Saturday, April 7, 2012

G is for Gatsby

There are a lot of books, essays and plays that talk about or discuss The Great Gatsby, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

There's a reason for that: it's a great book.

I think I studied this book in one of my lit classes, but that part is a bit fuzzy now. I've been out of college for well over a decade, so I don't know if it was an undergraduate or graduate class. Or both. Either way, the book stayed with me. I loved it. I read it almost every year. And I'm going to tell you why I love it so much.


1. There is a little bit of Jay Gatsby in all of us. Enough said. We can relate. We may not have his kind of money, but we all feel the need to be loved and appreciated.
2. There is a little bit Nick Carraway in all of us. We can really relate to Nick. He is us. The average joe. In awe of Jay, and his wealth.
3. There is a little bit of Daisy Buchanan in all of us. Again, we can relate. She is mixed up; loves her husband and is frustrated by him. Is drawn in by money and glamor, but is truly none of that. A fake.
4. America can relate to this little book BIG time right now. We are coming off our sugar high of money, and materialism and have crashed into bankruptcy and the re-evaluation of true priorities. Just like we did in the 1920s.
5. I love the way Fitzgerald writes. Simple, funny--perfect.

If you haven't read this little gem, you must. The description of the book says it's an "exquisitely crafted tale of America in the 1920s." But, a mere one hundred years or so later, it sounds like today. Check it out here.

Read it in the perspective of the roaring twenties and read it from the eyes of someone from today. It's parallel-- it's a sad and realistic story. And I think we can learn lessons from it. Remember, we learn from our past. That's the only way to move forward.

Some people think this book is overrated. I don't. A new version of it in movie form will be out this year with Leonardo DiCaprio. I think that might not be the best idea. Hence, making it overated. But, oh well. I'll probably watch it anyway. And you should too, Oldsport!

-H

10 comments:

  1. I read Gatsby a long time ago, and I remember liking it a lot, but I don't remember the plot or the characters. I'm a great believer in reading good books more than once. Thanks for the suggestion.

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  2. An absolutely amazing book! I started it at three different times in my life, and had trouble getting through the beginning. This past year I picked it up again and finished it in a day and a half. It's an amazing character study; so tragic, but as you said, so relateable.

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  3. i loved this book and saw the first movie in theatres many years ago--loved mia farrow in it--to me it was one of the few movies that held true to the book!

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  4. I think I read this book too young. The characters annoyed me. All of them. Seriously. I think they'd still annoy me (I have a low tolerance for people who crave material things), but i think I'd be better able to look at the subtext now. But I think I REALLY would have enjoyed it best with a discussion and the insight of a professor.

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  5. I read this book in high school and I had a hard time liking any of the characters, but I think they are written so you don't want to like them. But the story is a great story.

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  6. Wow. I'm glad others like the story too. And Krista, try reading it again.
    Your perspective on the characters may have change as you grow up. I was the same way!

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  7. Read in my junior year in high school. It was pretty good, I thought. Then I taught it to a bunch of high schoolers - and I gained a new appreciation for the book.

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  8. I love this book.

    You are very right in saying that there is a little bit of every character in us, but for me it is definitely Gatsby.

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  9. I love Gatsby. I'm nervous about the new movie interpretation coming out, though.
    Visitng from A to Z http://andisbookreviews.blogspot.com

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