The Big Read Blog (Archive)

David Ives

Billie Holiday in Down Beat magazine, 1947. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons It's autumn in New York, and Newland Archer is about to marry May Welland. [Okay, he's about to marry her in a fictitious novel set some 140 years ago. Details.] May is the woman Archer is supposed to marry according to...
Photo used courtesy of Sookietex. Ernest Hemingway's 1929 novel A Farewell to Arms is set in Italy and Switzerland during World War One---a war in which Hemingway himself participated as an ambulance driver. World War One was one of the turning points in modern history. It destroyed the myth of...
Washington, DC Edith Wharton, courtesy of Yale Collection of American Literature, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscripts Library. Edith Wharton writes like a librettist composes operas, or like a sculptor builds structures. Today, we take a look at (and a listen to) the lasting effect of Wharton's...
Washington, DC Public domain image of Ernest Hemingway in an American Red Cross Ambulance in Italy, 1918. Hemingway's experience in Italy during WWI provided him the material for his 1929 classic, A Farewell to Arms . After WWI, he worked in Paris as a foreign correspondent for the Toronto Star ...
Washington, DC Book cover courtesy of Modern Library, a division of Random House, Inc., New York. As playwright David Ives notes on The Age of Innocence audio guide , ?sitting down with this novel is like sitting down next to the most wonderful dinner guest who knows all of the guests at the party...