This Nobel Prize winning novel describes the story of a battle between an old, experienced fisherman, Santiago, and a large marlin.
Santiago has gone 84 days without catching a fish, which is considered as the worst form of luck. Due to this situation, his young apprentice, Manolin, has been forbidden by his parents to sail with him and been told to fish with other, actually successful fishermen. Santiago, determined to brake his unlucky streak, ventured on the 85th day far out into the Gulf Stream, north of Cuba in the Straits of Florida to fish. Santiago took his old skiff, set his lines and, by noon, had his bait taken by a big fish that he was sure was a marlin. He was unable to pull in the marlin and was instead pulled by the fish further to the open sea. Two days and nights passed with Santiago holding the line, When Santiago expressed a compassionate appreciation for the marlin, often referring to him as a brother, determined that no one shall eat him. On the third day, the fish wore itself which allowed worn out Santiago to pull the fish onto its side and stab it with a harpoon. Santiago had secured the marlin to the side of the skiff and headed home thinking about the high price the fish would bring him at the market and how many people he will feed. On the return journey, sharks were attracted to the marlin's blood. Santiago killed one with his harpoon, but lost the weapon in the process. He made a new harpoon by strapping his knife to the end of an oar to help ward off the next line of sharks; five had been slain and many others driven away. But they kept coming, and by nightfall had almost devoured the entire carcass, leaving only a skeleton. Santiago finally reached the shore before dawn on the next day, struggled to his shack, and upon reaching his house he slumped onto the bed and fell into a deep sleep. A group of fishermen gathered around the skeleton still attached to the skiff. One of the fishermen measured it to be 18 feet from nose to tail which tourists mistakenly took for a shark. Manolin checked on Santiago and brought him some coffee and newspaper. When the old man had woken he promised Manolin to fish together once again.
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Ernest Hemingway – The Old Man and the Sea
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