Parents' Guide to

The Old Man and the Sea

By Mary Eisenhart, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Man vs. marlin story a challenging, introspective read.

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A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 9+

age 14+

Old man and the sea

The Old Man and the Sea is an elegant work by a legendary author. The reader follows the fishing trip of Santiago, an old man who hasn't caught a fish in many months. There is no need to be a fan of fishing to like this book. Hemingway is such a great writer than any reader can easily be "reeled in" by this book. Hemingway is very methodical in his word choice and even though the book isn't very wordy, it is still brilliant. The book deals with the ideas of man v. man, man v. environment, and man v. enemy throughout. The reader is taught lessons of patience and determination as Santiago goes after the biggest fish of his life. It is a very quick read and I highly recommend it to anyone. If you are not sold already then realize that this book was the main component in Hemingway winning the Nobel Prize in literature and it also won the pulitzer prize. Santiago's thrilling journey will leave you in awe and inspired by the end.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (6 ):

Not everyone, especially among the young, is prepared to engage with a plot that's largely waiting and introspection, punctuated by description and reminiscence, however beautifully written. Generations of critics and readers have showered this book with praise; generations of other readers, particularly those required to read it in school, have blasted it as the worst book they ever read, when they admit to getting through it at all, despite its brevity. Whether the particular class for which your kid is reading the book intends to focus on Hemingway, symbolism, heroic struggle, marine life, pre-Castro Cuba, or baseball in the Eisenhower era, it might be helpful to get a few bearings before sending him or her out on the high seas in this book.

Book Details

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