I have always been more interested in the supporting cast in an artist’s life than in the artist himself. None of us goes it alone and a genius, hungry for attention, least of all.
The Paris Wife is the fictionalized tale of Ernest Hemingway and his first wife Hadley. It’s a bit of a Cinderella story; Hadley is the plain, unsophisticated, infrequently courted girl, Hemingway the handsome and dashing prince who sweeps her off her feet.
In the spirit of full disclosure, The Paris Wife is not officially a romance, in that it does not adhere to the requirements of the genre. It is, however, very much a love story.
The Paris Wife sweeps the reader into the world of writers just after World War I. Ezra Pound, Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, Ford Madox Ford and others swirl through this story. Ernest and Hadley drink, travel, ski and go to the racing of the bulls. Paula McLain writes deftly, immersing the reader in this fantastical world.
This is also a story about who we are as individuals, in a relationship, and how far we can or should stretch to keep both selves alive.
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