The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Synopsis: Boy meets girl. Girl marries other boy. Other boy has other girl on the side. Boy befriends girls’s second cousin so boy can rekindle love with girl. You got that?
Thoughts: You know, it’s really easy to review a book that nobody has read. People will take what I say (undoubtedly with a grain of salt) and make the decision to read or not. Upon finishing the book, my words will be long forgotten and therefore not really subject to any close scrutiny. But then you pick up a book that everybody and their mama (literally) have read and it’s a tad more daunting of a task. So allow me to ramble on this way for a few paragraphs without actually saying anything of substance. OK? No? Damnit.
For being a reasonably short novel, The Great Gatsby really is quite a bear of a book. I remember first reading Gatsby in high school and spending countless classes going over all the symbolism and other such literary devices that are peppered through the novel. This time however, I took the approach of enjoyment reading. Though I did pause to reflect on certain passages (and yes, I even remembered some of that symbolism), I was certainly aware that many of the book’s subtleties were soaring far above my head.
But despite missing some of what made Gatsby…well, Gatsby – I really did enjoy the read. Fitzgerald brings such life not only to his characters, but also to the setting. And I definitely was able to better understand the plot line this time around. As incredibly suave and savvy as I was as a 15 year old (I absolutely was not), I don’t believe I fully understood the whole american-dream-gone-wrong theme. Gatsby was a much darker novel that I remembered – and I kind of loved discovering that for myself.
Overall Grade: A-
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