Welcome! Log in or Register

The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald

  • image
£17.00 Best Offer by: amazon.co.uk marketplace See more offers
29 Reviews

Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald / Genre: Classic Literature

  • Sort by:

    * Prices may differ from that shown

    More Offers
  • Write a review >
    How do you rate the product overall? Rate it out of five by clicking on one of the hearts.
    What are the advantages and disadvantages? Use up to 10 bullet points.
    Write your reviews in your own words. 250 to 500 words
    Number of words:
    Write a concise and readable conclusion. The conclusion is also the title of the review.
    Number of words:
    Write your email adress here Write your email adress

    Your dooyooMiles Miles

    29 Reviews
    Sort by:
    • More +
      10.07.2013 08:44

      Advantages

      Disadvantages

      A good read if you want something a bit meatier than a standard love story

      I'll admit I only read this after seeing the film - it's a book I hadn't considered before. The book is a fairly sprightly read at 9 chapters. The book sets you into the world of American high society of the 1920's with lavish parties and a time of excess. Jay Gatsby is something of a recluse holding extravagent parties but barely seen by the guests. Holding a candle for Daisy Buchanan, his lost love, he hopes one day she will arrive at one of his parties. Through a number of social relationships one day she does, with her husband. That's where the story begins as Daisy and Jay rediscover their love and the world slowly unravels around them. Fitzgerald's writing is warm and engaging and highly descriptive of the social excess seen. The character descriptions are strong and draw you in. Sympathy passes in the book with the reader firmly in Gatsby's court by the end. An easy to read novel that is very much a story of how far one man's love can go.

      Comments

      Login or register to add comments
    • More +
      05.01.2012 17:48
      Very helpful
      (Rating)
      1 Comment

      Advantages

      Disadvantages

      I have given this 3 stars as it does not really live up to the hype I had heard about it.

      The Great Gatsby was first published in 1925 and was the first of F Scott Fitzgerald's books that I read. It is set after the First World War and while this is a time that I know a lot about from a British point of view, I don't know a great deal about the United States after the war. Having read the book I have to admit that I still don't;

      It seems that in some ways the Americans were doing better than the British financially after the war and the story is considered to be worthy of including in a selection of books referred to as the Great American Novel. This was a book that Fitzgerald put a lot of time and effort into and he believed that he would reap the rewards of the time it was taking him to write. He also discounted numerous titles before deciding on the eventual one.

      The story centres round a Yale graduate and WW1 veteran called Nick Carraway. He likes the idea of having a change of career and so moves to New York to get involved in banking. He becomes friends with his neighbours Daisy and Tom, and begins dating a friend of theirs Jordan.

      He is eventually introduced to Gatsby and attends a party at his house. There are strangers everywhere and Gatsby is aloof and watches what happens but does not join in. Nick is asked to reintroduce Gatsby to Daisy as they were once a couple and although she it appears has moved on, he has not.

      It is well written but I think that it tends to be very contrived and there are events that happen that I cannot imagine happening in real life. I don't find that any of the characters are particularly likeable although Nick does not really do anything that would turn anyone against him.

      Although a lot seems to happen and relationships change, there is not much of a story other than the life of a few spoilt and wealthy people. Despite being acclaimed by many people I was not surprised to read that it did not sell out any of its publications and many who read it will have been army personnel who were given free copies after Fitzgerald death.

      I can't tell if there is meant to be a moral to the book and whether we are meant to learn anything from the actions of the characters, but I did not get anything from it at all. It trundles along and then ends. I certainly do not find it to be anywhere near as good as others by F Scott Fitzgerald,

      Comments

      Login or register to add comments
      • More +
        15.08.2011 22:09
        Very helpful
        (Rating)
        4 Comments

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        A classic worth reading beyond studies.

        'The Great Gatsby' is a novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Written in the middle of the Roaring Twenties in America, the work is like a social commentary on the hedonistic society Fitzgerald indulged in, with few morals and values in the country after the First World War. Ultimately the book wasn't commercially successful until long after Fitzgerald's death in 1941, which is too bad since now it is one of the most frequently studied books for English Literature in the US.

        I studied 'The Great Gatsby' myself two years ago during sixth form, but I enjoyed actually reading the book for pleasure, not just study. Sure, maybe part of that might come from the excellent teacher I had for the book (as opposed to my other English teacher who had to contend with Philip Larkin instead!) but the novel is one that, provided you have some understanding of the context, many can understand and enjoy.

        The main character and narrator is Nick Carraway, a young man who decides to move from America's Midwest to Long Island in the East for better job prospects and to be closer to his cousin and her husband- Daisy and Tom Buchanan. Settling in a suburb called 'East Egg', his new house turns out to neighbour one Jay Gatsby, a mysterious man who holds lavish parties many nights for the residents in the area. As Nick adapts to the high lifestyles shared by his friends and acquaintances, he one day meets Gatsby face to face who wants his help in his great aim- to have Daisy, whom he dated before going off to war- for himself.

        The story is essentially a romantic tragedy. After all, this is set in a period where material goods and living the high life at parties seems to hold more importance than family, friends and even love. As a result many of the characters come across as unlikeable, particularly the Buchanans- Tom is a intimidating, physically abusive man who is cheating on his wife, while Daisy is a naive, neglectful (sometimes you forget she is a mother) ditz who doesn't understand the gravitas of Gatsby's dedication towards her. Even Nick and Gatsby are seriously flawed with the former having admiration for the latter, despite him being a crook, a liar and quite pretentious in his speech. However, this is clearly because of Fitzgerald's strong (and unreliable) narrative and characterization with these people being caricatures of attitudes in the 20s. The fact that Nick isn't so above it all, what with his "relationship" with Daisy's friend Jordan, means that we as readers are just as easily drawn into the wonders of Twenties America as we are repulsed by it. Jay Gatsby is a character who we can be endeared to and shake your fist at. By the end of the novel which I obviously won't spoil, I was left thinking, "Whose fault is it?"

        As much as I liked the actual story and characterization I think the pacing is quite rushed chapter-to-chapter. In the first four chapters it feels like Nick is jumping to random places with little explanation. For example, at chapter one's end we go from Nick seeing Gatsby from outside his house to Nick travelling with Tom to meet his mistress; this is quite a jarring move seeing as there is a change in setting (rich area to poor area) and we're unsure why Nick is now travelling. The main action doesn't happen until past the halfway point, as there is a lot of building up with minor characters and the enigma of Gatsby's himself.

        Yet does the book hold up to a British reader in 2011? For the most part it does. The novel does imply some ideas which it assumes the contemporary audience knows like prohibition of alcohol. Furthermore, some of the characters' actions and motivations may also seem a bit moronic. For example, Daisy and Nick's flirting attitudes towards one another despite being cousins (intentional on Nick's part as to not appear to be gay despite being a single 30-something) and Tom's rant on a book he's read claiming how certain races are more intelligent than others. The core story itself is one about class, love and generally greed which still holds relevance even in British society today- think of celebrities and Hollywood lifestyles. In my opinion, 'The Great Gatsby' isn't without flaws but is definitely recommended for a look into a fascinating period of 20th Century America.

        Comments

        Login or register to add comments
        • More +
          22.07.2011 22:09
          Very helpful
          (Rating)
          1 Comment

          Advantages

          Disadvantages

          makes you think

          The nature of the word "ending" is definitely fluid and it thus will only be vaguely defined for the purpose of this title, as the major events that occur towards the end of the novel. Fitzgerald ends his book with murder, jealousy and loss. Consequently there are going to be moving aspects, however the distant and aloof nature of many of the characters strips them of our sympathy. Carraway tries desperately to finally form his opinions towards the end of book in order to give himself, and us, closure. Generally we are appropriately satisfied with his ending.
          The fact that Gatsby is murdered almost by mistake, as Wilson had been misled, is ignominious for a man of such colossal pretence, yet it is perhaps appropriate that he now becomes a tragic hero. It is also appropriate that Gatsby's death was mysterious. For he lived with almost celebrity status and, due to the mystery, the media furthers this status after his death. The "endless drill of... photographers and newspaper men" gives evidence to back the "Great" before "Gatsby" in the title. The Great Gatsby's house even becomes a tourist attraction at the end of the novel. We are told of the taxi driver "stopping for a minute and pointing inside" every time he "took a fare past the entrance gate". This shows Gatsby's magnetism lasting, even long after his sudden, dramatic and poignant death. This is moving and reminds us of his wasted potential.
          Carraway's musings on Gatsby's final moments are infinitely poignant. Apparently Gatsby "must have looked up at an unfamiliar sky through frightening leaves and shivered as he found what a grotesque thing a rose is". Assuming that Gatsby did have this moment of epiphany, he would have realised that his life's work, or at least the last five years of it, was essentially pointless and irrelevant. This is because Daisy, the "rose", was not the idealistic, platonic Goddess he had imagined, but instead a "grotesque thing". Before his death, according to Nick, Gatsby suddenly saw the sharp juxtaposition between his ideal deification of Daisy and the material reality of her. Moreover Gatsby has realised that his general tendency, in all areas of life, to dream is ridiculous and naïve. Thus he is now unable to cope in this "new, material world".
          Daisy ends up with Tom. This is both appropriate, as it displays the victory of old money over new money, and moving, because it implies Gatsby's tragic failure. It leaves Gatsby pathetic, still yearning, and "clutching at some last hope". This leaves the reader feeling utter pity towards a once glorious character. Yet Gatsby is merely a pretender, of "old money", and thus it is appropriate in this class-obsessed society, which Fitzgerald has synthesised, that Tom's "new money" is victorious. However the traditionalist could argue that it is unsatisfying and thus inappropriate that our protagonist, Gatsby is left frustrated.
          Gatsby's funeral is incredibly poignant; very few attend, showing Gatsby to be easily expendable to the world. Nick finds himself "on Gatsby's side, and alone". Despite innumerable mesmerising parties Gatsby is left without friends. Even Gatsby's "Rolls-Royce became an omnibus" to his parties. This shows how much social effort Gatsby put in, in return for nothing. We are shocked as Nick attempts, in vain, to gather a respectable guest list for the funeral. One supposed friend is tremendously more concerned with the return of his "tennis shoes". This empty funeral is appropriate and emblematic of the shallow society. Equally sad is that Nick is the one left to arrange the funeral in the first place. Their relationship lasted merely a few months and Nick describes Gatsby as the man "who represented everything for which I have an unaffected scorn." It is revealingly harrowing that the deepest connection Gatsby has forged during his life is this one.
          James Gatsby's once revered mansion, symbolising his material and social success, rapidly begins to show signs of decay. Nick describes it as a "huge incoherent failure of a house" because it did not achieve its objective; Daisy and because of its tacky, vulgar appearance. On the white of Gatsby's steps "an obscene word" is "scrawled by some boy". Metaphorically this implies that Gatsby's façade of class and purity has been corrupted and revealed to be false. This is, indubitably, poignant. It is also appropriate as it shows the shallowness of Gatsby's class. Quickly Gatsby's grass "had grown as long as" Nick's. Symbolically the grass represents the social class of the two men.
          On page 168, Nick describes his break up with Jordan as "an awkward, unpleasant thing". This implies his cold nature and it appropriately fits with his generally misogynistic viewpoint throughout the book, that his only qualm with breaking up is slight social awkwardness. He then directly compares Jordan to his "refuse". Fitzgerald conveys Nick's utterly cold character by making him describe his past lover as a repulsive and inanimate object. We are not moved by Nick's distasteful description of Jordan being nothing more than a "good illustration". Nick does not understand women and thus only describes her as an aesthetic object, describing her hair as "the colour of an autumn leaf". We expect some assessment of her thoughts and feelings, but Nick the misogynist does not explicitly describe such things. Nick is clearly looking for some kind of closure and thus rejecting Jordan, who personifies the weak morals of the east, is appropriate for him personally, but not necessarily for the reader.
          Nick's return to the east is inevitable and definitely an appropriate way for him to gain closure. He talks nostalgically of "the real snow, our snow". He sees the Midwest as wholesome and comfortable in comparison to the exciting, yet morally questionable, east. Here Nick almost searches too hard for closure, a conclusion. He perceives some "common" "deficiency" that he, "Tom and Gatsby, Daisy and Jordan" share because they were westerners living in the east. This seems to be a ridiculous notion created by Nick to justify their respective weaknesses and to lift from them any responsibility. Thus, I am not moved.
          At the end of the novel, there is an open confrontation between Nick and Tom. This is definitely satisfying as it provides an outlet for tensions that have been building throughout the book. Nick's monosyllabic, simple judgement of "You know what I think of you" is not particularly moving, but definitely seems appropriate as the reader certainly holds an innate desire for the unethical to be judged. Nick provides this. It is not surprising to find Tom Buchanan at the "Jewellery store" presumably purchasing the obligatory material possessions required to initiate another mistress. This seems to be the start of a new cycle of emotional trauma, yet the reader almost finds closure in the story, by seeing the shoots of a new one coming through. This, however, does not move us, as it is an obvious development in the marriage between two, obviously amoral, spouses.
          Nick's realisation that Gatsby's dreams were essential and yet intangible was appropriate as a bleak metaphor for the realities of life; the dreamer is left tragically disheartened. Simultaneously it was moving because a life with obsessions that are both necessary and ephemeral is essentially insatiable. As Nick observes Gatsby "did not know that it was already behind him". We are utterly moved by the infinite trauma that Gatsby inevitably feels and are satisfied that our, not always very perceptive, narrator realises.
          The ending of The Great Gatsby is not wholly satisfying due to Carraway's definite lack of understanding. The whole book is "distorted beyond" Nick's "eyes' power of correction." We gain no other perspective and thus are left wondering that even "After two years" Nick does not fully understand the complexities of each character. Though, this does not prevent the ending from being appropriate, as one of Fitzgerald's aims in the book was to make us question the role of the narrator. Obviously with such drama and conflict, caused by extreme love and hate, some degree of poignancy is inevitable. However the inherently cold nature of many of the characters in the Great Gatsby detracts from our sympathy. Thus, appropriately, our protagonist and dreamer; Gatsby, becomes the chief object of our lamentation.

          Comments

          Login or register to add comments
          • More +
            13.03.2011 16:33
            2 Comments

            Advantages

            Disadvantages

            Great Novel.

            In the Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald captures the age of excess and the failure of the American dream in post war America. The book is written in a format that means that you do have to concentrate to get the best out of the novel, and it is an excellent novel to study, but as I have read it more and more I have enjoyed it more and more. The book captures so many different feelings and the fact that it is a cross genre book, a tragedy, love story, American novel and to a great extent a political novel means that everyone finds something different in it. The characters and settings work effectively in tandem to portray a picture that goes far beyond the confounds of the novel, and highlight issues with society, both contemporary and modern day, with the obsession with money and class divides.

            It is not an easy read but it is most definitely worth it.

            Comments

            Login or register to add comments
            • More +
              06.03.2010 16:09
              Very helpful
              (Rating)
              1 Comment

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              A great book consiedrd to be one of the best on American 1920's

              Written in 1926 by F. Scott Fitzgerald, the great gatsby follows narrator nick as he discovers the way the upper classes lived in the 1920s prior to the great depression in 1929. The story starts in 1922 with nick who has just moved into west egg, new york to learn the bond trade. His neighbour who he becomes good friends with the mysterious gatsby who every Saturday throws massive partys at his mansion.

              As events progress, fitzgerald presents a damning picture of both the American dream and the upper classes forever making you think about how the richest people in this world used to live.

              The book itself is only 190 pages providing a very enjoyable read for two weeks, one week as a simple read through and the second to understand all the complex meanings and messages fitzgerald constantly presents.

              His narrative style provides an excellent and engaging story throughout. The characters themselves are all fascinating in their own style as they all, like a jigsaw, pull together to emit the destination of the story.

              Overall, this story is an engaging romantic novel which contends, in my opinion, with lord of the flies as one of the best books ever written.

              Comments

              Login or register to add comments
              • More +
                19.02.2010 13:08
                Very helpful
                (Rating)
                2 Comments

                Advantages

                Disadvantages

                Worth a read if you enjoy fast paced novels.

                I've read this twice, the first time, I hated it. The second time, I loved it. The first time I was forced to read it, and thus disliked it, however when I later read it because I wanted to read it, I enjoyed it.

                The novel is about the Jazz age, prohibition, money, cars and the "careless people", to use a quote from the narrator, who live in this world. This novel is set during the 1920's when America was at the height of her riches before the wall street crash, and this can be seen through the characters lack of care for money or anything in general. The characters are very well written and you have a character for several different view points. You have the racist thug, the gangster, the women who is in love with 2 men. All these characters blend together into a wonderful novel about America at that time.

                The narrator, Nick, however seems to have distorted view on things, and this improves the novel wonderfully, as the reader must read his words, interpret them and they may come to a different conclusion than the narrator about each character. For example Nick thinks the gangster is great, hence the title "The Great Gatsby", yet to many it would seem he is not great. This interesting view on things improves the readability no end, and made the novel much more enjoyable for me.

                Comments

                Login or register to add comments
                • More +
                  23.10.2009 17:41
                  Very helpful
                  (Rating)
                  2 Comments

                  Advantages

                  Disadvantages

                  Up there with my favourite books of all time!

                  Still his most celebrated work, The Great Gatsby is the novel that first propelled F. Scott Fitzgerald to literary fame.

                  Synopsis

                  Set in 1920's New York, the novel centres on the illusive and intriguing character of Jay Gatsby. Seen through the eyes of Nick Carraway, the texts narrator, Gatsby initially embodies the lavish excitement of Jazz Age America. As the novel progresses, Fitzgerald explores the disintegration and dissolution of the American Dream, through the plight of Gatsby.

                  Pining for the love of his teenage sweetheart, Daisy Buchanan, Gatsby dedicates every aspect of his life to winning her back. The zeal with which he throws himself into this task is both impressive and repulsive and drives the narrative forward with a sense of earnest desperation.

                  Set in the towns of East and West Egg, Fitzgerald's motley cast of characters feed off of Gatsby, taking what they can get from him without giving anything back. This stinging indictment of American society goes to the very heart of this Modernist classic.

                  The Great Gatsby is a novel of contrast. The immaculate and seductive exterior which Gatsby presents to society contrast sharply with the lonely isolation of his inner world. So to Fitzgerald's sardonic tone contrasts with the beauty and fluidity of his prose.


                  My Opinion

                  This book has seen me through my A Level's, Undergraduate and Postgraduate degrees in English Literature, and I absolutely love it. I recommend it wholeheartedly to everyone, regardless of whether you are interested in Modernist Literature or not.
                  It is a novel that improves with every read, each time revealing something new to the reader. Gatsby's struggle is as relevant today as it was when it was written. The novel retains a vibrant and spellbinding quality, which draws the reader into a world of rampant consumerism, unrequited love and failed idealism.




                  Other Novels by F Scott Fitzgerald

                  This Side of Paradise (1920)
                  The Beautiful and the Damned (1922)
                  Tender is the Night (1934)
                  The Last Tycoon (unfinished) (1942)


                  Fitzgerald worked extensively as a short story writer during his lifetime. Below are a selection of these works.
                  The Ice Palace (1920)
                  The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (1921)
                  The Diamond as Big as the Ritz (1922)
                  Babylon Revisited (1931)

                  Comments

                  Login or register to add comments
                  • More +
                    03.10.2009 09:23
                    Very helpful
                    (Rating)
                    1 Comment

                    Advantages

                    Disadvantages

                    An insight into the failings of the American dream and the pursuit of happiness.

                    I had to read this book for A Level English Literature, and as a result my feeling about it are mixed. I did not enjoy the read but I can appreciate the way it is written.
                    The Great Gatsby was written by F. Scott Fitzgerald and published in 1925. The date is significant because the book mirrors the events going on in post World War I America. Fitzgerald himself joined up in 1917.
                    Fitzgerald drew on many aspects of him own life in order to write this book.
                    Like the character Jay Gatsby, Fitzgerald had to earn wealth and success before he could persue the woman with whom he was in love with. The character Nick Carraway grew up in Minnesota, Fitzgerald's childhhod home.

                    The Great Gatsby is considered Fitzgerald's best novel. It is set in post war America and its so called 'jazz age'. This period of extravagence was as a direct result of the violence and horror of the war. Certain parts of American society turned to shopping, drink and other excesses in order to cope.
                    One of the main characters is Nick Carraway, who moves from his home town of Minnesota to West Egg, Lond Island in order to learn about business. His neighbour is Jay Gatsby, a man who lives in a big house and throws wonderful parties every Saturday night. Eventually Nick gets invited to one of these parties, were he meets Jordan Baker (with whom he later has a brief relationship) and Gatsby himself. Nick learns that Gatsby is pursuing Daisy Buchanan (a now married woman from Gatsby's past).
                    The novel centres on the pursuit of the American dream and the supposed happiness it contains. Fitzgerald shows us how money and the pursuit of wealth leads to wanton abandon, adultery, dishonesty and corruption. Fitzgerald shows us this through description and characterisation.

                    Comments

                    Login or register to add comments
                    • More +
                      09.08.2009 18:33
                      1 Comment

                      Advantages

                      Disadvantages

                      A novel that describes not only an age but the failings of a dream

                      Such a well written concise novel with a poignant message is certainly not a commodity and as a consequence it is understandable that 'The Great Gatsby' is frequently referred to in best of book lists. Set in New York's decadent 1920's during the pinnacle of the jazz age, there was no better writer than F. Scott Fitzgerald to make a social commentary on all that was wrong with the materialism that surrounded him and in which he himself indulged in.

                      The novel is told through the eyes of Nick Carraway who is something of a moral benchmark. He arrives with a naivety that the reader can identify with and makes his journey in the novel something that the reader can relate to and emphasise with. The build up to the meeting of Gatsby is ingeniously done as the character is shrouded in mystery. The subject of much gossip Fitzgerald allows the imagination to run wild as we create our own lucrative characteristics that shall define our protagonist. The protagonist's isolation is a source of the readers sympathy and ultimately it is this sympathy with James Gatsby coupled with the tragic ending that allow the reader to understand Fitzgerald's disenchantment with the American dream.

                      Comments

                      Login or register to add comments
                      • More +
                        26.05.2009 19:00

                        Advantages

                        Disadvantages

                        The best modern novel you could ever hope to read.

                        The essential American novel. In a mere 200 pages or so, F Scott Fitzgerald summarises all the concerns of modernist American fiction, the destruction of the idealist American dream and all things beautiful are shown to be destroyed by the widening industrialisation of modern America.

                        A novel that acts as a moral compass, indicative of the 'lawlessness' of 'Jazz Age' America, the tale shows the divide between classes, the destruction of dreams and beauty and expresses all the concerns of modern American literature rather succinctly.

                        The novel is utterly fabulous with fantastic imagery and symbology richening the plot which in itself a thing of greatness. The Great Gatsby is essential reading for everyone and anyone, a definite must-read. Its' condemnation of modern society and the way in which all things beautiful and 'romantic' are destroyed, reflecting upon the prevalence of consumerism and lack of true goodness in the world, shown through the spiritual voids within the characters are messages that ring true today.

                        Comments

                        Login or register to add comments
                      • More +
                        24.05.2009 21:55
                        5 Comments

                        Advantages

                        Disadvantages

                        One of the best novels ever written and an excellent read!

                        "The Great Gatsby" is seen by many to be one of the best novels of the 20th century and it is easy to see why. The two main characters being Gatsby and Daisy are suppose to in some regards symbolise F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda. It is considered to be of F. Scott Fitzgerald's best and no wonder.

                        The novel is about a man named James Gatz who attempts to re-invent himself in order to repeat the past and end up marrying Daisy Buchanan. He is a big dreamer and always aspires to one day get her. It is a romantic story in many ways however, it is also tragic. Within the book there is a lot of detail over the contrast between the lifestyles of the rich (Buchanan's) and the poor (Wilson's). The symbolism used throughout the novel is exceptional and really is thought-provoking. I felt that it is well worth seeing the film as an accompanyment as it will help to develop your understanding of the novel. A lot of the novel is depicting the more modern perception of the American dream being the rag-to-riches approach.

                        This truly is a magnificent novel in every essence and I could not recommend it more. The novel in many ways is regarding the so called 'Jazz Age' and the prohibition era which has caused bootlegging. In many ways, Jay Gatsby is the man who has everything now despite comming from humble backgrounds. He has achieved the American dream but at what cost?

                        I loved this book so much that I even have a "Great Gatsby" poster in my study. It truly is an exceptional novel and one definately worth getting and keeping. I found it to be both intriguing and thought provoking on all levels. It is a relativlely short book being only 147 pages and will keep you well entertained throughout. I hope this was useful and thank you for reading.

                        Comments

                        Login or register to add comments
                        • More +
                          15.02.2009 14:02
                          Very helpful
                          (Rating)
                          1 Comment

                          Advantages

                          Disadvantages

                          Fantastic. I'll be reading it again and again!!

                          What can one write that gives this work of genius enough credit? It is a beautiful piece of literacy that has, and will, live on far longer than many of our life times. It is a joy to read, as are all of S.F. Fitzgerald's books.
                          It is a hook from word one, and opens your minds eye to a world of vintage fashion, when parties were elegant, and love was even more graceful and impulsive.
                          This is a tale of ambition, romance and loss. You'll be suspended in its poetry, held in the arms of each page unable to stop reading but without want of it.
                          Although this is a fairly long novel, depending on your reading experience; however it is well worth the journey. Whether it takes a day, week or a year for you to read!
                          A gorgeous use of language that captures a time past, and allows one to travel back and witness it over and over again with each read. I'm sure that it's needless to say that I cannot write enough about this breathtaking novel.

                          This book is a privilege to read.

                          Comments

                          Login or register to add comments
                          • More +
                            06.02.2009 15:09
                            2 Comments

                            Advantages

                            Disadvantages

                            Greek tragedy really

                            Timeless writing, lost like the quality of dream. The searching spirits, striving for what they may never, spiritually, attain in this world, where self-delusion motivates, social tendencies can seem shallow. Friendships; empathy amid the cold but natural human tendencies. Incorruptible dreams amid corruption. The quality of character questioned. Observant, non-participatory narration, depicts the beauty, the waste, the prejudices and insecurity, fragility; time passing.

                            It's indeed a deep book; many shades. Honest, romantic, beautiful, sorrowful. Emptiness found in the richest vistas. It has a resigned tone, but with affection for the failing of Gatsby, confronting the dream that has died, and is always dying. It's a Greek Tragedy really.

                            I can't get the actor Robert Redford out of my head for Gatsby, because he was just the perfect casting for this bygone age. If u like this classic, u'll like the slower Brideshead Revisited by Eveleyn Waugh, and Donna Tartt's more recent, student classic The Secret History.

                            Comments

                            Login or register to add comments
                            • More +
                              29.01.2008 01:06
                              Very helpful
                              (Rating)
                              5 Comments

                              Advantages

                              Disadvantages

                              More than just a love story.

                              The Great Gatsby is a novel by the American author F. Scott Fitzgerald. First published on April 10, 1925, the story is set in Long Island's North Shore, in the fictional regions of East and West Egg along with New York City during the summer of 1922.

                              The novel is introduced by first-person narrator Nick Carraway and the main character of Gatsby is not properly introduced until the 3rd chapter, which in a book of only 11 chapters is a very long time to wait. This wait to reveal the main character is a possible explanation of the title itself, The Great Gatsby, being a very mystical title for a character, very much like an early 20th Century Magician may have held when performing.

                              The novel itself is a recollection of the events that occurred in the summer of 1922, which Nick Carraway spent living in a small house in West Egg, the less fashionable of two fictional regions made up by Fitzgerald. Because the story is told in retrospect from Nick's character his judgement upon the events in the story is a major factor in what the reader is allowed to "see" by Fitzgerald, he passes strong opinions on other characters that affect the reader immediately, in chapter one Tom Buchannan is described as a "hulking man" and his "aggressive" manor is also noted.

                              Below is a small summary of the novel, in which I have tried to note the main points from each chapter;


                              ****SPOILERS FOR PLOT****
                              *
                              *
                              *
                              *
                              Chapter 1
                              Nick meets his second cousin Daisy, her husband Tom Buchannan - who live across the bay in East Egg - and Daisy's friend Jordan Baker who makes comments about a man named Gatsby who happens to live next door to Nick in a large mansion in West Egg. She also tells that Tom is cheating on Daisy with his "woman in the city."

                              Chapter 2
                              Tom takes Nick to meet Myrtle, his mistress, and they have a small party in her apartment that Tom has purchased her in the city, during the party Tom breaks Myrtle's nose for speaking about Daisy.

                              Chapter 3
                              Jay Gatsby is introduced to the reader for the first time at a party at his home. Nick notes how he seems to always have something on his mind. Nick also starts to ponder a relationship with Jordan Baker.

                              Chapter 4
                              Gatsby and Nick travel to the city for lunch, during which Nick attempts to find out a bit more about Gatsby's somewhat shady past. Upon reaching the city Nick is introduced to Meyer Wolfshiem, who Gatsby reveals fixed the 1919 World Series - showing some more of Gatsby's past. Tom arrives at the restaurant, but when Nick attempts to introduce the two Gatsby has left. A flashback of Jordan's now reveals her past in which Daisy was involved with a young man named Gatsby and they both had seemed very in love.

                              Chapter 5
                              An arrangement is made for Gatsby and Daisy to meet at Nick's small house. Gatsby makes arrangements to make Nick's house more presentable, even arranging for the grass to be cut before their meeting. Gatsby is extremely nervous and when he finally is convinced to go ahead with the meeting he speaks with Daisy and they recollect on the past. Gatsby then shows Daisy his large house and his possessions, including shirts from England, to which Daisy responds by crying and sobbing - "I've never seen such beautiful shirts."

                              Chapter 6
                              A Journalist appears at Nicks home and reveals more of Gatsby's past. Later in the chapter another party is staged at Gatsby's manor and Tom and Daisy attend, Daisy tells Gatsby how much she loves him.

                              Chapter 7
                              Gatsby and Nick visit the Buchannan's home and they group of people decide to go into New York. At a hotel Gatsby reveals his feelings for Daisy in front of Tom urging her to "tell him that you've never loved him" only for Daisy to be indecisive. The group decide to leave and on the way back to East Egg Myrtle Wilson is killed in a road accident involving the car that Gatsby and Daisy have been travelling in.

                              Chapter 8
                              Wilson, Myrtle's husband, hunts down the driver of the car and shoots and kills Gatsby, before committing suicide in the garden by shooting himself.

                              Chapter 9
                              The sad end to the novel in which Nick attempts to find people to attend Gatsby's funeral but no-one seems to want to, showing how people were happy to attend his events in life, but when dead, no-one seems to want to know him. Eventually getting hold of Gatsby's father, Nick finds out that Gatsby had been full of ambition from a young age and had gone to great lengths to achieve his goals - supremely Daisy. The novel ends with Nick contemplating how Gatsby chased his dream.
                              *
                              *
                              *
                              *
                              ****SPOILERS OVER****

                              On the surface, The Great Gatsby is a story of the thwarted love between a man and a woman. The main theme of the novel, however, encompasses a much larger, less romantic scope. Though all of its action takes place over a mere few months, The Great Gatsby is a highly symbolic meditation on 1920s America as a whole.
                              In the 1920's The American Dream was seemingly dying and The Great Gatsby explores this thoroughly, as Fitzgerald saw it (and as Nick explains in chapter 6), The American dream was originally about discovery, individualism, and the pursuit of happiness. In the 1920s depicted in the novel, however, easy money and relaxed social values have corrupted this dream, especially on the East Coast.
                              The main plot of the novel shows how Gatsby's dream of loving Daisy is essentially ruined by the initial different social class between the two, and unlike in most stories and 'happy novels' love prevails whatever, Gatsby is in this respect, unlike many other novels. Gatsby having to resort to crime and social climbing shows how the dream has essentially "gone wrong."
                              The symbolism of the Green light at the end of Daisy's dock that Gatsby continually looks out to from his mansion is reflected at the end of the novel when Nick comments of the Green breast of America in which Americans have given their dream the same kind of idealised perfection that Daisy neither has nor deserves.

                              Overall, A fantastic novel, with so much scope rather than just the initial seen plotline.

                              Thanks for reading and rating, please feel free to comment with pointers on how to make this better!

                              Comments

                              Login or register to add comments