I enjoyed this novel immensely. The description of the characters and settings was wonderful. McLain paints a vivid picture of the literary scene in Paris after WWI, and how Ernest and Hadley Hemingway fit into it. After reading this fictionalized account of their lives together, I am anxious to read a biography of Hemingway to learn more about this man, as well as re-read some of his books.
Alpaca farmer, gardener, poet. Loves reading & listening to books, music, writing, and learning. Life is good!
I loved this book. It gave the other side of the story to Hemingway's "A Moveable Feast." I would recommend reading (or listening) to Hemingway's book first, then listen to this one. It fills in a lot of blanks and gives more detail to what their life might have been like during the Paris years. .This story gave a life-like depiction of Hemingway (warts and all) and the writer he was through the eyes of the woman closest to him.
I wasn't sure about the narrator at first, but I quckly got used to her voice, and before long, it seemed as if I were listening to Hadley herself tell her story, and the narration of the other characters being as Hadley would have heard and imitated them. I just may listen to this one again someday.
I just listened to this and really enjoyed it. The story is both sweet and bitter. The narrator is very good. I really got the feeling for the crowd, the time, the life of the Hemmingway's and their friends. it's a nice, easy read, pretty easy to keep track of all the characters. I recommend listening.
As a fan of Ernest Hemingway, I was really looking forward to this book. Several chapters in, I realized that I was not enjoying it. I soon realized that it was not the book itself, but the reader that was getting in my way. Carrington MacDuffie reads this book with a cultured tone that softens the edges of Ernest and his macho friends, and gives a simpering, whiney tone to Hadley. I wish I had chosen to read the book instead.
Is this a good book? I'm struggling to decide if I liked it or not. The reader really ruined it for me. She made the characters sound like cartoon characters in a goofy sitcom. Her attempts to sound masculine made me cringe. Perhaps she would be more suited to reading humor or juvenile fiction. I found myself trying to imagine the words read differently...more what I think the author intended, so that I could enjoy the story more. And this was very distracting. I really enjoy reading historical fiction, but I'm not sure if this is one to recommend. Was it as empty and flat as it seemed? Maybe. It kept going through my mind that I was reading fluff, but it could have been the reader that gave me that impression.
I like others researched Hemingway's life while listening. I was truly moved by Hadley's plight and her strength! I thoroughly enjoyed the story and loved being swept away to Paris and their other travels.
I don't have much to add to the previous review. But the genre of fiction "based on" fact is an interesting one, probably challenging for the writer. What to leave in, what to leave out, etc. This book inspired me to research Hemingway for more details on his fantastic, adventurous life.
This could be the start of a possible series on the Hemingway wives and the transitions amongst them.
Addicted to Audible!
I first tried the book version of Paris Wife and could not get into it. Since I had to "read" it for my bookclub I decided to try audible. I saw the negative reviews on the narrator but forged ahead anyway. I agree that she was hard to listen to, but I couldn't read the hard copy either, so it wasnt the reader that made it intolerable for me. What is it that has made this book so popular? I guess it is just the fascination with Hemingway and the time period. I enjoyed the movie, Midnight in Paris, so I thought I would enjoy this. Instead I found it boring, boring and more boring. I couldn't listen past the first 4 hrs. I tried but it was a waste of time. I just couldn't like or empathize with any of the characters, they were all self-indulgent elitist snobs who acted like spoiled children. I am sure most people will not agree with me, but I really disliked this book.
Excellent fictional insight - terrible reader. I went out and bought the book in lieu of listening past Chapter 4. A wasted credit.
Like others have noted, I was distracted from narrative by the prissy and juvenile tone that MacDuffie imparted. I found myself rethinking the lines as she spoke them with how I might have actually read the lines myself. It was like listening to two books simultaneously. I'll stay away from this narrator in the future but not the author.