Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Book Review: The Great Gatsby by F.Scott Fitzgerald

The Great Gatsby by F.Scott Fitzgerald
Release Date: 10th April 1925
Publisher: Scribner
Format: eBook
Pages: 144
Rating: 3.5/5.0

This book was read as part of the 2013 OTS, 2013 ODY, 2013 EBC and 2013 GVR

Summary from Goodreads:
buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery"A portrait of the Jazz Age in all of its decadence and excess, Gatsby captured the spirit of the author's generation and earned itself a permanent place in American mythology. Self-made, self-invented millionaire Jay Gatsby embodies some of Fitzgerald's--and his country's--most abiding obsessions: money, ambition, greed, and the promise of new beginnings. "Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter--tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther.... And one fine morning--" Gatsby's rise to glory and eventual fall from grace becomes a kind of cautionary tale about the American Dream.
It's also a love story, of sorts, the narrative of Gatsby's quixotic passion for Daisy Buchanan. The pair meet five years before the novel begins, when Daisy is a legendary young Louisville beauty and Gatsby an impoverished officer. They fall in love, but while Gatsby serves overseas, Daisy marries the brutal, bullying, but extremely rich Tom Buchanan. After the war, Gatsby devotes himself blindly to the pursuit of wealth by whatever means--and to the pursuit of Daisy, which amounts to the same thing. "Her voice is full of money," Gatsby says admiringly, in one of the novel's more famous descriptions. His millions made, Gatsby buys a mansion across Long Island Sound from Daisy's patrician East Egg address, throws lavish parties, and waits for her to appear. When she does, events unfold with all the tragic inevitability of a Greek drama, with detached, cynical neighbor Nick Carraway acting as chorus throughout. Spare, elegantly plotted, and written in crystalline prose, The Great Gatsby is as perfectly satisfying as the best kind of poem."

This took me longer than I thought it would to get through it. Probably because I didn't enjoy it all that much. Which I find strange, considering this novel is one of the great American classics. I really, really thought that I would like this book more. 

My problem was with the characters and the plot. The characters themselves, were not all that likeable. I hear that that's the point, but still - I tend to need characters I like, or maybe love to hate, in order to enjoy a book. These characters - I didn't love to hate them, I just disliked them. On top of that, I had some issues with the plot. Now, there were some twists and turns in there that I wasn't expecting - those parts of the novel I enjoyed. But that ending. I just didn't feel like anything had been resolved. We basically ended up back where we started from, and where we started wasn't that great to begin with. 

I am, however, looking forward to seeing this on film. I think this book could be adapted really well to film - with the added bonus of being able to see scenes not involving our narrator Nick. Overall, the novel was interesting. Read it if these sorts of novels interest you, but if you're like me who felt the need to read the book before you saw the movie, then you can probably give this novel a miss. 


  1. I often hear this book referred to by people who glorify the American if they're jealous of Gatsby and his parties. I was rather shocked when I read it that it was actually about the evils of the American Dream. Oh well! :)

  2. I LOVED this book. But I can totally she how and why people would get discouraged with it. I read it last summer when I was working at a summer camp. Maybe right book right time? Or maybe I just love literature and media that deal with the high life of the 1920s? Who knows. That's the cool thing about books to me, though. They can be different things to different people. And even different things to the same people at different parts of their lives!

    I reviewed it on my blog too:


Thanks for stopping by and commenting! Whilst I may not always reply to comments, I do see them and appreciate them all :)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...