copyright 1986 "Second Printing May 1986" stated on copyright page; Charles Scribner's Sons publishers, New York; hardbound; very good condition with unmarked pages; white cloth spine, beige boards, with Ernest Hemingway embossed on front cover; dust jacket good with minor edge wear.
The Garden of Eden is the second posthumously released novel of Ernest Hemingway, published in 1986. Hemingway started the novel in 1946 and worked on the manuscript for the next 15 years, during which time he also wrote The Old Man and the Sea, The Dangerous Summer, A Moveable Feast, and Islands in the Stream.
The novel is fundamentally the story of five months in the lives of David Bourne, an American writer, and his wife Catherine. It is set mainly in the French Riviera, specifically in the Côte d'Azur, and in Spain. The story begins with their honeymoon in the Camargue, then moves to Spain, then back to France (at a "long low rose-colored Provençal house where they had stayed before... in the pines on the Estérel side of la Napoule" (within easy driving distance to Cannes). However, early in the book, Catherine seemed to change (from David's point of view -- the novel is entirely from his vantage). While at le Grau du Roi, Catherine announces "I have a big surprise", but does not tell David what it is other than to hint "Oh it's very simple but it's very complicated" and "...I'm going to be changed." She bicycles into town, then returns with "Her hair... cropped as short as a boy's." Later, that night, she tells him "Don't call me girl." and "Please love me David the way I am." and implies that he is changing also ("You are changing," she said. "Oh you are. You are. Yes you are and you're my girl Catherine.")
While in Spain, Catherine twice acts jealous about David reading clippings of reviews of his latest book -- rudely saying "you clipping reader" the second time -- and they have a mild spat. (He: "Why don't you just shut up about the clippings." She: "Why should I shut up? Just because you wrote this morning? Do you think I married you because you're a writer? You and your clippings.")
After their return to France, the Bournes soon meet a young woman named Marita, with whom they both fall in love. Catherine seemingly continues to explore gender roles, while David gets increasingly uncomfortable. Both Catherine and David sleep with Marita...