While I'm glad it didn't have the typical Hollywood ending, I hate being reminded of the greed of people and the extend they will go to take what fromWhile I'm glad it didn't have the typical Hollywood ending, I hate being reminded of the greed of people and the extend they will go to take what from others have less fortunate....more
**spoiler alert** First, this is the only time that I ever heard of a guy plotting so well to get what he wanted without everyone finding out his plan**spoiler alert** First, this is the only time that I ever heard of a guy plotting so well to get what he wanted without everyone finding out his plan. Gatsby planned everything - the house, the location, the money, the parties, the friends, everything just so Daisy would just happen upon him. Why didn't he just pick up the phone and call her or send her a letter instead of planning for five years? Usually it's a girl who will go thru all that trouble so that no one discovers what she is really up to.
Anyway, I enjoyed this story. I loved how it flowed, the era the characters. I plan on reading The Other Side Of Paradise soon (it's on my ever expanding list). There were two things that I wrote down while I was reading. The first was, on page 65 he spoke of that he traveled to San Francisco which he named the "mid west". Since when was San Francisco in the mid west? Maybe I read it wrong but the book is at home so I will have to check later.
The other thing, Fitzgerald never wrote about days, he wrote about events; the day Nick went to see Tom & Daisy, the day Nick met Tom's mistress, the day of the party, the day Nick invited Daisy over to see Gatsby and on... The reader never learned how much time passed between these events. Nick even mentioned in the book that the days just rolled into events but he didn't plan it that way.
Here's my take on the main characters.
Gatsby - Everything he did was for Daisy. Money was his first motivation for everything - leaving home and changing his name. When he met Daisy, she became his motivation. He wanted her to see how successful and rich he was. If Daisy really cared about those things, she didn't really love him unconditionally to begin with. Too bad he couldn't sit back and enjoy his money. Makes me think what he would be obsessing about once he had Daisy.
Nick - It seemed that he was just a spectator. His only place in this book was to tell the story as if he was the author writing Gatsby's memoirs. He also seemed to be the only one there with a conscience. He couldn't believe how everyone was nonchalant about the death of Myrtle, including Gatsby himself. And he couldn't believe all those people that filled Gatsby's house for the parties yet ran in the opposite direction when it was time to go to Gatsby's funeral. He finally left the city all together he was so disgusted.
Tom – He was a self-absorbed idiot who, with Daisy, created chaos and then turned the other way without thinking about their actions. Tom kept trying to act smart - taking ideas and opinions from books and passing them on as his own. Even his wife saw that and ignored him. He's a racist, quoting from the book "The Rise of the Colored Empire" and a sexist. He didn't even care that Nick was Daisy's cousin when he introduced his mistress to him. And we won't even talk about him hitting Myrtle. He didn't even want Daisy until someone else wanted her and then he freaked. Why was it okay for him to steal another man's wife but no one else could?
Daisy - Another idiot who chose money and power over love. She jumped from one thing to the next without thinking anything thru. She was disloyal to Gatsby three times. The first time by marrying Tom after promising to wait for Gatsby until he returned from the war. Then by allowing him to take the fall for her reckless driving, resulting in Myrtle's death. And then by not going to his funeral. Daisy didn't even care about her own daughter, bringing her out like a trained seal for guests and then when she was done showing her off, gave her back to the nanny after 10 minutes. Sure Tom came back to her but that was because the people they were cheating with died. Eventually Tom will find someone else to fool around with again and Daisy will be miserable.
And the one thing that will drive me crazy about this story, is what happened to the dog that Tom bought for Myrtle? Did someone go get it or did die of hunger and loneliness?
I was inspired on how we kept plundering on with no idea what he was doing; just putting himself out there and learning along the way to keep a promisI was inspired on how we kept plundering on with no idea what he was doing; just putting himself out there and learning along the way to keep a promise and fulfill his dream to help build schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan.
The first thing he learned... "The first time you share tea with a Balti, you are a stranger. The second time you take tea, you are an honored guest. The third time you share a cup of tea, you become family, and for our family, we are prepared to do anything, even die."
More importantly is his message on how to fight terrorism - not with war but with education. A strong message especially since he was there on 9/11. Kind of like what might work here..... hmmmm.
There are rumors now about how the money was mishandled and that he lied about events he talked about in the book. Not sure what I believe but does it matter how he built the schools and why just as long as he built them?...more
Sophie, I liked the comparison of Sophie's beaten biscuits and her life – I don't think you read too much in it – I think it was right on. And it wasSophie, I liked the comparison of Sophie's beaten biscuits and her life – I don't think you read too much in it – I think it was right on. And it was accurate with Burr gone she has become something sweet and better. I'm still a little shaky on what happened to their son it touched on it so lightly that I didn't know exactly what happened that led to his death. Sophie was one of my favorite characters. Especially after Burr died and she started living.
Henry - I think it was more than `mid-life crisis' that had Henry get up and leave his wife and marry Dee Dee. He wanted his cake and eat it too (another silly cliché that I never understood, just like Henry said, what else are you suppose to do with it, frame the cake and hang it on a wall?) He wanted a maid at home to take care of him and the house and a tart on the side to sleep with and make him feel like he was all that. There's no mid-life crisis about it. He was you typical old school male that thought they could do anything they wanted without repercussions. It probably would have been better (or worse depending on who you asked) if he actually married Dee Dee and watched what happened next – they would have made each other miserable – perfect revenge if you ask me.
But he didn't actually leave Vangie until after the daughter died. He kept trying to get her to come back before that. That indicated that it was depression that made him take off to Vegas. He wanted to replace what he lost as soon as possible and that was his opportunity. Eventually he would have been burned regardless if Dee Dee was really pregnant or not. Picture it 5 years later both him and Dee Dee would be cheating on one another. Now at least Billie has a chance to become decent.
Edith – I think she didn't want to move back to New York because there she would be just another artist no different than anyone else. At least in the South she got to be eccentric and stand out. People talked about her and excused her for what they thought were crazy ways. It sounded like she had what everyone hoped for when they started out – the perfect fairy tale romance. Maybe that would have changed if her husband lived longer ;)
Harriet – She was actually fun she reminded me of Harriet Olsen from Little House on the Prairie mean, gossipy and full of herself. Unfortunately she's too blind and dumb to actually realize that she's a miserable old coot so I don't think she will ever see the problems in herself. And she'll believe that she is always happy and perfect.
Dee Dee - She was a product of the time. If she was taught to provide for herself she wouldn't need to chase a man, married or not, to give her what she could have given herself. She was taught that, that was the only option, to find a man to take care of her. She blew it when she found a single man, Renny, so in her mind it would stand to reason that she would have better luck trying to get someone that she knew was a good husband – no matter if it was someone else's husband at least she could fix that. But what I don't understand is why did her aunt let them all stay – why didn't she throw them out instead of putting up with it?
Religion was a character in this book too. Actually it was a villain. Most of them used religion as an excuse. An excuse to snub people or gossip about them, an excuse to write notes instead of telling things to the victims face. An excuse to explain why someone was bad, `those nutty Baptists'. Kirby used it to get everything from food and shelter to sex. Methodists used it as an excuse to explain why they were better than the Baptists, the `Amen Baptists' used it to explain why they were better than the rest of the congregation. Harriet used it to justify all of her disgusting actions. This book is a definite explanation of why there are a lot of people out there that don't like organized religion....more
ehhh I wanted to like this book but I just couldn't. I liked the way she wrote with descriptive sentences and interesting characters but she just didnehhh I wanted to like this book but I just couldn't. I liked the way she wrote with descriptive sentences and interesting characters but she just didn't tie it all together in the end. It was a throwback to the 40's detective novella and I'm dying to try a Karma-Kola.
I did like the touch of the train racing through the bottom of each page as you get closer to the end. ...more
I always like Marion Keyes books it's a nice break from most of the 'more serious' books I read. I especially like this one because it talks about wriI always like Marion Keyes books it's a nice break from most of the 'more serious' books I read. I especially like this one because it talks about writers and getting published. In my opinion Marion Keyes is in the top 3 of Chick Lit writers and everyone who likes the genre should ad her books to the list. ...more
I needed an easy read after "In cold blood" and this fit the bill perfectly. One of my favorite Chick Lit authors this was deals with 30 something girI needed an easy read after "In cold blood" and this fit the bill perfectly. One of my favorite Chick Lit authors this was deals with 30 something girls living life and dealing with issues that I can actually relate to. ...more
It had a slow start, I had to read the first few pages about 10 times but maybe my attention span was short this month. But a good read, very informatIt had a slow start, I had to read the first few pages about 10 times but maybe my attention span was short this month. But a good read, very informative and enjoyable which makes for the best books....more
Fun loving but take it for what it's worth. Freshly divorced, middle age girl runs home with her tail between her legs and falls into a murder scene wFun loving but take it for what it's worth. Freshly divorced, middle age girl runs home with her tail between her legs and falls into a murder scene with her 'touched in the head' mom. Typical formula with a few high end fashion labels thrown in - "Besty Johnson" anyone? Easy read and decent series on to number two. ...more
I just have to say that I kept flipping to the dustjackets to re-read that this is a TRUE story. I couldn't believe all the stuff I was reading.
That bI just have to say that I kept flipping to the dustjackets to re-read that this is a TRUE story. I couldn't believe all the stuff I was reading.
That being said, I can name two people off the top of my head that are psychiatrists and are probably more messed up than their patients. I think you have to be a bit off to deal with everyone's problems.
Let see, I think he was so obsessed with hair because it was something he could control unlike the rest of his life. He could make it blonde or orange he could make it look perfect like a Ken doll. And he was so obsessed with everyone else's hair because again it was the only thing he could control about everyone else.
And apparently this person never heard of Robert Frost when he said no one knows poets.
I did liked the book and I plan on looking at his other books and articles. If this was a fiction book it would bug me to not know what happened after he decided to move to New York but since it's a memoir I guess I can figure it out! :)...more