For Whom the Bell Tolls

For Whom the Bell Tolls

Paperback

By (author) Ernest Hemingway

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  • Publisher: VINTAGE
  • Format: Paperback | 496 pages
  • Dimensions: 128mm x 196mm x 24mm | 322g
  • Publication date: 27 May 1999
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0099289822
  • ISBN 13: 9780099289821
  • Sales rank: 8,112

Product description

High in the pine forests of the Spanish Sierra, a guerrilla band prepares to blow up a vital bridge. Robert Jordan, a young American volunteer, has been sent to handle the dynamiting. There, in the mountains, he finds the dangers and the intense comradeship of war. And there he discovers Maria, a young woman who has escaped from Franco's rebels...

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Author information

Ernest Hemingway was born in Chicago in 1899, the second of six children. In 1917, he joined the Kansas City Star as a cub reporter. The following year, he volunteered as an ambulance driver on the Italian front, where he was badly wounded but decorated for his services. He returned to America in 1919, and married in 1921. In 1922, he reported on the Greco-Turkish war before resigning from journalism to devote himself to fiction. He settled in Paris, associating with other expatriates like Ezra Pound and Gertrude Stein. He was passionately involved with bullfighting, big-game hunting and deep-sea fishing. Recognition of his position in contemporary literature came in 1954 when he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature, following the publication of The Old Man and the Sea. He died in 1961.

Review quote

"One of the greatest novels which our troubled age will produce" Observer "A sparse, masculine, world-weary meditation on death, ideology and the savagery of war in general, and the Spanish civil war in particular" Sunday Telegraph "For Whom the Bell Tolls allowed us to actually see the experience of an irregular struggle, from the political and military point of view...That book became a familiar part of my life. And we always went back to it, consulted it, to find inspiration" -- Fidel Castro Observer "I read as a kid, of course, but it didn't get me like that till I read For Whom the Bell Tolls. I was very taken with that book. I still reread sections, though I'm now reading it not for the thrill of the story but for the technique and craft of it." -- Gene Wilder Daily Mail "The best book Hemingway has written" New York Times

Editorial reviews

This is good Hemingway. It has some of the tenderness of A Farewell to Arms and some of its amazing power to make one feel inside the picture of a nation at war, of the people experiencing war shorn of its glamor, of the emotions that the effects of war - rather than war itself - arouse. But in style and tempo and impact, there is greater resemblance to The Sun Also Rises. Implicit in the characters and the story is the whole tragic lesson of Spain's Civil War, proving ground for today's holocaust, and carrying in its small compass, the contradictions, the human frailties, the heroism and idealism and shortcomings. In retrospect the thread of the story itself is slight. Three days, during which time a young American, a professor who has taken his Sabbatical year from the University of Montana to play his part in the struggle for Loyalist Spain and democracy. He is sent to a guerilla camp of partisans within the Fascist lines to blow up a strategic bridge. His is a complex problem in humanity, a group of undisciplined, unorganized natives, emotionally geared to go their own way, while he has a job that demands unreasoning, unwavering obedience. He falls in love with a lovely refugee girl, escaping the terrors of a fascist imprisonment, and their romance is sharply etched against a gruesome background. It is a searing book; Hemingway has done more to dramatize the Spanish War than any amount of abstract declamation. Yet he has done it through revealing the pettinesses, the indignities, the jealousies, the cruelties on both sides, never glorifying simply presenting starkly the belief in the principles for which these people fought a hopeless war, to give the rest of the world an interval to prepare. There is something of the implacable logic of Verdun in the telling. It's not a book for the thin-skinned; it has more than its fill of obscenities and the style is clipped and almost too elliptical for clarity at times. But it is a book that repays one for bleak moments of unpleasantness. (Kirkus Reviews)