This critical study of The Great Gatsby not only gives an excellent feel of the time the novel itself was written (see the chapters on The Jazz Age, and The Post-War Voice), but explores in depth themes and issues emerging from the text. Imagery such as death and ghosts, the colours gold and white, and the sea, are all discussed, as is the relationship between the four main scenes where the action takes place. As you would expect, the main characters themselves, and what they represent, are looked at in detail, and Gatsby himself is given a thorough analysis, with dedicated sections on, for example, his mysterious past and the destructive nature of his dream and his aspirations. In addition, this study also offers separate sections on the women characters and their role in the novel. Towards the end of this book, the author broadens her subject matter and places 'The Great Gatsby' in its true context as possibly the greatest American novel ever written. She discusses the myth of the American Dream and the symbolism of the American Mid West and the East Coast.
This critical study offers a fairly thorough and broad analysis of The Great Gatsby, and is certainly useful as a starting point for those studying the novel. It also contains a further reading list at the back.