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Book Review: 'The Only Thing That Counts: The Ernest Hemingway-Maxwell Perkins Correspondence'

Posted on

The Only Thing That Counts: The Ernest Hemingway-Maxwell Perkins Correspondence

type:
Book
Current Status:
In Season
author:
Ernest Hemingway, Maxwell Perkins
publisher:
Scribner
genre:
Biography, Nonfiction

We gave it an A

When cell phones don’t exist and a transatlantic call is a major production, what’s a Paris-based author from the jazz age to do? Write letters, of course, hundreds of them, to his New York City editor, most capped off with every writer’s plea, ”God knows I need the money.” In The Only Thing That Counts: The Ernest Hemingway-Maxwell Perkins Correspondence, a sprawling, amusing, and highly readable exchange between the Nobel Prize winner and his fabled editor, Max Perkins, Hemingway reveals his views on lit (”True narrative… is as hard to do as paint a Cezanne — and I’m the only bastard right now who can do it”), not-so-happy hours with F. Scott Fitzgerald, Gertrude Stein, and James Joyce, and triumphs of safaris past. A