Customer Reviews for

Islands in the Stream

Average Rating 4.5
( 40 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

Hemingway Does It Better Than Anyone

Islands in the Stream is the best Hemingway novel that I have read to date with the possible exception of The Old Man and the Sea. Hemingway can make the reader feel what he is feeling and experience what he is experiencing better than anyone else. When I read commerc...
Islands in the Stream is the best Hemingway novel that I have read to date with the possible exception of The Old Man and the Sea. Hemingway can make the reader feel what he is feeling and experience what he is experiencing better than anyone else. When I read commercial literature, I finish with a feeling of nothingness. When I read Hemingway, I feel the challenge of life. If you are scared to cry and to hurt and at the same time not give up, stay away from Hemingway. You cannot handle him. But if you wish to 'suck the marrow' from life, grab Islands in the Stream. Read it. Savor it. Let it take you to places you have never been before and experience the deep emotions of life.

posted by Anonymous on May 28, 2000

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Islands in the Stream

the book is not as good as I thought it would be. But there are some good parts in the story and I would not recommend reading Islands in the Stream but you could if you want to.

posted by 2130297 on October 30, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 29, 2007

    My Thoughts

    Ernest Hemingway¿s novel, Islands in the Stream, is broken into three sections, one in Bimini, two in Cuba, and three at sea. I choose the book because I had previously read The Old Man and the Sea and I loved it. I asked my father for to recommend me a book similar to that and this is what he chose. The different sections of the book shinned light on the different attitudes the main character developed through the novel. Honestly, I liked the book. It was nothing spectacular, but it was well written and very interesting. I spend a lot of time in the Island of Bimini and have gazed upon the sunsets and the beaches Hemingway so accurately depicts. The reason I do not love the book is because although the book hints at many messages, I don¿t believe that Hemingway had a particular purpose in mind when he wrote it. The authors tone is very dynamic. The time Hudson spent with his boys differs from the time Hudson spent in Cuba, which differs from the time Hudson spent at sea. In Bimini Hudson was happy. He had a good thing going for himself. He had a solid work ethic which involved exercise in the mourning, painting in the afternoon, and reading in the evenings. During the summer, he stopped working because his children came to stay with him on the island. Hudson enjoyed his summers in Bimini until his boys died. Once Hudson left Bimini and moved to Cuba, he was a different man. He no longer was an artist and he seemed to take a lot less joy out of life. The mood of the book had darkened. Later on, in the third act, Hudson is chasing down a group of Germans who have committed murder. He is the captain of his vessel and he took his job very seriously and his men respected him for it. The tone of the final section of the book is one of authoritive command. Hudson was a leader, and he repressed his own feelings to appear stronger for his crew. What I gained out of the book is to work first and play later. If you mix the both, neither activities are well done or enjoyed. Thomas Hudson lived on a tropical island with a few friends who were all borderline alcoholics. If he did not distinguish work from play, he would never have gotten anything done. Also in the novel Hudson suffers the loss of his three sons and ex-wife. He did not spend much time with his children, but the time he did spend with them was very precious. When his children died he drank heavily. He moved to Cuba, and did some reconnaissance work for the U.S. Army. He let the tragedy of his children¿s death get the best of him. He was not the same person afterwards and it showed. What I took from this is that remembrance of life is important, but to dwell and long for the impossible is just a waist. While living in Cuba, Hudson was naturally lonely. He resorted to cats and prostitutes for love and affection. As much as Hudson tried to shun himself away from the world, people still need companionship. In the end, I would recommend this book because it does send multiple messages and I can personally relate to many of the experiences Hemingway wrote of in Bimini.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2005

    First Experience

    'Islands in the Stream' is the first Hemingway book I have ever read, however, I was not familiar with his style of writing and it was hard for me to get into the story at first. After reading a few chapters I understood his style and the reading became very interesting. He presented the main character, Tom as a painter and adventurer. The mood of the story changes many times.Tom has more than his share of misfortune, but through it all he stays strong. Hemingway has a very descriptive style of presenting his characters and the settings they are in. He describes them down to the smallest detail.He also has a flair for setting the scene in your mind as you read. By the time I finished this story, I had made the decision that I would read another one of his books. I recommend this book to anyone who likes story with a lot of adventure,some good and some bad.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 4, 2004

    Good eye for inner life of cats

    Michael Palin followed Ernest Hemingway's trail through Europe Africa and N. America. He spent some time in Key West, where thousands of tourists try to get to know Hemingway a bit by seeing his house and cats descendents. A better way might be to read the middle of Islands in the Stream, where you can meet Boise and his offspring and share his suffering as Thomas Hudson is called to sea in World War II as a submarine skipper.

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    Posted March 22, 2011

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    Posted April 25, 2012

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    Posted March 14, 2010

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    Posted January 29, 2011

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    Posted September 16, 2013

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