Re: RARA-AVIS: Paying by weight (was Dennis Lehane)

From: Mark Sullivan (
Date: 02 Mar 2000

PB asked Dave:

"Interesting critical stance. How'd you feel about THE OLD MAN & THE SEA?"

I just finished saying some books are best short and tight. However, I would not use Old Man and the Sea as my example (if I were going to the classics, I'd probably choose Heart of Darkness). I always thought the reason this book was so popular among high school English teachers was because the symbolism was so overt, knocked you over the head, that no student could possibly miss it. As so often happens with the Oscars, Hemingway's late career award was probably more about honoring his entire career than for the particular work under question.


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