Mrs Hemingway by Naomi Wood
Published by Picador
14th February 2014
In the dazzling summer of 1926, Ernest Hemingway and his wife Hadley travel from their home in Paris to a villa in the south of France. They swim, play bridge and drink gin. But wherever they go they are accompanied by the glamorous and irrepressible Fife. Fife is Hadley’s best friend. She is also Ernest’s lover.
Hadley is the first Mrs. Hemingway, but neither she nor Fife will be the last. Over the ensuing decades, Ernest’s literary career will blaze a trail, but his marriages will be ignited by passion and deceit. Four extraordinary women will learn what it means to love the most famous writer of his generation, and each will be forced to ask herself how far she will go to remain his wife…
Luminous and intoxicating, Mrs. Hemingway portrays real lives with rare intimacy and plumbs the depths of the human heart.
This is a fabulous book about the four very different Mrs Hemingway's by Naomi Wood. Having already read an account of Hadley, Hemingway's first wife in The Paris Wife by Paula McLain I was interested to learn more about the other women in his life - and by all accounts there were many!
Naomi Wood has written a fantastic account of the lives of these women, and of their interactions with each other through the man that they love. It was at times sad but fascinating to read of the way that Hemingway treated them, picking them up, and discarding them as and when he chose, yet they all stuck with him until they could take no more.
Initially the wife I felt most sympathy for was Hadley but as the book progressed I began to feel more towards Fife, who out of all of the wives never seemed to manage to let her love for Hemingway lessen. He was cruel but she never stopped loving that man she met in Paris.
I don't think you need to be a fan of Ernest Hemingway's work to enjoy this book. It is a wonderful tale of sultry summers and of passionate love affairs, coupled with seering heartbreak. The paperback edition comes out on the 1st January 2015 and I heartily recommend it.