The Importance of Being Ernest by Tim Black
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
An utterly delightful, surprising, synchronous, 1920-ish, satricial, beauty of a novella, “The Importance of Being Ernest” by Tim Black hinges on the missing valise of Ernest Hemingway manuscripts, lost on a train trip his first wife Hadley took, early in the 20th century. Not just Hadley’s valise is at stake (wouldn’t most in the literary world and academia move heaven and earth to find ANY unpublished Hemingway manuscripts?) but so does the academic tenure fate of one Professor James Joyce Jones-the man who identified Nick Adams’ mole. Desperate to find an as yet unknown manuscript-needed both to achieve tenure and to continue his foundation grant-Jones must follow the trail of a Sydney Greenstreet-style fellow, from Key West to Paris, from Harry’s New York Bar, to Montmarte, and beyond-to a very clever ending indeed.
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