Bonnie's Reviews > The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
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Feb 29, 16

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bookshelves: classics, audiobooks, 1001, banned-challenged, romance-illicit, unreliable-narrators, triangle-of-love, 2011, literary-fiction
Recommended to Bonnie by: 1001 Books to Read Before You Die and BBC Book List
Read from October 05 to 26, 2011

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One of the great classics of the 20th century... well, a statement like that will definitely get anyone interested in reading it. Many of you read this in school, but naturally I missed out on this one as well. This one is not only on the BBC Book List but the 1001 books to read before you die.

’For a moment the last sunshine fell with romantic affection upon her glowing face; her voice compelled me forward breathlessly as I listened – then the glow faded, each light deserting her with lingering regret like children leaving a pleasant street at dusk.’

I thoroughly enjoyed the writing of F. Scott Fitzgerald; it was by far the best part of the book. I had a major disconnect with the characters as I found them to be quite shallow and pretentious. The whole story seemed off for me; but I think that was just the overall oddness of the characters themselves.

My impression going into this book was that it was to be a great love story… how Gatsby loved Daisy but the war came between them. Daisy, becoming tired of waiting for Gatsby to return, marries Tom who’s a loaf of a man that cheats on her quite openly.

Now I understand this is a book not set in the 20th century and women were supposed to all be stay out home mothers who took care of the house and the children and kept their mouths shut so I naturally didn’t expect her to get fed up with his cheating and hit him over the head with a dinner plate, but I really did expect more. By the end it all felt a tad anticlimactic and there was a resounding ‘So… what was the point?’ floating through my head.

All in all, I’m glad to have read it so I can now say that I’ve read it, but that it’s definitely not going down as one of my faves.
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Reading Progress

10/20
13.0%
10/21
33.0% "'Every one suspects himself of at least one of the cardinal virtues, and this is mine: I am one of the few honest people that I have ever known.'"
10/24
53.0% "'I think that voice held him most with its fluctuating, feverish warmth because it couldn't be over-dreamed - that voice was a deathless song.'" 2 comments
02/29 marked as: read
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Comments (showing 1-37 of 37) (37 new)

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Heidi Glad I am not the only one....sometimes I read these classics and think huh? What did I miss...


Bonnie Mm-hmm... I've been experiencing the same but I still feel that it's important to have read them so I'm willing to suffer to get to the good ones. :)


Heidi Bonnie wrote: "Mm-hmm... I've been experiencing the same but I still feel that it's important to have read them so I'm willing to suffer to get to the good ones. :)"

Yep I agree I read a bunch of them between h.s. and college some good ones I can recommend..Frankenstein, Catcher in the Rye (my fav), The Scarlet Pimpernel, Tale of Two Cities, Count of Monte Cristo and of course Gone With The Wind..I also liked Les Miserables but I would go w. the abridged on that one. I suffered through the full one!


Bonnie Yep, those are all on my list. Except for The Scarlet Pimpernel. I've been working off the BBC Book List mainly for my classics and that one isn't on there for some reason.


Heidi Bonnie wrote: "Yep, those are all on my list. Except for The Scarlet Pimpernel. I've been working off the BBC Book List mainly for my classics and that one isn't on there for some reason."

oh add Scarlet Pimpernel it is so good very romantic. Frankenstein will surprise you.. it to me was sad.


message 6: by Shirley (new)

Shirley Marr Nice review Bonnie. I've made 2 false starts in the past trying to read it... but your comment on being important to read the classics might just spur me on to give it a proper go this time :-)


Bonnie heid21 wrote: "Bonnie wrote: "Yep, those are all on my list. Except for The Scarlet Pimpernel. I've been working off the BBC Book List mainly for my classics and that one isn't on there for some rea..."

I'll do that! Thanks!


Bonnie Shirley wrote: "Nice review Bonnie. I've made 2 false starts in the past trying to read it... but your comment on being important to read the classics might just spur me on to give it a proper go this time :-)"

I can completely understand... it kinda took me forever to read this and it's like less than 250 pages. But for me I managed to miss so many classics when I was younger, both good and bad, but I still feel like they're important to have said you've read them. Even if you didn't like them.


message 9: by Shirley (new)

Shirley Marr Yeah, me too! It gives me food for thought about why they're important, significant works etc. I've had a pretty good run with the ones I've read. I'm :-) with The Sound and The Fury, The Outsider, Wake In Fright... :-( with The Picture of Dorian Gray and Nineteen Eighty-Four but <3 <3 with generally anything Bronte or Austen


Wendy Darling This conversation you ladies are having about the importance of classics is all very interesting, and I agree--but I have to say I wasn't a fan of this one, either! That stupid light at the end of the pier and all the forced symbolism, ugh.

Scarlet Pimpernel is so much fun, though, Bonnie. I think sometimes it doesn't make the "important" classics list because of it, hah.


message 11: by Shirley (new)

Shirley Marr >> That stupid light at the end of the pier

Wendy, if I needed one other reason to read this book, then "stupid light at the end of the pier" has totally sold it for me!

I better read it before the movie comes out and every bookclubber and their dog is seen clutching a copy...


Wendy Darling Shirley, you can't fool me. I know all you want to do is read about elegant ladies in spangly dresses.


Heidi Wendy Darling wrote: "Shirley, you can't fool me. I know all you want to do is read about elegant ladies in spangly dresses."

I am glad you agree too Wendy..this book was a definite What is the big deal...I am glad you agree about Scarlet Pimpernel I loved it.


message 14: by Shirley (new)

Shirley Marr Wendy Darling wrote: "Shirley, you can't fool me. I know all you want to do is read about elegant ladies in spangly dresses."

:D oh noes! And so the truth comes out!

BTW, hello there Heid!

The consensus seems to be in favour of The Scarlet Pimpernal. I must admit that I've never picked up this book cos I am somewhat a title snob and the name totally puts me off! But thanks for the endorsements thread peoples :-)


Heidi Shirley wrote: "Wendy Darling wrote: "Shirley, you can't fool me. I know all you want to do is read about elegant ladies in spangly dresses."

:D oh noes! And so the truth comes out!

BTW, hello there Heid!
hi Shirley,
Nice to meet you! I truly hope you will pick up the Pimpernel. It will surprise you..it is so romantic. I might just have to read it again. Heck we all should buddy read it sometime. It is short too!



Wendy Darling Ohh, Miss Marr. The Scarlet Pimpernel is a lot of fun. Beautiful women and dashing, heroic men in disguise! One of the more exciting and romantic classics, and actually pretty funny, from what I remember.


Bonnie Yeah I'm still on the lookout for the fun classic that I really enjoy that's actually on the list. lol


Heidi Ok well let me know when you read it. I would also highly recommend Catcher in the Rye it is so different!


message 19: by Shirley (new)

Shirley Marr @ Heidi, I'm always up for a readalong ;-)


Heidi Shirley wrote: "@ Heidi, I'm always up for a readalong ;-)"

Thanks for the add Shirley. Absolutely whenever Ms. Bonnie is ready!


Bonnie Oh! A readalong for... the Scarlet Pimpernel?


Heidi Yep Scarlet Pimpernel...


Bonnie haha! Okay. I'm reading zombie books with Maja and Wendy right now but I'm thinking maybe sometime next week?


Heidi Bonnie wrote: "haha! Okay. I'm reading zombie books with Maja and Wendy right now but I'm thinking maybe sometime next week?"
No hurry on my end I am digging out from under a pile...so whatever works for you and Shirley and maybe Wendy?


Heidi Oh and since I am not certain where my copy is...haven't seen since the move from PHX to Portland I checked on Amazon and you can get an e book copy for free. Here is the link. http://www.amazon.com/The-Scarlet-Pim...


Bonnie Awesome! Even better.


Heidi Bonnie wrote: "Awesome! Even better."
Yep now more people can join in


message 28: by Jim (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jim Love this review, Bonnie. I read it back in the day, but what I remember fits perfectly with your reaction to it.


Bonnie Thanks, Jim.

I had high hopes for this one, but oh well. :)


message 30: by Jim (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jim Yeah, me too. But if memory serves, the shallow arrogance of the old-money rich was what fascinated Fitzgerald. An interesting contrast with Hemingway, who loved the tough guys and the grit and wrote that way.


Bonnie Yeah that sounds about right.

I haven't read any Hemingway yet so I'm not sure. :)


message 32: by Jim (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jim I loved Hemingway in my younger days, but he is definitely not for everyone. If you want to check one out, I would recommend The Old Man and the Sea. Relatively short, and it really shows what he was all about.

I really like your idea of reading through a lot of the classics - still trying to do that myself!


Bonnie Ha! I guess I have read Hemingway. The Old Man and the Sea is one of my favorites from my school-days! Totally spaced it that it was written by Hemingway. :)

Not all the classics are great, but I've found some real jewels.


message 34: by Jim (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jim Well, there you go! As for spacing it, I could write a book on the subject, except that I would space before I sat down to type it!

I will be looking for those jewels on your list soon! Great talking books with you..


Bonnie hahaha

You too, Jim.


message 36: by Jim (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jim Thanks, Bonnie!


message 37: by Mark (new) - rated it 5 stars

Mark Regarding "Now I understand this is a book not set in the 20th century." Why do you even think that, let alone "understand" it? The book takes place in the post WW I 1920s, what some people refer to as "the jazz age" or "the roaring twenties." What century do you think might be the setting for this book if not the 20th century?


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