The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby

Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald

Format: Hardcover

Pages: 282 pages

Language: English

ISBN: 9780684515151

Published: June 1961

In 1922, F. Scott Fitzgerald announced his decision to write "something new--something extraordinary & beautiful & simple & intricately patterned." That extraordinary, beautiful, intricately patterned, & above all, simple novel became The Great Gatsby, arguably his finest work & certainly the book for which he is best known. A portrait of the Jazz Age in all of its decadent excess, Gatsby captured the spirit of the author's generation, earning itself a permanent place in American mythology. Selfmade, self-invented millionaire Jay Gatsby embodies some of Fitzgerald's--& his country's--most abiding obsessions: money, ambition, greed & 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...& one fine morning--" Gatsby's rise to glory & 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, 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 pursuing wealth by whatever means--& 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. Millions made, Gatsby buys a mansion across Long Island Sound from Daisy's patrician East Egg address, throws lavish parties & 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 & written in crystalline prose, The Great Gatsby is as perfectly satisfying as the best kind of poem.