RARA-AVIS: Red Badge of Courage

From: Michael Robison ( miker_zspider@yahoo.com)
Date: 18 Jun 2007

I have wanted to read this all my life and finally got around to it. I can understand why it's an American classic. I was surprised to a certain extent. I always had the impression it was a cynical anti-war commentary and I was prepared for that, but there were strong themes of courage and honor and what would become Hemingway's main theme, grace under pressure.

Although I guess this is his magnum opus, I liked it less than everything else I've read by him. The intense introversion was claustrophobic. I think Maggie: A Girl of the Streets is spectacular (right up there with Conrad's Heart of Darkness), and I've also been impressed by several of his stories.


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