Tintin's Reviews > The Old Man and the Sea

The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
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Aug 28, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: ebook, classics

Finally I get to read Hemingway's work! It wasn't at all what I expected. I'm wavering between giving it 3 or 4 stars, because I wasn't bowled over by it but I know there's something beautiful shimmering underneath the narrative. I have a feeling it's the kind of work that benefits from multiple readings at different stages of life like my favorite 'The Little Prince.' 3 stars is because it isn't really my kind of story, but 5 stars because the story itself was conveyed very well. I read in the cliff notes that Hemingway uses the tip of the iceberg principle, that he showed only the tip and 7/8 of the story is what happens underneath. Well it was very effective, and I greatly admire that style of storytelling. Though fishing is something I have no interest in, I felt like I was truly in a boat, and Santiago's hopefulness, excitement, tiredness, pain, exhilaration, and dread throughout the journey. By the last 2/3 of the novella I was totally gripped. Santiago's relationship with the boy was also touching. The story is also very realistic; I never felt for a moment that I had to suspend disbelief or throw logic out the window. Even the ending, which I was unhappy about, was the inevitable and plausible way to end the story. For that and the poignancy (which I am a fan of), I give it 4 stars.

I noticed something as well -- Neil Gaiman's prose, for me, is reminiscent of Hemingway's sentence structure, with all the "ands." Only Neil Gaiman uses a lot more 'ands' and 'thens' and he has this certain cadence. And to think it bothered me for a long time that my sentences were full of 'ands'!
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Reading Progress

August 28, 2010 – Started Reading
August 28, 2010 – Shelved
August 28, 2010 – Shelved as: ebook
August 28, 2010 – Shelved as: classics
August 28, 2010 – Finished Reading

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