Bedside Reading: December 2015

Dec 01, 2015 | by Menaka Iyer

Our Bedside Reading series features our monthly book recommendation to help you ramp up your literature game and sleep more soundly. Trust us—it’s better than one last Instagram scroll before bedtime.

A Farewell To Arms by Ernest Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway may have been a misogynist, he may have had a drinking problem, and he may have expatriated himself from the United States the first chance he got, but he also produced some of the most profoundly American literature in our country’s history.

A Farewell to Arms is one of Ernest Hemingway’s most important and celebrated works. The story, a tragic tale of violence, treason, and romance during World War I in Italy, is not far from Hemingway’s own experience at war. Both he and his protagonist, Frederic Henry, are American ambulance drivers badly injured during their service in the Italian army. They then fall in love with a beautiful nurse while recovering in a hospital in Milan. From there, the narratives diverge and the story on the page is a sordid, depressing sequence of events that will make you grateful for your comfortable bed and a warm place to sleep. While no doubt a heavy read, by the end, you will have a deep appreciation for each sentence Hemingway crafts, each thought he imparts.

Through January 31, 2015, there will be a fascinating exhibit at NYC’s Morgan Library displaying Ernest Hemingway’s unpublished writing, drafts, and correspondence with friends and lovers throughout his lifetime. There we learned that Hemingway wrote 47 endings to A Farewell to Arms before settling on the one he published. If your will is as strong as Hemingway’s himself, a version of the book was recently published containing all 47 endings for your up-late-at-night reading pleasure.

Bedside Reading

Nothing beats a bedtime story. We’re taking this opportunity to dive into one of the titles we should have read by now, but haven’t. Let’s admit it: we’ve all pulled a Jay Gatsby. Hundreds of books lining the shelves, and many we’ve never touched.

Our Bedside Reading series features monthly book recommendations to ramp up your literature game and sleep more soundly. Trust us—it’s better than one last Instagram scroll.

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