I was an English major in college, and I prided myself on thinking I was a better person than most people because I liked to read (anyone relate?). I mean, I didn’t actually think I was better than most people, but I really believed that because I liked to read—read good books, not trashy chick lit—I was somehow…smarter? More well-rounded? I don’t know, it sounds so gross to actually type out.
Since college, the quality of books I read has sort of gone downhill. I still love reading before bed, and that’s about the only time I do anymore. So I usually settle for something cute and easy to read. Nothing too deep, since I’m liable to nod off during it. And not too long. God forbid a chapter is more than 20 pages (I’m one of those people who can’t stop reading mid-chapter).
But a couple weeks ago, I found myself wanting to read something of substance. Something classic. Something that would make me think. So I turned to one of my favorite books by my favorite authors, The Sun Also Rises.
I haven’t read this since college or shortly thereafter, and I couldn’t remember much about it. Bullfighting, Spain, something about fishing. And I remembered the ending, because it is so completely heartbreaking.
I love Hemingway because his writing is so clean and simple and accessible to everyone. There’s not much that happens in this story: The bullfights are described in incredible detail. There’s a lot of drinking. A lot of descriptions of meals. The characters are flawed and frustrating, and there’s not really a lot to love about most of them.
But something about this book is comforting and beautiful to me. I love it the same way I love The Darjeeling Limited. Once a friend asked me to identify why I liked that movie…and I couldn’t think of anything specific. I just love it. I love the colors and music and costumes and that it’s on a train. And that’s how I love The Sun Also Rises. I love the wine and fishing and bullfights and long descriptions of what Jake does in the morning.
I don’t really feel qualified to “review” this book, as if my little blog post would really matter anyways. But if you haven’t read this, you should give it a try. 🙂