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Customer Review

on 15 September 2013
The first thing to be said about this book is that the editing is atrocious. I have never before seen so many errors in any book from a recognised publisher.
Its second fault is that it is superficial and repetitive, failing to develop themes - such as Hemingway's alleged homosexuality - that are tantalisingly referred to throughout the book.
Its third major fault is that it is structurally sloppy, the closing chapters reading like a very poor clippings job.
In spite of all this, however, I quite enjoyed it because it told me things about Hemingway I didn't know in a facile but engaging style. Whereas Carlos Baker's biography of Hemingway was tediously detailed and very hard going, this was sketchily lucid and actually quite readable.
However, A E Hotchner's Papa Hemingway remains by far the best word portrait of the old braggart, and has the additional merit of being authentic, as Hotchner and Hemingway were pals.
For anyone wanting an emphatically non-scholarly insight into Hemingway, Malone's book is adequate. Just don't allow yourself to be diverted by the typos along the way.
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3.0 out of 5 stars