The Old Man and the Sea Questions and Answers
by Ernest Hemingway

The Old Man and the Sea book cover
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What is an example of a book report on The Old Man and the Sea with plot summary, introduction/setting, and opinion/recommendation?

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The Old Man and the Sea is a novel written by Ernest Hemingway. It was first published in 1952. It is set in Cuba and deals with Santiago, the old man referred to in the title, and his quest to have success at fishing. Hemingway himself used to live in Cuba, which is why this novel has been heavily influenced by his own experience of living there.

Santiago is an old fisherman who refuses to give up his quest to catch a great catch. When he finally manages to catch a big marlin, he is unable to pull the fish onto his boat. Instead, the boat ends up being pulled by the fish for days. When the fish finally tires, Santiago manages to kill him. Unfortunately, this results in sharks being attracted; they attack Santiago and eat the marlin. The novel ends with Santiago returning home safely with the marlin carcass and falling into a deep sleep.

The main themes of the book are honor, struggle, and defeat. The marlin struggles and fights with Santiago, and when Santiago finally manages to kill the marlin, he feels admiration for the fish and his struggle to survive. The key message of the novel is therefore to never give up.

The Old Man and the Sea is considered to be a must-read by many. Particularly for people who would like to get to know Hemingway’s writing, this book would be the perfect start, perhaps to be followed by one of Hemingway’s short stories, such as “Cat in the Rain.”

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