Girlhood Memories from Mary McCarthy

I loved this book! I absolutely loved it. Yes, it was a collection of essays about author Mary McCarthy’s childhood that at times were written intellectually, but it had the charm and flourish of her creative voice. After each chapter, she included a commentary chapter, explaining how much of the essay was true and how... Continue Reading →

On My Bookshelf, No. 5

I have what builders call a “plant shelf” in my master bedroom.  When my husband and I first moved into our home thirteen years ago, I had no idea what to put on that shelf.  I tried some leftover wedding flowers and random plants, but it didn’t look good at all.  As I began collecting... Continue Reading →

How Poe Wrote “The Raven”

“The Raven” (1845) is a poem nobody can escape. Whether you had to memorize certain stanzas or just participate in a read-aloud session in seventh-grade English class, it is a classic poem you likely haven’t missed and one you likely haven’t forgotten. I don’t think I’ll ever tire of the repetitious words at the end... Continue Reading →

Hemingway Week: The Sun Also Rises

When I first read The Sun Also Rises (1926) by Ernest Hemingway, I was an undergraduate student in a class on American Modernism.  My professor was a tall bald man who said the word “modernity” in a nasally voice at least 100 times every class period.  It was hard not to laugh and smirk when... Continue Reading →

Hemingway Week: Short Stories

I’ve read a few different short story collections by Ernest Hemingway.  Here are my musings on some of the specific stories in those collections. “Soldier’s Home,” from the collection In Our Time (1925), is a product of Modernism, a literary and social movement surrounding World War I in which the world experienced dramatic change.  Harold... Continue Reading →

Hemingway Week: For Whom the Bell Tolls

Although loss of faith is characteristic of the Modernist era, Ernest Hemingway does not shy away from using religious themes in his novels.  One of the most striking examples is the use of Biblical references in For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940).  Hemingway uses Biblical imagery as a way of showing his characters’ religious devotion... Continue Reading →

Hemingway Week: Bitch Goddesses

Warning: This post explores the literary term “bitch goddess,” and I therefore use that word frequently.  I understand that this is offensive and upsetting to some people, so please don’t take it personally and please don’t read this post if strong language offends you. Female characters in Hemingway’s work are often called “bitch goddesses,” who... Continue Reading →

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