The Sun Also Rises

On another wet and windy day I finished reading Ernest Hemingway’s first novel from 1926, originally published in UK as “Fiesta”, a title soon finalised as above, taken from “One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever. The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose.” (Ecclesiastes), reflecting the author’s following the theme of the post-first World War generation, believed to have been lost.

We are abruptly introduced to the author spare, journalistic, style in the convincing dialogue of Book One, focussing on the main protagonists’ relationships.

As usual I won’t give away details, and could not match the many more scholarly reviews of this classic from a future Nobel prizewinner.

Certainly it is clear that the gang taking a trip across France and Spain to witness the fiesta and accompanying bull-fights, behaved as if in a drunken mire. Hemingway, it seems, believed that they were not lost.

We soon learn that he is capable of pared-down, unpoetic description of location, landscape, action, and emotions. He is well able to depict ambivalent characterisation.

The writing continues at a good pace as, eschewing adjectives, he varies his sentence lengths with no loss of fluidity.

Full enjoyment of this work probably requires an appreciation of people having badly and the now controversial sport of bullfighting.

My version is contained in The Essential Hemingway, published in 1964, which also carries a bus ticket, probably from the 1950s.

My penchant for leaving bookmarks in my reading material is described in