Winter, 1922 Ernest Hemingway and Hadley Hemingway in Chamby, Switzerland, 1922. Photograph in the Ernest Hemingway Photograph Collection, John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.
I just finished reading The Paris Wife by Paula McLain, a fictionalized biography of Hadley Richardson that focuses on her time as Ernest Hemingway’s first wife. I’ve never read any of Hemingway’s work, and now I’m not sure that I ever can. He came across as such a selfish, arrogant jerk. I wanted to shake Hadley so many times, too. She just let her life happen to her, rather than actually doing anything to affect the course of events.
An alternate title for the book could have been The Wrong Way to Have an Open Marriage. I was completely disgusted by Ernest’s behaviour and his one-sided decision to have a lover, against his wife’s clearly expressed wishes. Hadley never seemed to talk to Ernest about anything, and he ignored her when she finally did.
It just makes me mad.