A Young Man in the World
The novels get most of the attention, but our favorite book from Papa is something with a slightly smaller scale: a collection of posthumously compiled short works called The Nick Adams Stories.
Taken together the two dozen stories lead the eponymous hero from boyhood to manhood, with a war, a murder, and a lot of fear-soaked wanderlust lying in between. It’s Hemingway at his quickest, with some of the stories lasting no longer than a paragraph. It’s also Hemingway at his loosest, which means half-formed sketches sitting alongside more polished gems, adding up to an impressionistic portrait of a young man adrift in a turbulent world.
If you’re really sold, we suggest a vintage hardcover copy…but only if you don’t plan on taking it to the beach.
- — Russell Brandom