremely different. Eden was unique. This book felt predictable, chaotic, and unrelateable. It almost felt as though it were two rough drafts thrown together. I did not like the turn of the structure near the end. I did not like the dialogue or the characters. I had high hopes after the first chapter. Even though I did not like Har ...more
Published in 1937, this book contains three stand alone, but interconnected stories, all revolving around the same character - Harry Morgan. The first two stories are very short, and were originally published in magazines, the third is novella length.

The stories are very nautical - those with an interest in boats will take more from the detailed boat descriptions than others. The writing style varies from story to story, as does the narration which doesn't remain consistent throughout - sometime
Czarny Pies
Dec 08, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one. Watch the movie with Bogart and Bacall instead.
Recommended to Czarny by: I have no one to blame but myself.
Perhaps intending to shock his intended readership composed of north-eastern liberals, Ernest Hemingway uses according to counter of my Kobo the word "Nigger" in 135 times in "To Have and Have Not" . The world "Chink" appears 27 times. Hemingway is not always putting these two words of his disreputable characters, they are in most cases employed by his narrator.
Most critics have found so many other things to object to in "To Have and Have Not" that they have felt safe in ignoring the repeated u
Feb 03, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Realy high literally style.
With alot of decent descriptions.
But the reader would be missed to infer whats the main lesson because the author had tried not to judge and say his own ideas in this book.The main thing that I have learned from this book was that love can cause everything.Sometimes people who loves sb does anything to make (in this book the t main character`s wife)satisfied.That caused his death.And how his wife could survive living without him...
کتابی پر از توصیفات ساده و پربار از اص
Carol Storm
I see why people say this is Hemingway's worst novel. It's not just the revolting racial epithets scattered everywhere like rat turds. It's the unintentionally hilarious dialogue between super-macho Harry and his big blonde, blowzy wife. ("I get excited just looking at you Harry. Do it to me again, that's all I want. That's all I care about!") On the other hand, there are some good gun fights and interesting background on Florida in the Depression. And the opening chapter, where the rich tourist ...more
As allways I enjoyed Hemingway’s writing. This is a very recognizable and typical Hemingway in some ways. At the same time, it is a book to read a few times: the story is not very coherent, there is a lot of shifting of POV, and the tone of the story is very different in the first part vs the second part.
Also, I think Hemingway is a real male chauvenist:-) But I can forgive him, if I see him as a child of his time. But I’m allways prepared when reading his books for the typical tough guy stuff.

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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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