Sunday, March 13, 2011

The Paris Wife

By Paula McLain

From the book jacket:

"In Chicago in 1920, Hadley Richardson is a quiet twenty-eight-year-old who has all but given up on love and happiness—until she meets Ernest Hemingway and finds herself captivated by his good looks, intensity, and passionate desire to write. Following a whirlwind courtship and wedding, the pair set sail for Paris, where they become the golden couple in a lively and volatile group of expatriates that includes Gertrude Stein, Ezra Pound, and F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald. But the hard-drinking and fast-living café life does not celebrate traditional notions of family and monogamy. As Hadley struggles with jealousy and self-doubt and Ernest wrestles with his burgeoning writing career, they must confront a deception that could prove the undoing of one of the great romances in literary history."

Just my opinion:

I very much enjoyed this fictional account of the life of Hadley and Ernest Hemingway. It read like a wonderful movie set against the backdrop of one of the most romantic cities in the world. Or so it would seem.

Paris has long been known as a city of love, but the tensions that develop between friends and couples make you wonder if it’s all a façade. For Hadley and Ernest, it means their life together became complicated and difficult at times.

Although it’s obvious they love each other very much, the pressures eventually become their undoing. And because you’ve rooted for them from the beginning of the book, the end of their marriage has a sad tone that’s difficult to ignore.

At first, it may seem like I’m writing spoilers, but we all know from history that the marriage was doomed. It’s the story itself that makes you want to read the marvelous words Paula McLain has penned. She brings this tale to the pages in such a way that keeps you engrossed throughout. And as you learn to love this couple, you want to reach into the book and warn them of the impending circumstances that lead to the demise of their relationship.

It’s an excellent novel and you will definitely enjoy the journey.

Be sure to check out the website at for more information, including photos, a reader’s guide and more.

1 comment:

Cheryl said...

Thanks for the great review of Paula's book. I'm glad you enjoyed it.