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Publisher's Summary

Still considered one of the best books ever written about bullfighting, Death in the Afternoon reflects Hemingway's belief that bullfighting was more than mere sport. Here he describes and explains the technical aspects of this dangerous ritual, and "the emotional and spiritual intensity and pure classic beauty that can be produced by a man, an animal, and a piece of scarlet serge draped on a stick." Seen through his eyes, bullfighting becomes an art, a richly choreographed ballet, with performers who range from awkward amateurs to masters of great grace and cunning.
©1932 Charles Scribner's Sons. Copyright Renewed ©1960 Ernest Hemingway. All rights reserved; (P)2007 Simon and Schuster Inc. All rights reserved.
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Customer Reviews

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By Kevin B. Keenan on 02-02-15

Death In The Afternoon

Still a great narrative on the bull fight...but of course...dated--but that is always good because it gives a micro glimpse of Spain in the twenties & thirties...sheer enjoyment....KBK

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful


By Gary on 01-07-13

No previous interest in bullfighting required

No fan of bullfighting here. If anything I came into this with a negative opinion. I choose this book, because I felt Hemingway would do something great with it and he doesn't disappoint. Boyd Gaines delivers a fantastic read, with perfect Spanish pronunciations. It doesn't change my opinion on bullfighting much, but maybe a little on life and death.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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By Charly on 06-25-11

Unmissable if you have an interest in the subject

I have always loved this book (I have four separate editions of it). If you are interested in the subject it is an essential read, if you are not it will probably bore you. If this book were written about any era it would still be wonderful, but the atmosphere of the 30's makes it even better.

If you enjoy it I would recommend buying the book (as old an edition as possible) for the wonderful photographs that breath life into the main protagonists.

The only downside for me (as is the case so often) is the narrator.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful


By hans on 02-28-17

I am an expert on bullfighting

Before having read this book, i mistakenly thought it dealt with themes of suicide. this disapointed me. hemingway is relentless in this book. he is very precise and detailed in his description of the sport. A bullfight is a tragedy. you learn so much about fear and the complexity of bullfighting. i have never seen a bullfight and i believe that all forms of cruelty against animals is wrong. however, after having read this book i find myself very curious to witness this sport to better undertstand this book. this book is relentless. you walk away having taken a great deal of knowledge on the sport. i have not detered from my belief that this sport is babaric but i also feel that i cannot judge this sport before witnessing this first hand. only then will i have an honest opinion on the matter.

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