Love and Ruin (Hardcover)

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Boswell, Oconomowoc's Books & Company, and the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts presents a ticketed event with Paula McLain, author of The Paris Wife and her new novel Love and Ruin. Tickets are $32 and include the book. Visit to purchase. Please note that buying a book on this website is not a ticket for admission. You must visit the Brown Paper Tickets website. 

— Boswell Book Company

In her new novel, Paula McLain captures a period in time when the world fell apart again and again. Ernest Hemingway, the foremost writer of the day, and Martha Gellhorn, who forged a path for women in journalism, had an immediate connection. Together, it was one of the twentieth century’s most tempestuous relationships. Was she overwhelmed by his fame to become the doting wife of a man set in his ways? Was he overwhelmed by her efforts to build a successful career and not bow to his expectations? Clashing egos, Hemingway’s headline-grabbing betrayal, and Gellhorn’s ultimate success by reclaiming her identity (and her name) are all captured perfectly by McLain. Love and Ruin is the story of one woman who refused play the role of footnoted wife.

— Jane Glaser


NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - The bestselling author of The Paris Wife returns to the subject of Ernest Hemingway in a novel about his passionate, stormy marriage to Martha Gellhorn--a fiercely independent, ambitious young woman who would become one of the greatest war correspondents of the twentieth century.

In 1937, twenty-eight-year-old Martha Gellhorn travels alone to Madrid to report on the atrocities of the Spanish Civil War and becomes drawn to the stories of ordinary people caught in the devastating conflict. It's the adventure she's been looking for and her chance to prove herself a worthy journalist in a field dominated by men. But she also finds herself unexpectedly--and uncontrollably--falling in love with Hemingway, a man on his way to becoming a legend.

In the shadow of the impending Second World War, and set against the turbulent backdrops of Madrid and Cuba, Martha and Ernest's relationship and their professional careers ignite. But when Ernest publishes the biggest literary success of his career, For Whom the Bell Tolls, they are no longer equals, and Martha must make a choice: surrender to the confining demands of being a famous man's wife or risk losing Ernest by forging a path as her own woman and writer. It is a dilemma that could force her to break his heart, and hers.

Heralded by Ann Patchett as "the new star of historical fiction," Paula McLain brings Gellhorn's story richly to life and captures her as a heroine for the ages: a woman who will risk absolutely everything to find her own voice.

Praise for Love and Ruin

"In this heart-tugging follow-up to The Paris Wife], we meet Martha Gellhorn, a correspondent during the Spanish Civil War, who was the third--and perhaps most intriguing--of Hemingway's] wives. The title says it all."--People

"Propulsive . . . highly engaging . . . McLain does an excellent job portraying a woman with dreams who isn't afraid to make them real. . . . Her work around the world . . . is presented in meticulous, hair-raising passages. . . . The book is fueled by her questing spirit, which asks, Why must a woman decide between being a war correspondent and a wife in her husband's bed?"--The New York Times Book Review

" The] scenes of professional rivalry and seesawing imbalance are some of McLain's best. . . . McLain's legions of fans will relish the inspiration of a gutsy woman who discovers she doesn't need a man at her side, after all."--The Boston Globe

About the Author

Paula McLain is the New York Times bestselling author of the novels Circling the Sun, The Paris Wife, and A Ticket to Ride, the memoir Like Family: Growing Up in Other People's Houses, and two collections of poetry. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, Good Housekeeping, O: The Oprah Magazine, Town & Country, The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and elsewhere. She lives in Ohio with her family.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781101967386
ISBN-10: 1101967382
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publication Date: May 1st, 2018
Pages: 400
Language: English