An occasional blog about travel books.  One of my favourites is The Sun also Rises by Ernest Hemingway.   It’s based on people he knew and set in Paris and Spain in the 1920s.  Mainly about British and American expats and their lives there.   Paris in the 1920s sounds very glamorous, references the “Lost Generation” – term coined by Gertrude Stein to mean the generation who grew up and survived the First World War.  Many of them were disoriented and directionless after the War and found it hard to settle.  Once in Spain, we see the contrast between Paris and Pamplona.  Hemingway saw himself as an action man and was keen on bullfighting.  The part of the novel set in Pamplona deals a lot with this.  He thought bullfighting was pure and authentic, unlike the society and life he knew in Paris.  The bullfighting scenes are written so vividly.  Everyone drinks very heavily throughout the novel – not something to be copied LOL.   Pamplona these days is more known for the Running of the Bulls in July.

It’s a great read – some attitudes are definitely dated, but its a good view of life between the wars for a certain section of society.  Makes you want to visit both Paris and Pamplona to spot some of the places the novel describes and maybe find the bars!


Scroll to Top