A Farewell to arms is the third novel written by Ernest Hemingway which dates back to 1929. Hemingway, well-known for his famous writings such as for whom the bell tolls, a moveable feast, the old man and the sea, is also a nobel prize laureate in literature.
The novel depicts the twentieth years of Frederic Henry during the First World War. Frederic is a young American who volunteers to work for Italian ambulances. One of his comrade (friend during this war), Rinaldi, introduces him to a young British woman, Catherine Berkley. He starts to seduce her, and gradually falls in love with her. After he gets hurt at the front, he is sent to an hospital where Catherine is also assigned. Here, their relationship begins and they both fall in love with each other. Afterwards, he tells their life where they try to survive with Catherine’s pregnancy and their urge to escape from this war. They will try to reach Switzerland where, they think, they can be free and happy… I think it is also worth noting that the tittle has a double meaning. First, there is the question of the war, then arms can also imply Catherine’s arms, that he will have to leave… This book is quite a moving one: during the war, love is not an easy thing.
A farewell to arms can be considered as an autobiographical novel. Indeed, Frederic’s characters is quite similar to Hemingway. Like him, Hemingway was also volunteer for the Italian Red Cross, he also gets hurt and also met a British nurse during his convalescence.