A young Irish woman, Valerie Dabney-Smith met Ernest Hemingway in Spain in 1959. The writer took an immediate liking to her and offered her a job as a kind of private secretary. She accompanied him and his wife, Mary as they toured the Spanish bull rings getting material for a magazine article. When the Hemingways were to return to the United States, she was asked to meet them in Cuba and continue working with him. Her memoir details what life with the writer was like, his love of gift giving, his animosities with his sons and ex-wives, his love of Cuba and the Cuban people. After the writer's suicide she was asked to catalogue many of the writer's private papers.
Later she married his youngest son Greg who had serious mental problems. They were eventually divorced. She also discusses her relationship with Irish playwright Brenden Behan with who she had a child before her marriage.
The review of this Book prepared by Jack Goodstein