Mrs. Hemingway - Naomi Wood

Title: Mrs. Hemingway
Author: Naomi Wood
Pages: 336
Published: 2014
Challenges Blogger Summer Reading, Historical Fiction
Genre: Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction
Edition: Trade Paperback
Source: Personal

Description: [T]ells the story of how it was to love, and be loved by, the most famous and dashing writer of his generation. Hadley, Pauline, Martha and Mary: each Mrs. Hemingway thought their love would last forever; each one was wrong.

Told in four parts and based on real love letters and telegrams, Mrs. Hemingway reveals the explosive love triangles that wrecked each of Hemingway's marriages. Spanning 1920s bohemian Paris through 1960s Cold War America, populated with members of the fabled "Lost Generation," Mrs. Hemingway is a riveting tale of passion, love, and heartbreak. (via Goodreads)

Thoughts: I first heard about the book through You Wrote the Book, a podcast hosted by The Reader's Simon Savage, when he interviewed Naomi Wood about this book and another novel she has written, and I was interested in the book, especially since I had really enjoyed reading The Paris Wife the previous summer.

I wasn't at all disappointed.  I liked how Ms. Wood structured the book, using the beginning and ending of each of Hemingway's four marriages as the areas that were primarily focused on.  I also liked that while the book was fairly easy to read, it also had a depth to the narration, as though the author cared about each of the four women that she wrote about as individuals.  The prose was made to seem effortless and moved with a consistent cadence that made it easy to pick up and read a section, even after not reading it for a few days.

There were some things that made it difficult to read at times, but they were minor and few and were mostly due to me not able to focus on the story at hand.

Bottom line:  While it appears to be a light read, there is a depth to the book and I look forward to whatever Ms. Wood writes in the future.  If you enjoyed The Paris Wife by Paula McLain, you will enjoy this expansion of that story.  Highly recommended.

Rating: 4.75/5

Pages for 2014: 19,349

If you have read this book, what did you think of it?


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