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Ernest Hemingway: A Biography by Mary V. Dearborn

The first full biography of Ernest Hemingway in more than fifteen years; the first to draw upon a wide array of never-before-used material; the first written by a woman, from the widely acclaimed biographer of Norman Mailer, Peggy Guggenheim, Henry Miller, and Louise Bryant. Ernest Hemingway: A Biography

A revelatory look into the life and work of Ernest Hemingway, considered in his time to be the greatest living American novelist and short-story writer, winner of the 1953 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954. Mary Dearborn’s new biography gives the richest and most nuanced portrait to date of this complex, enigmatically unique American artist, whose same uncontrollable demons that inspired and drove him throughout his life undid him at the end, and whose seven novels and six-short story collections informed–and are still informing–fiction writing generations after his death.


Excitement about Mary V. Dearborn’s
“Dearborn wields both deep research and striking imagination as she charts Hemingway’s path . . . Particularly poignant.”
The National Book Review

“Dearborn offers a unique perspective, and only partially because she’s the first woman to ever write a full biography of Hemingway. She uncovers plenty of fresh material and exposes new sides of the iconic author to the light . . . She explores Hemingway’s life honestly and with grace. Someone with this depth of knowledge and lightness of touch was needed to fully grapple with all the complexities of this haunted and haunting American master. This is now required reading for anyone with more than a passing interest in ‘Papa.’”
—Tyler Malone, Lit Hub

“Insightful . . . Elegantly written . . . Dearborn pointedly looks beyond the legend . . . There have been scores of biographies of Hemingway, some written by friends, some by academics, some by family members. Dearborn’s is the first full-scale biography of the Nobel Prize-winning American writer in 15 years, and it is a worthy addition to the canon—a splendid reassessment that shores up the genius while removing some of the faulty bulwark that has long supported the myth.”
—Robert Weibezahl, BookPage

“Boy, I enjoyed the heck out of this book. Dearborn gets inside Hemingway’s head where the real action is. Dearborn duly documents all that hairy-chested stuff (Four hundred rabbits taken in one day of shooting?). But as this highly readable, companionable biography makes clear, Hemingway was acting out a rage that burned him up inside. It wasn’t exuberance over life that drove him on, but a desire to eat the world alive. This is a biography about a dangerous, brilliant writer.”
—Charles J. Shields, author of Mockingbird: A Portrait of Harper Lee from Scout to Go Set a Watchman

“Mary V. Dearborn, a skilled biographer with access to boatloads of new material, has pushed into virgin territory, going well beyond Papa’s macho poses, digging into the cycles of mania and depression, alcoholism, and suicidality that course through his life like powerful underground streams that kept breaking to the surface. An absorbing and brilliant take on Hemingway.”
—Jay Parini, author of The Last Station and Empire of Self: A Life of Gore Vidal
“Dearborn revisits one of America’s most popular writers with insight and finesse, in this rich, detailed biography of Ernest Hemingway . . . Her fluid narrative and careful research contribute to an impressive biography. Hemingway changed our language and the way we think, she asserts. Dearborn’s account shines from beginning to end, helped by Hemingway’s dramatic life and charismatic personality.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Mary Dearborn’s graceful and objective portrayal of an American icon will surely be the definitive one for generations to come.”
—Deirdre Bair, author of Al Capone: His Life, Legacy, and Legend

“Here is the literary biography for our time, a human document embracing Ernest Hemingway’s blazing genius and overwhelming despair. With clarity and compassion, Mary Dearborn has written a heartbreaking story sure to be talked about for years to come.”
—Marion Meade, author of Dorothy Parker: What Fresh Hell Is This


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