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The Great Gatsby
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Old Group Reads > The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

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message 1: by Nicolle, Founder (new) - added it

Nicolle | 1390 comments Mod
Hi everyone, welcome to the wonderful world of Fitzgerald. Sorry I am a bit late in posting this. :)


Jonathan (headspinningfromvagueness) | 648 comments I quite like this book, having read it two years ago for school. I like the prose and the first and last lines are brilliant!


Janice (Janaz28) | 52 comments I really liked the book as well and I am tempted to read it again with the group. I am very busy with University at the moment, studying two language, but I will try to read along with everyone. I might finish a little later than everyone else :)


Veljko (_VxF_) | 65 comments Since I move to the US pretty late in my life, I did not go to high school here and did not read this book before. It was always on my list of things to do, but I I just never got to it - it just did not sound very exciting.

So I finally picked it up last week and found out how wrong I was in my low expectations. The plot is not only more eventful than I had expected, but the prose is extremely effective. Clear, concise, and functional writing - but not, for that, dry. The book is overall more funny than I expected it to be, with some pleasant humor in there.

This book embodies all the reasons why I am so happy to have joined this reading group. A great book I probably would have kept walking by without actually ever reading it, had it not been for the extra motivation of the group read.


Melissa | 21 comments Hey fellow book lovers! I finally got a copy of The Great Gatsby, I tried and tried to locate one at a garage sale or at Goodwill, but no luck.
:-( So I got it from the library instead. I haven't started it yet, but I'm looking forward to it!


Melissa | 21 comments Veljko wrote: "Since I move to the US pretty late in my life, I did not go to high school here and did not read this book before. It was always on my list of things to do, but I I just never got to it - it just d..."

I totally agree with you, this group has introduced me to some great books I have really enjoyed, and wouldn't have bothered picking up if they wouldn't have been the monthly read here. :)


Alex L (alackey90) Surprisingly, I missed out on this one in high school. After having read it however, the name of the "great" Gatsby seems a little grandiose for his character. Throughout the book, I felt he merely hid behind his name and money and never took a real stand for what he wanted. In fact, everyone in this story is hiding in some form or another.

Though well written and definitely a classic, it is a tragedy and I am not one who enjoys them. Good to say I read it, but not one I'm likely to pick up again.


Laura (lcjensen) I can't say that I liked it or disliked it. I really liked how Fitzgerald described the story and characters without really telling you about them. But I had issues with the characters. I couldn't stand Daisy, Tom, or Jordan, found Gatsby mysterious, and unclear about Nick. Interesting story.

In some discussions, I've seen people describe Gatsby as romantic about this love of Daisy. Do you agree? I found it a bit creepy.


Jonathan (headspinningfromvagueness) | 648 comments Laura wrote: "I can't say that I liked it or disliked it. I really liked how Fitzgerald described the story and characters without really telling you about them. But I had issues with the characters. I couldn't..."

Yes, Fitzgerald wrote characters that were unlikeable to show the failure of their lifestyles and who they were I often feel. It's not a Romance between Gatsby and Daisy, it's an obsession.


Cecily | 39 comments I often find books with unsympathetic characters a more compelling read. I certainly agree with Jonathan's comment about Gatsby being obsessed with Daisy, rather than romantic about her.


Veljko (_VxF_) | 65 comments Alex wrote: "Surprisingly, I missed out on this one in high school. After having read it however, the name of the "great" Gatsby seems a little grandiose for his character. Throughout the book, I felt he mere..."

I think the title 'the Great' is almost 'tongue in cheek'. The narrator certainly does not admire Gatsby, although there clearly is sympathy there - and a growing empathy, as we approach the end of the book. In the end chapters he feels pity for Gatsby - see, for example, his trying to contact people for the funeral, without much success.

But it's a great title, one that truly puts emphasis on the fake front of the character, who, as you say, hides behind his (new) name.


message 12: by Jenika (last edited Nov 08, 2012 06:06PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Jenika I enjoyed the book. I liked that the prose was spare, without any more words than were needed, but still contained some incredibly vivid descriptions of the characters and the way they interacted, eg. I loved the scene where Gatsby and Daisy met in Nick's house and both were very tense.

I agree that most of the characters are unlikable, (although I did like Nick), but I don't think this detracts from the story. As Cecily says, it made it a more compelling read.

I've given it 3 stars, but I think I would get more out of it if I read it again, and might then rate it higher.

It's made me want to read more Fitzgerald. I've had Tender Is the Night on my to-read list for a while.

Has anyone else read others by him?


Jonathan (headspinningfromvagueness) | 648 comments I've read his short story, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and The Last Tycoon. All I can say is Gatsby is definitely his best novel from what I've read so far.


Essemar | 2 comments I am just going to start reading this today. It's a book I've had on my 'must read' list for a long time now, so I'm really looking forward to it.


Chris | 57 comments I was glad to have a quick read after Anna Karenina which took me two months to read! I read this in high school (or perhaps "half-read" would be more accurate). I remember that I was bored reading it in high school and was curious to see how I would feel about it now.

It is a tragic story of obsession and I certainly did not find it boring. That being said, it did not break into my top five or ten favorite works. I am glad that it came up in the group so I could give it another try! Despite best intentions, it is doubtful I would have come back around to it on my own!


Jenika Jonathan wrote: "I've read his short story, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and The Last Tycoon. All I can say is Gatsby is definitely his best novel from what I've read so far."

Thanks Jonathan, I'll check these out :)


Snoozie Suzie (SnoozieSuzie) I listened to this earlier this year and gave it two stars. I didn't review it but I remember not particularly disliking it rather just not really enjoying it if that makes sense. The earlier comment re unlikable characters struck home so I couldn't like the book although I did appreciate the story. I am glad I listened to it though, as it made a change for me to read something a little different to my usual genres.


Jewett (doclibby) | 7 comments I read this years ago and enjoyed it but fcund that reading "Zelda" helped with understanding where the author was coming from when he wrote it.


Alex (AlexAndTheBookNerd) | 1 comments I am currently reading this book for an extended project at school in my english class, (I am 14). I am around 50 pages in and will probably finish by saturday. I am really enjoying the book so far. I have to analysis the book and reviewit for monday outlining techniques Fitzgerald has used. Are there any which you think are really important to note? I will post again when I have finished the boo and highlight the ones I think are important. But any help would be good. :) thanks


Jonathan (headspinningfromvagueness) | 648 comments Alex wrote: "I am currently reading this book for an extended project at school in my english class, (I am 14). I am around 50 pages in and will probably finish by saturday. I am really enjoying the book so far..."

The narration techniques are particularly important to pay attention to in this book. The Reliable narrator and omniscient narration at times I believe stand out to me. Fitzgerald also uses highly poetic language as a technique and references to myth and popular culture.


message 21: by Niklas (last edited Jan 11, 2013 08:57AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Niklas | 1 comments At first, I thought ''ugh, another boring book I have to read for school'' but then I dipped into the world of ''The Great Gatsby'' by Fitzgerald and sometimes it really was hard to understand because I am not a native English speaker, however I do not regret reading the book.. I loved it and I am of the opinion that it always has another impression concerning your circumstances and stuff.
I absolutely would recommend this fantastic book although the story is not that much thrilling.


Joy (joybugger) | 201 comments I didn't like this book when I read it in high school. But I re-read it this year in preparation for the movie, and I understood it better this time around.

On my first reading it seemed like a bunch of snobs who were self-centered and why should I really care what they did?

This time I caught the satire in the language and the way he developed (or under developed) the characters. They were one dimensional, cartoon like in their exaggerated flaws and in the way they didn't make sense. And yet they made you think. My favorite quote is when Jordan says that she loves large parties because they're so intimate and that at small parties there's no privacy. (I need to find the exact quote.) On the surface that's totally illogical but if you think about it you can see a grain of truth.

The audiobook I listened to had a bunch of letters from Fitzgerald to various people at the end of it. They were written when he was trying to get Gatsby published and soon after its release. He describes Gatsby as "excellent prose" on more than one occasion. I don't know anything about the author and I couldn't help wondering if he knew he had crafted a lasting treasure, if he was joking by speaking highly of his own work, or if he was simply full of himself.


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Books mentioned in this topic

Tender is the Night (other topics)
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (other topics)
The Last Tycoon (other topics)
Anna Karenina (other topics)