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Men Without Women

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CLASSIC SHORT STORIES FROM THE MASTER OF AMERICAN FICTION First published in 1927, Men Without Women represents some of Hemingway's most important and compelling early writing. In these fourteen stories, Hemingway begins to examine the themes that would occupy his later works: the casualties of war, the often uneasy relationship between men and women, sport and sportsmanship. In "Bana CLASSIC SHORT STORIES FROM THE MASTER OF AMERICAN FICTION First published in 1927, Men Without Women represents some of Hemingway's most important and compelling early writing. In these fourteen stories, Hemingway begins to examine the themes that would occupy his later works: the casualties of war, the often uneasy relationship between men and women, sport and sportsmanship. In "Banal Story," Hemingway offers a lasting tribute to the famed matador Maera. "In Another Country" tells of an Italian major recovering from war wounds as he mourns the untimely death of his wife. "The Killers" is the hard-edged story about two Chicago gunmen and their potential victim. Nick Adams makes an appearance in "Ten Indians," in which he is presumably betrayed by his Indian girlfriend, Prudence. And "Hills Like White Elephants" is a young couple's subtle, heartwrenching discussion of abortion. Pared down, gritty, and subtly expressive, these stories show the young Hemingway emerging as America's finest short story writer.


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CLASSIC SHORT STORIES FROM THE MASTER OF AMERICAN FICTION First published in 1927, Men Without Women represents some of Hemingway's most important and compelling early writing. In these fourteen stories, Hemingway begins to examine the themes that would occupy his later works: the casualties of war, the often uneasy relationship between men and women, sport and sportsmanship. In "Bana CLASSIC SHORT STORIES FROM THE MASTER OF AMERICAN FICTION First published in 1927, Men Without Women represents some of Hemingway's most important and compelling early writing. In these fourteen stories, Hemingway begins to examine the themes that would occupy his later works: the casualties of war, the often uneasy relationship between men and women, sport and sportsmanship. In "Banal Story," Hemingway offers a lasting tribute to the famed matador Maera. "In Another Country" tells of an Italian major recovering from war wounds as he mourns the untimely death of his wife. "The Killers" is the hard-edged story about two Chicago gunmen and their potential victim. Nick Adams makes an appearance in "Ten Indians," in which he is presumably betrayed by his Indian girlfriend, Prudence. And "Hills Like White Elephants" is a young couple's subtle, heartwrenching discussion of abortion. Pared down, gritty, and subtly expressive, these stories show the young Hemingway emerging as America's finest short story writer.

30 review for Men Without Women

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jana

    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 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, you are prone to go deep with analysis. I forbid my students to use Google because I want them to be sick of thinking, which they always end up being. Literally they come to me and sigh in anguish: they don't understand it, they mostly hate Jig and her partner, they are fed up with the title and they can't tell me why atmosphere is so tense and under the boiling pressure, although all that these two do is wait for their train to get them to Madrid, drink and talk about nature, open spaces and heat. And then after 70 minutes of discussion I ask them certain trigger questions and I always see that never ending effect of eyes widening and constant eyelashes fluttering when they finally understand and then they always say: oh my God, really?! I love this story, sometimes I top-toe around it because you never know how people will react and I don’t want to push them overboard but I like it when I see groups of people in front of me, just contemplating and actually arguing about literature, forgetting that I’m in the classroom, eating candies or just writing down another theory in my Ernest Hemingway folder. There are three other stories that make people equally nervious but I always get best thinking effects after we finish our sessions. Raymond Carver's short story 'So much water so close to home', Tim Burton's 'The melancholy death of Oyster boy' and Hans Christian Andersen's 'The Little Mermaid'' which isn't at all a nice fairy tail. Social casualties that follow these analysis are always strickening.

  2. 4 out of 5

    David 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 somew “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 narrow to dismiss him altogether. However, “Would you please please please please please please please stop talking?”—is a line from one of the few women who speak in the book, appropriately telling off a blowhard (male) soon-to-be-ex. The best of these stories are among the finest in the English language: “Hills Like White Elephants,” “The Killers,” “In Another Country,” “Fifty Grand,” “Now I Lay Me,” though I want to make a pitch, too, for the story of the aging bullfighter in “The Undefeated,” which has amazing passages of description, as painful as it is now for most people to see the cruelty of the slow killing of the bull. But the twin portraits of the older bullfighter and bull are powerful, in spite of that. Both are undefeated, in the way of The Old Man in the Sea. “Fifty Grand” resembles a story, “A Matter of Colour,” Hem published in his high school literary magazine, Tabula, when he attended Oak Park High School (which I, name dropper, mention because it is near my house, and where they have a small shrine to the local hero outside the school). The story is one of a fight fix gone badly, and is really wonderful. What we see in these stories, some of them very short, just anecdotes, are men whose actions help Hem establish a kind of code of honor, gentlemen who exhibit the courage of “grace under pressure,” men who don’t talk too much, who aren’t too sentimental, or pretentious. Lean, rich stories. It was a pleasure to reread them.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Shovelmonkey1

    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 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 or a Facist depending on which border you happened to be facing). The stories he relays in this short collection touch on bullfighting (The Undefeated), war wounds (In another country), unwanted parental responsibility (Hills Like White Elephants), a hired hit (The Killers) and have a masculine sensibility which reads like a boys own adventure story but one in which all the boys have had to grow up. Now imagine how different Hemingway's writing would have been if he'd been born today in the age of X-Box, Nuts Magazine and alcopops... "Fifty Grand" could easily have been a thirty-odd page description of an interactive XBox live face-off via Fight Night live instead of a masterpiece short story of pounded flesh and adrenaline. Cheerfully this was not the case and Ernest existed, sometimes belligerently one suspects, in a time when the only required eau de toilette pour homme was testosterone. The stories in this book reflect this, with each character reduced to the raw brutal essence of what it means to be a man; in the bullring, at the end of a gun, in war at the wheel of a car or in the arms of a woman. Whether you think he was a misogynist dinosaur or man's man, Hemingway grabbed life by the balls and fought his way through wars, personal tragedy, four marriages and the development of a debilitating illness to die on his own terms and in his own way. If I was a man I think I'd like to be Hemingway.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Cecily

    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 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 sentences that it was almost like reading a child's book. In other hands, such sentences might be pleasingly spare, but here, they just annoyed me. I get that there was lots of symbolism and big themes in these little nuggets, but for me, there are more enjoyable ways to consider them. I was going to write a bit about each story, but I don't really feel inspired to do so. On the plus side, my second-hand copy smelled slightly of smoke, which seemed appropriate. Hemingway Update What a difference four years make. I'm a different reader now. I really enjoyed The Old Man and the Sea, reviewed HERE. It's still quite a masculine story, but not in the macho way that some of these are.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Fatin

    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 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 Like White Elephants. And who knows if I've actually understood it. And I had to wiki A Simple Enquiry. I can see that he's a fantastic writer, but I don't think he's a very good story-teller. Not yet, anyway. Also if his stories are anything to go by, he's too much of a chauvinist for me to like. His men are too masculine, too worldly, too sure of themselves. This is not what a man is. This is sexist. I am willing to look beyond it, of course, some of these stories are too good to just dismiss, but it still annoys me.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Brad

    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 witne 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 witnessed some terrible things. Both of these experiences would have altered death for the man and necessarily pushed the pragmatic over the spiritual for him. Yet the innkeeper and the sexton call the man "a beast" (his entire class, in fact) and laugh callously over his loss and the story that they say is "unbelievable" but gleefully recount as believable monetheless. It is this behaviour, the behaviour of these men sitting in judgment over another man, that bothers me. It is their words, recounting the story for the narrator and his friend, who are drinking their beers at the end of a long skiing season, that make me shudder. To pass judgment as they do is hurtful to a living man. It drives him from the inn. It makes him skulk off to the Löwen for another drink, lonely and bereft, but he is "the beast" who doesn't care for another human being enough to suit these soft men in their soft inn. Hardness isn't inherently bad, it often just is. At the very least we should try to understand it rather than pass judgment from the safety of our own prejudices. I'm always amazed by how much Hemingway can make me think with only four pages. And this really is only the tip of the iceberg.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Duane

    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 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 all, much better than I was expecting.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Ziba

    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 an 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 waves of the lake coming in on the shore, and he went back to sleep. In the morning there was a big wind blowing and the waves were running high up on the beach and he was awake a long time before he remembered that his heart was broken.” A collection of somewhat mediocre stories from an otherwise brilliant writer. Ten Indians was my favorite.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Byurakn

    I think Hemingway's short stories are underestimated. Most of them are as good as his novels and some of them are even better.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Brian

    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.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Zak

    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 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 order of preference, are: 1. The Undefeated 2. Hills Like White Elephants 3. The Killers 4. Fifty Grand 5. A Simple Enquiry 6. An Alpine Idyll. The prose is sparse, especially in 'The Killers' where the dialogue comes across as stilted and unnatural. By that I mean, you would not come across real people talking like that. It felt like a dark version of a Three Stooges episode. Despite that, it still had me hooked. I can't explain it. 'A Simple Enquiry' made me chuckle at the end. I googled up some reviews of this story to see if I had understood it correctly. No one else seemed to mention what I had surmised from the ending. Oh well, to each his own I guess... Final rating: 3.5*

  12. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    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 wh 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 happened next; you're left with a sense of wondering and a small sense of loss.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Martha

    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 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 dialogue, you follow it quickly, but BAM – you finish each one and you have many questions. I read each story two or three times and looked them up on the internet for explanations, and afterwards, wow, did I feel naive. I am naïve about Ernest Hemingway himself. I had heard bits and pieces about his drinking, drugs, homosexuality/bisexuality, obsessive sexuality, but I had only read For Whom the Bell Tolls, which didn’t show me much in those areas (or I missed stuff). Maybe the reference to the gun resting by his thigh over and over meant something – not sure. Each story within this small book had a message and each message was pretty darn dark and sad, but poignant. “Hills Like White Elephants”, is a dialogue between two people, that is the whole story. You read what he says, what she says, and know there is a hidden meaning behind the conversation, but don’t know exactly what it was. I read it, and re-read it and couldn’t figure it out. I ran to the internet and looked it up. I had the “Aha moment”! It all made sense after it was spelled out for me; very interesting short story dialogue. I liked this story the best. Then, there is “The Killers”, an interesting take on a mafia-type hit to come. The inevitable death to come to a man; and him knowing it but not doing anything about it, just waiting it out. Hemingway’s description of the characters within this story is powerful. I really enjoyed the “Undefeated”, a boxer who doesn’t want to retire. The boxer feels he still has it and wants to show that he still has it. Very gritty story and gives food for thought on how we all feel getting older and out of our prime, but we don’t want to face it. “An Alpine Idyll” was bizarre, and after reading the different analyses of this story on the internet, one I read was disgusting. It is interesting how the majority didn’t come up with this one fellow’s discovery. Sometimes I think because Hemingway was “out there”, there are those out there creating more drama in their reviews of his stories than what he intended. How do we know for sure what Hemingway was truly intending to portray? I am taking everyone’s comments with a grain of salt, and coming to my own conclusions. Every story in this small book has a message. Hemingway’s writing is very clever and intriguing. I recommend this book to adults only. I don’t know if kids would understand many of the hidden messages, and I am sure this is not on any reading list at school.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Mala

    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 wo 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 defeat. His bullfighter in the story 'The undefeated' wants a fight more for self-vindication than money. Life thus becomes more real to these men ,drunkerds & washed out though they may be,than it can ever be to the rest of us. I think nobody does lovable losers as well as Hemingway & Graham Greene. I don't like bullfighting & boxing & yet he made me care for his characters in these 14 short stories,most of them very famous ones,e.g.The killers,Hills Like White Elephants & In Another Country.I liked all of these along with The Undefeated,Fifty Grand,Ten Indians & Now I Lay Me. Hemingway's semi-autobiographical character Nick Adams appears in three stories. The title is a misnomer in the sense that there are female characters here but they are so peripheral to the stories (except in Hills like...) as to be non-existent! They exist as dead/absent wives,cheating girlfriend,memories or worse as commodities as in Hills Like White Elephants--the white elephant being a symbol of the pregnancy that the girlfriend is supposed to terminate. This commodification reaches its worst form in An Alpine Idyll. But then Hemingway was never known for a sensitive portrayal of female characters- most of them veer between cardboard representations of the virgin and the whore. And what to say of Hemingway's prose style! Read it when you are tired of pomo excesses- his sentences are easy on the eyes & on the brains too! He satirises the pseudo-intellectualism of his detractors in Banal Story. The world of these macho men is very forlorn- read it when you are feeling sad- you'll certainly come out feeling better when you contrast the relative security of your job,the concrete reality of a 'home' & the certainty of someone dear waiting for you when you get there. P.S. To make up for this insipid review,I'm sharing here a must-read interview,where,in his irrepressible style,Hemingway holds forth on a variety of subjects:  http://www.theparisreview.org/intervi... * Hemingway's culture of machismo: http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/sex/summ... http://www.google.ae/books?hl=en&...

  15. 4 out of 5

    sue

    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.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Gary Butler

    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.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Greg

    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 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 man should "find things he cannot lose," then we learn of the major's tragedy. We move on to a story in which a man and woman discuss whether the woman should have an abortion: women have firmly entered the book. A later story has a Major (the aforementioned one, perhaps?), asking his young male 'servant' a particularly personal question. I'll not be as subtle as Hemingway: the major enquires as to the sexuality of his servant. And in the final story, one man tries to convince another man to marry. In a way, the title of this selection of short stories is misleading, but it's certainly an attention-grabber. I always like to have a book of short stories handy when I, perhaps, have just a few minutes to spare, and I think short stories are great for bedtime reading: all is resolved within 10-15 pages or so. I'm a big fan of "The Sun Also Rises" as I've read it three times, getting more out of it with each read. I didn't care much for his posthumous "Garden of Eden" but I have a great admiration for Hemingway the Man. What a life he lived! And I'll read more Hemingway, certainly.

  18. 4 out of 5

    metaphor

    We could have everything and every day we make it more impossible.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Alison

    “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, wom “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, among others. I enjoyed these stories because I enjoy Hemingway. The characters in these stories are raw, they are sad. They grieve, they are injured, they are drunk, on the brink of divorce, they are miles from home, they are heart-broken. Hemingway writes with a stark realism that appeals to me. His experiences in the war in Italy are drawn from here--as well as his time spent in Chicago and Europe. You get a glimpse into the writer as you delve into these characters. If I could recommend only one story, it would be the startling "Hills Like White Elephants."

  20. 5 out of 5

    Behzad Sadeghi

    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 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 of the stories.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Ericka Clouther

    Good writing but I had to force my way through.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Toby

    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 adapta 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 Killers were incredibly inferior stories, somehow neither screenwriter captured the mood, style or content of the Hemingway story, something I find truly strange as he is apparently one of the most imitated writers of all time. The potential for many great movies is there in this collection, in the right hands it could be a goldmine.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Matt

    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 boringly sp 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 boringly spare on the surface, boiling over with drama just beneath. Shout outz to Little Steven and the Disciples... keep the faith!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Satyabrata Mishra

    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.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Falina

    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.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Asha Seth

    Now I lay Me, The Undefeated, Hills like White Elephants, are my favorites of the lot.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Sam Tornio

    Solid things; stories you can stand up in front of you.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Joey Gold

    To begin reading this book, one must loosen his "godlike" or "iconic" image of Hemingway for a better experience – that is if one has this type of common misassumption about the author. If you begin reading this book with a bias view of Hemingway you juxtaposed from countless sources claiming he was a superior genius, the most groundbreaking writer since Shakespeare, etc., you will feel deeply disappointed when you'll find out a rather simple yet often neglected fact; Hemingway was very, very, h To begin reading this book, one must loosen his "godlike" or "iconic" image of Hemingway for a better experience – that is if one has this type of common misassumption about the author. If you begin reading this book with a bias view of Hemingway you juxtaposed from countless sources claiming he was a superior genius, the most groundbreaking writer since Shakespeare, etc., you will feel deeply disappointed when you'll find out a rather simple yet often neglected fact; Hemingway was very, very, human. That is precisely the source of the hypnotic, irresistible charm in his precise sentences. When it comes to truly genius writers, those timeless figures who were to literature what – mundane examples ahead – Jordan was to basketball, De-Vinci to the arts, Einstein to science, Beethoven to music – Hemingway, thank god, is not in that list, which consists of Homer, Cervantes, Shakespeare, Lord Byron, Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, Joyce, and, arguably, Faulkner (try Absalom! Absalom! – you will support me on this). All the gritty joy in reading "The Sun Also Rises", "A Farewell to Arms", "The Old Man and the Sea" and "Men Without Women" is the lack of a supernatural glow. It's the brutal, somewhat unsophisticated lingual honesty which separates Hemingway from those literary masterminds. He is perhaps the most readable writer of the 20th century, he will continue opening endless doors for young writers, but, mind you, he is very much flesh and bone. That being said, I have to claim that I was surprised by these short stories. All but a handful stories somewhat abandoned methods of traditional story telling. These include the first – "The Undefeated" – about a down-and-out bullfighter, "The Killers" – a noir-like brief tale of ragged Chicago city life, and "Fifty Grand" – a piece of melancholy about an aging boxer who is caught up in betting. The remaining stories, especially a strange ramble called "Banal Story" and the often discussed "Hills Like White Elephants" – a painfully honest dialogue between a couple concerning abortion – are stripped down, ambiguous, and, perhaps intentionally, lack a real "beginning" or "ending". "Today is Friday", for example, is a satirical conversation between Roman soldiers written in play form. "Ten Indians" particularly intrigued me. It seems to be set in some dusty, Southern backwoods landscape, atypical for Hemingway, and features a teenager, Nick (is he Nick Adams, Hemingway's alter-ego that stars in "The Killers" and many others?) turned forlorn after learning via his father that his Native American crush Prudence was "happy" in the bushes with another. It is a very unusual and powerful story. Despite the short length and thought-provoking nature of this collection, I cannot recommend it as a first encounter with Hemingway. "The Sun Also Rises" is better for that, because a reader unfamiliar with the author's peculiar writing style will not feel overwhelmed – many passages are "unmanly" and concern Paris benders and honest character studies in between the fishing and bloodshed at bullrings. I often recommend the latter to anyone who things that Hemingway is just about virile action (read my review). "Men Without Women", as suggested by the title, might provoke ridicule in a reader questioning Hemingway's recognition. I mean, the very first story is about a Spanish Matador; plenty of ammunition for the many cynics who loathe "macho" action. In conclusion, I found most of this book great and positively unusual; but, again, try "The Sun Also Rises" if you are a first-timer. Joey Gold

  29. 5 out of 5

    Aziz

    Hemingway is a man's man

  30. 4 out of 5

    Perry Whitford

    Ho-hum, another go at understanding why Hemingway is so revered... I'm not the best judge for sure only having read three of his books before, although I have read The Old Man and the Sea no less than three times on its own to try and work out what all the fuss is about (I was none the wiser). Perhaps short stories were more his thing? Yes and no. The whole idea of the short story format is that less is more, an approach entirely in keeping with Hemingway's style, and most of Ho-hum, another go at understanding why Hemingway is so revered... I'm not the best judge for sure only having read three of his books before, although I have read The Old Man and the Sea no less than three times on its own to try and work out what all the fuss is about (I was none the wiser). Perhaps short stories were more his thing? Yes and no. The whole idea of the short story format is that less is more, an approach entirely in keeping with Hemingway's style, and most of the stories in this collection are extremely short yet contain more than they appear to. That's all to the good. The longest stories are about a boxer ('Fifty Grand') and a matador respectively ('The Undefeated'), subjects which Hemingway could have written about til the cows came home. Both are very good. The protagonists say most everything about themselves without saying a great deal. 'In Another Country' surprised and pleased me a lot. The injured major who advised his fellow patient not to get married was the kind of 'man without a woman' that I didn't expect to find in Hemingway. Maybe I should have done and this goes someway to explain why I have always been so unfair to him, after all he was married four times so he obviously couldn't live without them? The man having what we would term today a passive-aggressive argument with his girlfriend in 'Hills Like White Elephants' was more like what I expected, basic subtext "You can have the baby if you want but I'm out of here." Just as indirect and even more obvious was the American lady who refused her daughter's request to marry a foreigner then bought her a caged bird in 'A Canary for One.' Now that really is obvious. The last line was a nice touch though. The only other story I want to mention is 'Che Ti Dice La Patria?' The sheer banality of the corruption under a fascist state is an old literary chestnut now but I doubt this was the case when Hemingway provided this scornfully withering glimpse into Mussolini's Italy in 1927. I feel compelled to keep reading Hemingway until I grow to like him because my sister bought me a pack of his collected works, a surprisingly slim bundle when you place it on a shelf. I guess that's the way it ends up when you cut all the description out of your writing. Most of the volumes are no thicker than your average coaster. Only Death in the Afternoon could help you balance a wonky table, not the worst use for it. I liked this collection, but with the passing of time and without the impact of his living celebrity was he really doing anything more interesting than Brett Harte, O. Henry, or Stephen Crane, all of whom came before him? Not to mention the hard-boiled school who came on his heels and wipe the mat with him. I still think not. There's still time to change my mind however.

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