The Nick Adams Stories
Ernest Hemingway, The Nick Adams Stories (New York: Scribner, 1972.)
Hemingway’s Nick Adams Stories weren’t published until after his death, but they are most certainly semi-autobiographical. They contain some of the best-written word pictures of trout fishing and skiing in print anywhere. These descriptions alone make the stories well worth reading. Still, there is a sense of something missing as one reads through the stories. Perhaps what is missing is the simple fact that Hemingway didn’t live to put his finishing touches on the stories. Perhaps what is missing is the sense of enduring meaning that Hemingway himself couldn’t find as his life faded into a cycle of depression and alcoholism that ended with his death by suicide.
Far from Hemingway’s best, these stories are nonetheless far better than many short stokes and well worth reading. It would be a great book for a skiing trip or a canoe adventure or a summer vacation.