The Snows of Kilimanjaro by Ernest Hemingway – A Short Story Review

The Snows of Kilimanjaro and Other Stories (Scribner Classics)The Snows of Kilimanjaro and Other Stories by Ernest Hemingway

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Snows of Kilimanjaro was certainly an interesting story. Hemingway wrote of a man (a writer) dying of gangrene on an African safari accompanied by his rich wife. The man had scraped his leg just days earlier but because he neglected to clean it out properly he ended up getting gangrene and was dying on a cot as the story began. Hemingway developed his character through conversation and flashbacks which seems to be pretty consistent with his other books that I have read. He goes into quite a lot of detail about the wife and her past as a rich woman who had many lover.  He goes into minimal detail about the dying man but let’s his conversation, mostly consisting of cutting remarks to his wife and flashbacks of regret, drive his character development. As he lay there dying he regretted many things in his life but mainly he regretted not being able to write everything down. He had spent his whole life waiting to write things down in hopes that he would know more about the world when it was time to write. However, the end of his life came sooner than he anticipated, teaching the lesson that life is short and fragile and should be lived every day to the fullest.

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I read this book to and from work on the train. It was 29 pages long so I was able to finish it easily, even with a 10 minute nap on the ride home from work.

About the Author Ernest Hemingway:

Born in Oak Park, Illinois, in 1899, Ernest Hemingway served in the Red Cross during World War I as an ambulance driver and was severely wounded in Italy. He moved to Paris in 1921, devoted himself to writing fiction, and soon became part of the expatriate community, along with Gertrude Stein, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ezra Pound, and Ford Madox Ford. He revolutionized American writing with his short, declarative sentences and terse prose. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954, and his classic novella The Old Man and the Sea won the Pulitzer Prize in 1953. Known for his larger-than-life personality and his passions for bullfighting, fishing, and big-game hunting, he died in Ketchum, Idaho, on July 2, 1961. (Courtesy of

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One thought on “The Snows of Kilimanjaro by Ernest Hemingway – A Short Story Review

  1. That sounds like a pretty cool story with an interesting lesson. I started a journal a little over a year ago and I wish I had started sooner.