Book Review- The Old Man and the Sea

It is always disappointing when you have written an entire review and as a last step, click on something to upload the book cover pic and the entire thing just vanishes!! 😦

Anyways, I’ll retype everything. I really wanted to have at least one post on the first day of the year to keep the ball rolling on the other days!

I’ll start with Happy New year 2016!! Last year was when I started my blog and I have been very lazy with it. I hardly write a few book/ movie reviews, started a crappy Daily Quote series, posted a travelogue and that is all. I read more than 25 books in one year but haven’t reviewed all. There were days when I saw back to back movies but I didn’t review any of them. Same is the case with my almost dormant Zomato account.

Well, I am here to change things my friends! Starting with this book review of Old man and the sea.

Old man and the sea

This book is a short story by Ernest Hemingway and was published in 1950s. It won Pulitzer and was one of the major reasons why Hemingway won Nobel for Literature. It is a very short book, probably can be finished in a single sitting. Books like this, Animal Farm or The great Gatsby makes me wonder how a book so small as these can be so profound. It amazes me that when I sit to write something, it takes me 3 lines to make a point when these authors will probably use just half a line.

The book is about Santiago- or the Old Man who is a fisherman consider unlucky as he hadn’t caught a fish in 84 days! The story is about his sailing trip on the 85th day and if the day changes things for him.

While Santiago is the main protagonist, we sure have others playing an important role- The beautiful Marlin with the fighting spirit of a competent adversary for Santiago, Manolin- The young boy who is like a son to Santiago and who is shown to have the innocence and compassion which most of the others lose in the process of “growing up”. While the relation between Manolin and Santiago constituted hardly 5% of the plot; it however was the best for me. The discussion about football player Joe, the faith and confidence in each other- the relation was something each of us share with someone at least once in our lifetime.

The story, the end can have multiple interpretations, multiple lessons that we learn. Times when weΒ tire our or burn out completely in order to accomplish something only to end up with nothing. But does it really mean we are left with nothing at all?

When Santiago tries to catch the fish, all he thinks of his how others will feel when they see how big a fish he’s caught. Or how much money it’ll fetch or how many people it could feed.

The struggle for so many days practically ends up to nothing, or that’s what we feel. Sometimes the fact that we struggle itself earns us respect and value even if that doesn’t get us money or livelihood.

I do not have any lines or quotes from this book. The story was fiction plus philosophy and was really profound but you never find something that you would want to quote. This is something I had heard about Hemingway even before. His writing style is very unique and simple. There is nothing flowery and yet it connects with you somewhere.

I recommend this book to anyone who genuinely enjoys reading quality books!

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About Maya

Bored of the tedium and tired of the rut, I look for shelter in my imaginary hut; Behind these veils of propriety and decorum, I desperately seek a liberating forum; In my words and humor you'll find fire But beware and warned, It's all just Maya! Come, see my world through my window..

Posted on January 1, 2016, in Book Reviews and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. I really enjoyed this book too! The writing style is simple yet powerful, and the plot line follows a very basic “W” style, with various low points, high points and satisfactory ending. It really is an example of how an author can still write a brilliant book without having to rely on the large flowery words that so many budding authors feel they need to include. Great review!

    Also, doesn’t WordPress automatically save drafts as you type so you don’t lose everything? There have been times when I’ve accidentally gone and closed a whole browser when I just wanted to close a tab, but WordPress had always saved an earlier version of my post. Yours might be different though πŸ˜•

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for reading and sharing your thoughts.:) The W style is something new. I didn’t know this style has a name to it. But yes, budding authors try too hard to use flowery words while in reality, what is required is a connect with the reader. My WordPress did save a draft; however in my attempt to reverse the changes, I kept clicking on some random icons and my saved draft itself was empty! 😦 . Anyways, what I wrote the second time was better structured. So, no worries πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Finally got around to reading this book! Still reeling from that end, but I like to believe that the boy brought good luck to the old man in their later expeditions. You could already see how it had won him respect and admiration among his townsfolk.
    What I loved the most is Santiago’s interaction with the big fish, and the respect he showed towards it even after he killed it.
    Hoping to see more book reviews from you? Btw, haven’t you heard about the Chennai lit fest?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, the book and the interpretation was great!

      I will be posting more reviews. Do read Cat’s cradle too.

      I couldn’t go to Lit Fest this year. I had a vacation planned. Would be posting my travelogue soon ( Soon, by my standards is not all that soon πŸ™‚ ) How did you like it?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Well a vacay takes first preference anyway, you could always watch these sessions on Youtube later πŸ™‚ (And tell me about it, I’m YET to finish my travelogue for a trip that I went in the first week of Jan!!!)
        As for the lit fest, yep it was an interesting three days for sure! So many thoughtful discussions and debates and picked up some new authors as well. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

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