Book Review: For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway – buddy read with Roberta Writes

For Whom the Bell Tolls
by
Ernest Hemingway

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Lately I’ve been in the mood to return to the classics. I’ve always loved Hemingway, but had never read For Whom the Bell Tolls, published in 1940. I’m sure you’ve all either read it or heard of it. Maybe you’ve seen the 1943 movie starring Gary Cooper, Ingrid Bergman and Akim Tamiroff.

You may not know that the title refers a line of prose by the poet John Donne which begins with, “No man is an island, entire of himself.” Donne wrote those lines in 1624 as part of a larger work entitled Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions. The last lines read, “Therefore, send not to know for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee.” The gist of Donne’s words is that we are all part of a greater whole. And Donne’s bell metaphor reminds us of the short time we have on earth.

These lines are especially meaningful in Hemingway’s story about Robert Jordan, a young American member of the International Brigade who has volunteered to fight against fascism in the Spanish Civil War. The story begins in 1937 and takes place over three days as Jordan contemplates his role in the war and his job to blow up an enemy bridge in the Guadarrama mountains. To blow up the bridge, he must join forces with guerrilla fighters who have camped behind enemy lines. There he meets the group’s leader, Pablo, whose notorious brutality has won them many battles. Although respected for his earlier leadership, Pablo has become disillusioned and jaded. He drinks all day and his unpredictable behavior may prove dangerous to them all.

When Jordan arrives at the camp, he also meets Maria, a beautiful young Spanish woman rescued from enemy capture where she was raped and tortured. Jordan is taken by Maria’s vulnerability and the two form an immediate, intense connection. Pablo’s wife, Pilar, senses the shortness of time and tells them they must take advantage of the time they have together. She knows that the future holds no guarantees.

Jordan also knows this. In his thoughts, he says, “So, if your life trades its seventy years for seventy hours I have that value now and I am lucky enough to know it.” He later tells Augustín, one of the fighters, “What we do not have is time. Tomorrow we must fight. To me that is nothing. But for the Maria and me it means that we must live all of our life in this time.”

Throughout the story, I felt a building sense of urgency, punctuated by waiting, for the bridge must be blown at a precise time, no earlier and no later. Pablo opposes the bridge-blowing, thinking it not enough. He argues that his own success in blowing up trains achieved better results. During the tense discussions, a new and dangerous dynamic emerges between Pablo and Pilar. Pilar, now a leader, would sacrifice her husband to guarantee the success of Robert’s mission.

On the last day, Jordan and the band carry out the plan to destroy the bridge. With success comes casualty, however, and soon Jordan, who is badly wounded, must contemplate his own mortality. “I hate to leave it, is all,” he thinks. “I hate to leave it very much and I hope I have done some good in it.”

I can’t tell you how engrossed I was in Hemingway’s portrayal of a time and place I knew little about. It’s a love story, of course, but it’s also one of war, politics, ideology and culture in which many of its characters think deeply about the value of human life, their purpose in the world and their connections to others.

I had a wonderful time reading this book with my buddy reader, Robbie Cheadle. She has posted her thoughts today, too, with an interesting perspective on leadership. Robbie is a terrific blogging friend and author and posts on two blogs, Roberta Writes and Robbie’s Inspriation. You can find out more about her here. And of course, be sure to check out her review of For Whom the Bell Tolls here!

Have you read For Whom the Bell Tolls? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

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Five literary Halloween costumes to get your party (or work) conversations going!

Are you dressing up for Halloween to take your kids out or answer the door? Heading to a party? Does your workplace encourage costumes? Although there’s no pressure at my library job to dress up on Halloween, people do dress up. I will be working that weekend and I’m thinking of something low-key to wear. I’ve dug up this post from a few years ago to inspire me.

There is plenty of time to plan, so if you’re looking for costume ideas for work or play, consider these literary ones:


Ernest Hemingway

Since bushy beards are the rage right now, guys with facial hair, grab a big turtleneck and you’re almost there! A large personality and fishing pole as a prop would finish the look!


Ayn Rand

Even if you haven’t read The Fountainhead or Atlas Shrugged, you can always look like this controversial literary figure. Comb your hair to the side. No makeup required. I couldn’t find a better free image on the internet, but you can watch this YouTube video to get into characgter.


Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote

Although Truman Capote wanted Marilyn Monroe, not Audrey Hepburn, to play Holly in the movie, Hepburn made that movie memorable. Pull out your classic black dress, put your hair up high under a fabulous hat and you’re on your way.


Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Atticus is one of my favorite literary characters and I don’t believe Harper Lee meant him to be anything but great, despite the traits she sketched out in Go Set a Watchman. Put on a searsucker three-piece suit, add a tie and some horn-rimmed glasses, and look serious, like Gregory Peck.


Daisy Buchanan from The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Find a gauzy tea dress, some pearls and an elaborate floppy hat and you’re almost there. This picture of Mia Farrow as Daisy will help you practice your doe-eyed expression.

What are you wearing for trick or treat? Would you have the courage to dress up in a costume for work? Leave a comment!

Note – for those who are virtuosos with the block editor, I tried to have the image captions appear on the display, but you can only see them if you click on the individual image. Anyone know a way around this? Also, does anyone know how to change the way the dividers look? Am I stuck with the double line because of my page design? Thanks!

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Books with writers as characters

Have you ever noticed how often the books we read include characters who (or is it that – someone please tell me the rule!) are writers? Some are novelists, poets, journalists or podcasters. Some are based on real-life writers. Many are struggling with their careers. They’ve either made it big and are losing their touch, or they’ve written one successful book, but haven’t written a second. Still others have made it big but struggle with the fame. These characters aren’t always the main part of the story, but many are.

I wonder if I’m just drawn to this kind of book? Here’s a list of what I’ve read:

The Good Neighbor by A.J. Banner – children’s author

Less by Andrew Sean Greer – struggling novelist

Miss Emily by Nuala O’Connor – Emily Dickinson

A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway – Ernest Hemingway (nonfiction)

My Name Is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout – novelist

A Murder of Magpies by Judith Flanders – novelists/publishing house

The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney – one sibling is a struggling novelist

Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty – romance novelist who may be losing her touch

The Night Swim by Megan Goldin – journalist/podcaster

The Paris Wife by Paula McLain – Ernest Hemingway as he writes The Sun Also Rises

The Perfect Couple by Elin Hilderbrand – popular mystery writer, past her peak

Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn – investigative journalist

Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney – struggling novelist

The Swans of Fifth Avenue by Melanie Benjamin – Truman Capote

The Tenant by Katrine Engberg – mystery writer

Today Will Be Different by Maria Semple – struggling graphic memoirist

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware – travel journalist

Youngblood Hawke by Herman Wouk – new novelist who makes it big

I’m about to start another one that will make this list: The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz. It’s a hot book this summer and my hold just came in from the library.

Do you like reading books about writers? Can you add any to this list? I may have to read them next!

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Five literary Halloween costumes to get your party conversations going!

Are you dressing up for Halloween? Does your workplace encourage costumes? Halloween is just a few days away and if you’re still looking for costume ideas for work or play, consider these literary ones:


Image: Wikipedia

Ernest Hemingway

Since bushy beards are the rage right now, guys with facial hair, grab a big turtleneck and you’re almost there! A large personality and fishing pole as a prop would finish the look!


Image: nymag.com

Ayn Rand

Even if you haven’t read The Fountainhead or Atlas Shrugged, you can always look like this controversial literary figure. Grab a Shriner’s hat, cover it in black, find a long cigarette holder and comb your hair to the side. No makeup required.


Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote

Although Truman Capote wanted Marilyn Monroe, not Audrey Hepburn, to play Holly in the movie, Hepburn made that movie memorable. Pull out your classic black dress, put your hair up high, add some bling and dark glasses and you’re on your way.


Image: Wikipedia

Atticus Finch from To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Atticus is one of my favorite literary characters and I don’t believe Harper Lee meant him to be anything but great, despite the traits she sketched out in Go Set a Watchman. Put on a light-colored three-piece suit, add a tie and some horn-rimmed glasses, and look serious, like Gregory Peck.


Image: Pinterest

Daisy Buchanan from The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Find a gauzy tea dress, some pearls and an elaborate floppy hat and you’re almost there. This picture of Mia Farrow as Daisy will help you practice your doe-eyed expression.


What are you wearing for trick or treat?

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Ernest Hemingway – love him or hate him?

Hemingway

I’m getting ready to read A Moveable Feast, Ernest Hemingway’s memoir of Paris in the 1920s.  During this time, Hemingway wrote both The Sun Also Rises and A Farewell to Arms and became part of the expatriate community in Paris, which included Gertrude Stein, Ezra Pound, F. Scott Fitzgerald and John Dos Passos.  This group is commonly known as the “Lost Generation”, a description Hemingway made popular when he wrote The Sun Also Rises, and a phrase to whom he credits Gertrude Stein.

a-moveable-feast

Hemingway died in 1961 and A Moveable Feast was published in 1964.  My copy of the book includes a foreward by Hemingway’s son, Patrick and an introduction by Seán Hemingway, the author’s grandson.

Now you either love Hemingway or you hate him.  I happen to think he is one of the greatest writers of all time, but many readers become frustrated with his style.  I have always liked his simple dialogues, word choices and descriptions because I think they make the characters and events all the more moving.  I recently read a review of The Old Man and the Sea  in which the reviewer commented that she thought she would like it better now that she was older but she still hated it!

I’m still working on reading all his books and short fiction, but you can check out my opinions of these:

“A Clean, Well-Lighted Place”
A Farewell to Arms
“Hills Like White Elephants”
The Old Man and the Sea
“The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber”
The Sun Also Rises

What do you think of Papa Hemingway?


the paris wife
If you enjoy reading about Hemingway and the Lost Generation, you may like The Paris Wife by Paula McLain.

 


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A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway

A Farewell to Arms

A Farewell to Arms
by
Ernest Hemingway

Rating:

Each time I re-read a favorite classic, I finish with a new appreciation for the story and the author. It was no different this week when I picked up A Farewell to Arms. It’s such a well-known book, it’s tempting to think, “Oh, I already know that story. Why re-read it?” Why? Because each time you are guaranteed to get something different out of it. It had been at least twenty years since I had read A Farewell to Arms and I can’t remember if I’d read it only once or twice before. I have always liked Hemingway’s writing style and find his stories easy to read, but full of deeper ideas and feelings. And who doesn’t like a wartime love story?

This is a love story about Frederic Henry, an American ambulance driver serving in the Italian army during World War I, who falls in love with a young English nurse, Catherine Barkley. Their relationship is just getting underway when Henry is badly wounded and sent to a Red Cross hospital in Milan. Catherine soon follows and the two begin a romance that is wholly defined by the circumstances that surround them.

This is a commentary on war as much as it is a romance, however and Hemingway used his own experiences as an ambulance driver during the war to tell it. He was badly wounded, just as Frederic Henry was, and recuperated for six months in Milan, where he fell in love with an American nurse named Agnes von Kurowski. They had planned to marry, but the relationship ended when Hemingway was sent home and she became engaged to an Italian officer.

Here’s a picture of (a very handsome) Hemingway while recuperating in Milan:

Photo: Britannica.com
Photo: Britannica.com

And here’s the (very pretty) nurse Hemingway fell in love with:

Agnes von Korowsky Photo: Wikipedia.org
Agnes von Korowsky Photo: Wikipedia.org

In his book, he talks about the Italian countryside in typical Hemingway style, describing the color of the sky, the sparkling water and the mountains above. And then he adds the Italian troops trying to fight against the Austrians, in impossible mountain terrain. Many of his characters question the purpose of the war. One of the drivers puts it plainly, “If everybody would not attack the war would be over.”

Henry sees the war clearest when he returns to duty:

Abstract words such as glory, honor, courage, or hallow were obscene beside the concrete names of villages, the numbers of roads, the names of rivers, the numbers of regiments and the dates.

It’s this new understanding of the war that drives Henry’s decisions for the rest of the story, and when it ends in a hospital in Switzerland, Hemingway leaves the reader to think about how things might have been different, without the backdrop of war.

I enjoyed all of A Farewell to Arms, but the most exciting scene occurs late in the book and involves a rough trip in a rowboat on Lake Maggiore, which borders both Italy and Switzerland. This picture helped me imagine what would seem an impossible voyage.

Lake Maggiore Photo: Wikipedia
Lake Maggiore Photo: Wikipedia


If you’re a movie lover, you may be interested to know that there are two film versions of A Farewell to Arms:

  • In 1932, starring Helen Hayes, Gary Cooper and Adolphe Menjou. Directed by Frank Borzage. Screenplay by Benjamin Glazer and Oliver H.P. Garrett. It won two Academy Awards, one for Best Cinematography and Best Sound. The film was also nominated for Best Picture and Best Art Direction. Click here to visit IMDb for a full description of this film.
  • In 1957, starring Rock Hudson, Jennifer Jones and Vittorio De Sica. Directed by Charles Vidor and John Huston. Screenplay by Ben Hecht. Vittorio was nominated for Best Actor in a Supporting Role. Visit IMDb for more information on this later film.

If you’re a Hemingway fan, you may enjoy the following:

“A Clean, Well-Lighted Place”
“Hills Like White Elephants”
A Moveable Feast
The Old Man and the Sea

The Sun Also Rises
“The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber”


A Farewell to Arms, like other Hemingway stories and novels, is deceptively simple, with complex ideas, definitely worthy of a re-read or two! I may soon be returning to other Hemingway favorites. Who are your favorite authors? Do you have a favorite re-read? Has your experience been different each time?

Thank you to the following sources: Wikipedia.org and Biography.com.

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Five-Star Short Fiction

I think short fiction is one of the greatest types of literature. The compressed stories, intense situations, surprising ironic twists and abrupt finishes are some of the things I love about short stories. They always leave me thinking! Here’s a list of my favorites. What are yours?


a rose for emily pic

 

“A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner

 

 


Best American Short Stories 1993

 

“An Angel on the Porch” by Thomas Wolfe

 


Babylon Revisited

 

“Babylon Revisited” by F. Scott Fitzgerald

 

 


Best American Short Stories 1994

 

“Cold Snap” by Thom Jones


Scribner Anthology big

 

“Death by Landscape” by Margaret Atwood


Scribner Anthology big

 

“Gryphon” by Charles Baxter


in the gloaming

 

“In the Gloaming” by Alice Elliott Dark


Best American Short Stories 1993

 

“Red Moccasins” by Susan Power


Scribner Anthology big

 

“Same Place, Same Things” by Tim Gautreaux


the chrysanthemums pic

 

“The Chrysanthemums” by John Steinbeck


The Horse Dealer's Daughter new

 

“The Horse Dealer’s Daughter” by D. H. Lawrence


The Most Dangerous Game

 

“The Most Dangerous Game” by Richard Connell


The Necklace pic


“The Necklace”
by Guy de Maupassant


The Oblong Box

 

“The Oblong Box” by Edgar Allan Poe


The Secret Life of Walter Mitty new

 

“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” by James Thurber


The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber

 

“The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber”
by Ernest Hemingway


the joy luck club pic

 

“Two Kinds” from The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan

 

 


I also enjoyed these collected stories by two of the greatest short fiction writers:

Dear Life cover

 

Dear Life: Stories by Alice Munro

 

 


 

BIGWildernessTips

 

 

Wilderness Tips by Margaret Atwood

 

 


What’s your favorite genre?  Leave a comment and let’s get talking!

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Short story review from The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway – “A Clean, Well-Lighted Place”

Welcome to an occasional feature on Book Club Mom. Short review of short fiction. I found this collection at our library’s used book sale.

“A Clean, Well-Lighted Place”
by
Ernest Hemingway

Rating: 4 out of 5.

“A Clean, Well-Lighted Place” was first published in 1933 and is a simple story of an old man sitting on the terrace outside a café, drinking late into the night. He likes the café and visits it regularly and there’s a dignified sadness about him. Although he is deaf, the old man finds a distinct peace in the evening quiet as he sits “in the shadow of the leaves of the tree.”

Hemingway leaves the reader to imagine why the man spends every night drinking alone. “Last week he tried to kill himself,” the waiter informs another.

The waiters, one young and one old, watch the old man. The young waiter is impatient for the man to finish. “I wish he would go home. I never get to bed before three o’clock. What kind of hour is that to go to bed?” The older waiter understands the drinking man, however, and feels a connection to him and others who need a well-lit place to spend the lonely hours of night. “You have youth, confidence, and a job,” he tells the younger waiter. “You have everything.”

When old man leaves and the younger waiter goes home, the older waiter hesitates to close the café, reluctant “because there may be some one who needs the café.” He is alone and feels the nothingness of life, a preview of existentialist thought. Although the existentialism movement did not become popular until the middle 1900s, Hemingway has introduced this idea in his story, a tie-in to the aimless feelings of the Lost Generation.

I like this story because Hemingway uses simple dialogue to show the different viewpoints of the two waiters. And what Hemingway leaves out is just as important. He leaves the reader to guess why the old man is alone, what he has lost, why he tried to kill himself, how he became deaf. Likewise, Hemingway only hints at why the older waiter is lonely, leaving the reader to imagine.

“A Clean, Well-Lighted Place” is a quick read, but one that keeps you thinking.

Have you read this one?

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Short story review from: The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway – “Hills Like White Elephants”

Welcome to an occasional feature on Book Club Mom. Short reviews of short fiction. I found this collection of Hemingway stories at our library’s used book sale.

“Hills Like White Elephants”
by
Ernest Hemingway

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Almost everyone can name at least one of Ernest Hemingway’s great novels, but he was also a prolific writer of short stories. In a recent conversation, however, I could only name one of them, “The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber.” That conversation led me to The Short Stories of Ernest Hemingway. It’s a collection of Hemingway’s first forty-nine stories. In the Preface, which was written in 1938, Hemingway casually discusses his favorites, in the following crazy-long, but great run-on sentence:

There are many kinds of stories in this book. I hope that you will find some that you like. Reading them over, the ones I liked the best, outside of those that have achieved some notoriety so that school teachers include them in story collections that their pupils have to buy in story courses, and you are always faintly embarrassed to read them and wonder whether you really wrote them or did you maybe hear them somewhere are, The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber, In Another Country, Hills Like White Elephants, A Way You’ll Never Be, The Snows of Kilimanjaro, A Clean Well-Lighted Place, and a story called The Light of the World, which nobody else ever liked. There are some others too. Because if you did not like them you would not publish them.

Today I chose “Hills Like White Elephants,” first published in 1927. This bare story, very short on description, takes place at a train station in Spain, in the valley of the Ebro River. It is structured around a tense conversation between an unnamed man and a girl, named Jig, who sit and drink at an outside table while they wait for their train. The two are irritable and it’s clear they have a problem. After some bickering about their drinks, the man tells her, “It’s really an awfully simple operation, Jig. It’s really not an operation at all.” What follows is an exchange between the man and the girl, in which Hemingway has hidden important clues about the couple’s relationship. The man encourages Jig to go through with the operation, assumed to be an abortion. Jig seems to have a better sense of how their relationship will fare afterwards, and of what the world has to offer them.

I like stories like this, because I like figuring out the dynamics between characters through what they say. Hemingway begins with an immediate conversation clash, as the girl looks out at the line of hills and says:

“They look like white elephants.”

The man shuts her down by replying, “I’ve never seen one.”

Her reply? “No, you wouldn’t have.”

His counter? “I might have. Just because you say I wouldn’t have doesn’t prove anything.”

When Jig compares the hills to white elephants, Hemingway makes an obvious reference to something that’s unwanted, but hard to get rid of, perhaps an unwanted baby, or a couple trapped in a relationship. There is plenty of additional analysis of this story, including the symbolism of the dry valley and the fields of grain, on SparkNotes , CliffsNotes, and Shmoop. You can check those out for a more scholarly analysis!

I like this story because, to me, it represents what is classic Hemingway. It reminds me of the tension hidden in the conversations between characters in his novels, especially The Sun Also Rises.

Hemingway fan? Check out these posts:
“A Clean, Well-Lighted Place”
A Farewell to Arms
A Moveable Feast
The Old Man and the Sea
“The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber”
The Sun Also Rises

Ernest Hemingway – love him or hate him?

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What did you read in 2014?

readingavidly.com
readingavidly.com

What is it about end-of-year lists? I love making them and I love reading all the power rankings for movies, TV shows and, of course books! When the end of December rolls around, I think we have a built-in need to list, categorize, and choose our favorites before we move on to the next year.

So I made my list, sorted it and picked out the books I enjoyed the most. Here are my faves for each category.

2014 FAVES:

Best Classic: Youngblood Hawke – Herman Wouk
Best Contemporary Fiction: The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells – Andrew Sean Greer
Best Young Adult: The Caged Graves – Dianne K. Salerni
Best Suspense: The Silent Wife – A. S. A. Harrison
Best Romance: Premiere – Tracy Ewens
Best Short Story: “The Short and Happy Life of Francis Macomber” – Ernest Hemingway
Best Children’s Book: Tommy’s Mommy’s Fish – Nancy Dingman Watson
Best Nonfiction: In the Heart of the Sea – Nathaniel Philbrick

And here’s what I read in 2014:

FICTION:

The Classics

Jane Eyre – Charlotte Brontё
Breakfast at Tiffany’s
– Truman Capote
The Great Gatsby
– F. Scott Fitzgerald
Lord of the Flies
– William Golding
Youngblood Hawke
– Herman Wouk

Contemporary Fiction

Tell the Wolves I’m Home – Carol Rifka Brunt
Sea Creatures – Susanna Daniel
Stiltsville – Susanna Daniel
Billy Bathgate – E.L. Doctorow
The Round House – Louise Erdrich
The American Heiress – Daisy Goodwin
Death in a Red Canvas Chair – N. A. Granger
The Impossible Lives of Greta Wells – Andrew Sean Greer
Elizabeth Is Missing – Emma Healey
We Are Water – Wally Lamb
The Pieces We Keep – Kristina McMorris
What Alice Forgot – Liane Moriarty
Me Before You – JoJo Moyes
Mary Coin – Marissa Silver
All Fall Down– Jennifer Weiner
The Interestings – Meg Wolitzer
The Book Thief
– Markus Zusak

Young Adult

The Spirit in the Stick – Neil Duffy
If I Stay
– Gayle Forman
The Eighth Day
– Dianne K. Salerni
The Caged Graves – Dianne K. Salerni

Suspense

Coma – Robin Cook
The Silent Wife – A. S. A. Harrison
Child 44 – Tom Rob Smith
Before I Go to Sleep – S. J. Watson

Romance

The Amish Midwife – Mindy Starns Clark & Leslie Gould
Premiere
– Tracy Ewens
Catalina Kiss
– Tracy Ewens

SHORT STORIES

“This Is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona” – Sherman Alexie
Wilderness Tips
– Margaret Atwood
“Death by Landscape” – Margaret Atwood
“Gryphon” – Charles Baxter
Dear Life
– Alice Munro
“House of Flowers” – Truman Capote
“The Most Dangerous Game” – Richard Connell
“In the Gloaming” – Alice Elliott Dark
“Saint Marie” – Louise Erdrich
“The Fastest Runner on Sixty-first Street” – James T. Farrell
“A Rose for Emily” – William Faulkner
“Babylon Revisited” – F. Scott Fitzgerald
“The Mail Lady” – David Gates
“The Girl on the Plane” – Mary Gaitskill
“Nicodemus Bluff” – Barry Hannah
“The Short and Happy Life of Francis Macomber” – Ernest Hemingway
“Cold Snap” – Thom Jones
“Landscape and Dream” – Nancy Krusoe
“The Horse Dealer’s Daughter” – D. H. Lawrence
“The Necklace” – Guy de Maupassant
“Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” – Joyce Carole Oats
“What the Thunder Said” – Janet Peery
“Red Moccasins” – Susan Power
“The Chrysanthemums” – John Steinbeck
“Two Kinds” – Amy Tan
“First, Body” – Melanie Rae Thon
“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” – James Thurber
“An Angel on the Porch” – Thomas Wolfe

CHILDREN’S BOOKS

A Friend Is Someone Who Likes You – Joan Walsh Anglund
Home for a Bunny – Margaret Wise Brown
Calendar Bears – Kathleen and Michael Hague
Robert the Rose Horse – Joan Heilbroner
The Lion and the Little Red Bird – Elisa Kleven
Make Way for Ducklings – Robert McCloskey
The Horse Who Lived Upstairs – Phyllis McGinley
One Hundred Hungry Ants – Elinor J. Pinczes
Pete’s a Pizza
– William Steig
Tommy’s Mommy’s Fish – Nancy Dingman Watson

NONFICTION

Empty Mansions – Bill Dedman & Paul Clark Newell, Jr.
The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace – Jeff Hobbs
In the Heart of the Sea
– Nathaniel Philbrick

What’s on your list?

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