Good news for Ernest Hemingway fans: Next week, you can read A Farewell to Arms with its 47 alternate endings. The author said, in 1958, that he rewrote the final words of his classic "39 times before I was satisfied," and those endings were preserved at the JFK Presidential Library's Ernest Hemingway Collection in Boston. But grandson Seán Hemingway studied them and found 47 variations, which were gathered into an appendix in their entirety for the new edition, and will be published together for the first time.
The new edition of the wartime novel will also include early drafts of other parts of the book, handwritten passages, a list of alternate titles, and the original cover art. The New York Times has a tantalizing sample of the alternate endings and titles, like this one: "There is no end except death and birth is the only beginning." But, says a publisher at Scribner, Hemingway's longtime publisher, "Ultimately, I think we have to be glad that he went with the ending that he went with."