A New York Times Bestseller A Washington Post Notable Book of 2016 "The story behind Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises is totally captivating, smartly written, and provocative." —Glamour "Meticulously document[ed] ... pacily written ... Ms. Blume has drawn deeply upon many sources, particularly Hemingway’s own correspondence, to deftly portray the cast of lost characters, their thin-skinned vanities and their quarrelsome insecurities." —The Wall Street Journal "Fiendishly readable ... a deeply, almost obsessively researched biography of a book, supported by a set of superb endnotes worth reading in their own right." —Washington Post "Masterfully told ... “Everybody Behaves Badly” is deeply evocative and perceptive, and every page has a Hemingway-like ring of unvarnished truth." —Christian Science Monitor "[A] must-read ... In Lesley M.M. Blume's latest release, escape to the real-life world of Hemingway's groundbreaking piece of modern literature, The Sun Also Rises. The boozy, rowdy nights in Paris, the absurdities at Pamplona's Running of the Bulls and the hungover brunches of the true Lost Generation come to life in this intimate look at the lives of the author's expatriate comrades." —Harper's Bazaar "[An] impeccably researched and resonant account of the true story behind The Sun Also Rises ... Everybody Behaves Badly breaks ground by stressing how important The Sun Also Rises was in bringing modernist literature to a commercial audience and, especially, the part Fitzgerald played in helping to encourage Hemingway and shape his manuscript." —The Financial Times “Without sounding unduly disapproving or moralistic, Blume gives us a portrait of the artist as a young opportunist … [an] excellent book.” —The Times Literary Supplement “My favorite book of 2016 ... a fascinating recreation of one of the most mythic periods in American literature—the one set in Paris in the ’20s—and about the writers and artists who were drawn there: Hemingway’s friends, mentors, lovers, and enemies. Everyone behaved badly indeed, Hemingway worst of all, which is one reason it’s hard to stop reading.” —Jay McInerney "As meticulous a history of the early 20th Century as it is a true drama-fueled page-turner starring characters like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Everybody Behaves Badly ticks both beach read and academic columns." —Tory Burch Daily "A spirited account of a spirited age, when writers saw an opportunity to change the culture ... Blume presents a sharp portrait of a young nobody desperately, sometimes maliciously, trying to become a great — if not thegreat — writer of his time. Despite the wobbly tower of books about Hemingway, it seems we can’t keep from returning to him, and writers like Blume make it worth our while." —Los Angeles Review of Books "Thick with juicy details...[with] a fascinating epilogue ... Blume writes that the outline alone for her book ran to 1,400 pages. And every page of that labor is visible." —Dallas Morning News “[A] vivid character- and fact-filled book … One of the distinguishing features of Everybody Behaves Badly is just how crammed with anecdotes and facts it is — not to mention judgment and analysis. Ms. Blume has cast her net wide and dug deeply and intelligently into primary and secondary sources. And it is precisely all this assiduousness on her part that makes this such a valuable addition to the vast literature on Hemingway, modernism, Paris in the 1920s, [and] expatriate American culture … Ms. Blume spares us none of the gory details of betrayals — literary and personal — naked ambition, ruthlessness, and all manner of nastiness that went into the making of [Hemingway’s] stunning debut.” —The Washington Times "Blume's achievement is doubly remarkable. As an award-winning journalist and cultural historian, she revisits the intense nightlife of Parisian bars and cafes and the explosive, rivalrous drama of Pamplona in a chiseled, precise style that would please the master himself. By filling in Hemingway's purposeful silences and omissions with the story's real-life people and actual events, she accentuates the author's artistic genius and enlarges our understanding of the novel's complex characters and themes. This is a book for novice Hemingway readers as well as veterans of his work." —The Tampa Bay Times"Everybody Behaves Badly is a page-turner of the highest order, chock-a-block with more scandal than the latest issue of Us magazine. It also offers deep insight into the paradox that is Hemingway himself ... It all makes for fascinating reading, and Blume’s style, which has been compared to Flannery O’Connor and Truman Capote, is easy and engaging." —Winnipeg Free Press"A wonderful book." —The Chicago Tribune "[A] revealing reconstruction of Ernest Hemingway’s revelry with friends in Pamplona, Spain, in 1925 and how it became the source of his groundbreaking modernist novel “The Sun Also Rises.” —The Sacramento Bee "In 1925, Ernest Hemingway and five companions traveled to Pamplona for six debaucherous weeks of booze, sex, and bullfighting that inspired The Sun Also Rises. Blume uncovers the truth behind the foundational roman à clef of the Lost Generation." —Departures "Everybody Behaves Badly is the rollicking back story to Hemingway’s vigorous work that cut American writing to the bone….Blume’s excellent work enriches us with new research put to artful purpose.” —Buffalo News
"Richly gossipy, beautifully illustrated (with some period photographs that the reader had actually never run across before), and lavishly well written ... Blume’s full bore research is matched only by her own gift with words. Everybody Behaves Badly makes for a fine addition to the bookshelf that already contains Hemingway’s own A Moveable Feast, as well as Nancy Mitford’s Zelda, A. E. Hotchner’s Papa Hemingway, and Calvin Tompkins’ exquisite Living Well Is the Best Revenge. It is just that good." —New York Journal of Books “The Lost Generation – in all its depression and excess – was immortalized in The Sun Also Rises. Now, cultural critic Blume pens the true story of that infamous 1925 trip to Pamploma from which Hemingway drew his inspiration, delving into the salacious travails of the group that would define an era of modern literature.” - DuJour “Blume’s Everybody Behaves Badly can live squarely on its own as a commentary on Hemingway’s post-war, expatriate psychology of creativity and its cost to his personal relationships.” —Signature "As the old saying goes, truth is stranger than fiction. And the two often intertwine, as we learn in Lesley M.M. Blume’s mesmerizing account of the young Ernest Hemingway in Paris in the 1920s as he prepares to write his breakout debut novel,The Sun Also Rises….Blume’s book is nonfiction, impeccably documented. Yet, like Hemingway’s fictional masterpiece, it reminds us that real life can inspire great stories and writing." —Book Page "A biography of a novel...Everybody Behaves Badly is itself an engrossing and varied tale: raucous and dissipated, pitiable and serious. Blume's research offers new detail to a well-studied story, and her narrative style is as entertaining as the original. Obviously required for Hemingway fans, this engaging work of nonfiction will also please a broad audience." —Shelf Awareness for Readers "[An] intelligent opus ... adtroit ... spectacularly good ... Blume provides a wealth of knowledge in the tightly packed 332-page study of Hemingway." —Idaho Mountain Express
Journalist and author Blume (Let's Bring Back) focuses on the events in Ernest Hemingway's life from his 1921 arrival in Paris to the publication of The Sun Also Rises in 1926. Drawing on a rich cache of "Lost Generation" memoirs, as well as Hemingway's and his contemporaries' correspondence, the author portrays Hemingway as a ruthless egotist bent on achieving his literary ambitions, often at the expense of early supporters, including Sherwood Anderson, Gertrude Stein, and Robert McAlmon. Researching the actual trips that form the basis for the roman à clef's account of the San Fermín festival in Pamplona, Spain, Blume reveals how Hemingway transformed the lives of his expatriate friends by turning them into memorable characters in what was soon to become a masterwork of American literature. An epilog follows the lives of those depicted in the wake of the novel's publication. There is also valuable information on the story's editing, marketing, sales, and reception. VERDICT Bloom brings together in one place a wealth of information on Hemingway's first novel that will appeal to students and general readers alike. It may also lead those looking to delve deeper to peruse some of the author's sources, including Hemingway's own A Moveable Feast, Harold Loeb's The Way It Was, and Bertram D. Sarason's Hemingway and the Sun Set. [See Prepub Alert, 1/4/16.]—William Gargan, Brooklyn Coll. Lib., CUNY
The Lost Generation returns. In 1925, desperately ambitious Ernest Hemingway found the subject for his first novel in the antics of the hard-drinking, bed-hopping companions who accompanied him to a bull-fighting festival in Pamplona, Spain. Working feverishly, and with malice, Hemingway immortalized the misbehaving bunch in The Sun Also Rises, the novel that made him a literary star, acclaimed for the "terse innovative prose" that seemed stunningly modern. Journalist Blume (Julia and the Art of Practical Travel, 2015, etc.) offers a brisk rendering of a familiar Lost Generation story featuring its most colorful protagonist: Hemingway comes to Paris with his young wife, Hadley, who loses his manuscript on a train. During that time, Hemingway met Ezra Pound, Gertrude Stein, Ford Madox Ford, Robert McAlmon, and Harold Loeb, most of whom he came to despise. F. Scott Fitzgerald, already famous, encouraged Hemingway and connected him with Max Perkins at Scribner's, who edited, published, and aggressively marketed The Sun Also Rises. Hemingway had an affair with the predatory Pauline Pfeiffer, which ended his marriage, and he defiantly created his image as a tough man, hunter, boxer, and predator. "Hemingway had a little bit of poison for everyone," writes Blume, "and he was becoming quite adept at co-opting the lives and vulnerabilities of others as grist for his literary mill." Of all those behaving badly, surely he was the worst, betraying his wife and many who mistakenly thought they were his friends. He wounded Sherwood Anderson by publishing a vicious parody of his work and responding to Anderson's pain with a pretentious, patronizing letter. Hemingway, Anderson and Stein agreed, was an "ungrateful protégé." Blume brings in some fresh material drawn from two interviews with Patrick Hemingway and with descendants of some Lost Generation figures, but most material comes from memoirs, biographies, and letters that have informed many other narratives. Though not groundbreaking, Blume's reimagining of 1920s Paris and its scandalous denizens is vivid, spirited, and absorbing.