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3.8 out of 5 stars27
3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 16 May 2009
With bonkers illustrations and a different ending from the film - well this is based on the original text - this is a heartwarming but ultimately unsettling tale.
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on 5 June 2011
I read this recently as part of a collection of Fitzgerald's short stories and have to say, that man was a genious; inventive, imaginative, creative..... I could go on.
I was prompted to look at this story in particular, having seen the film of the same name starring Brad Pitt and Kate Blanchett, I am sure Fitzgerald would have approved; to develop 35 pages into a 3 hour film, demonstrates considerable commitment and artistic endeavour.
However the credit goes to Fitzgerald whose idea of a life lived backwards is a useful illustratiion of how we are fixed in time largely by our ages and appearance, and a life lived outside of that is fraught with difficulties and dangers. I would urge others to both read the book and see the film, excellent companion pieces.
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on 3 January 2016
Such a cute story, and yet filled with much sadness too. At times, mostly in youth, it would be fantastic to live that life. Growing younger, when old or when really young wouldn't be so great though, and to do it backwards from everyone else... no, thanks. I can't imagine how the author thought this was the funniest story ever, it wasn't an emotion that went through me.
It is an amazing story though. One that everyone should read. Don't let that Brad Pitt movie be all that you know of the story.
I can't comment on the graphic novel part of this. In ebook online, there was no graphics for me to see.
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on 27 April 2013
The Wildside Books edition is a facsimile reprint of the first edition. The reviews complaining about errors and bad design are about other editions.
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on 22 March 2016
Some extra reading, only for those die hard fans! I just can't get enough and I'm guessing that's why you are searching here too.

Well, it did plug that gap... For a little while. Some of the tales are not actually very good, but it's all from the pen of our boy, FSF.

I do like the overall feeling of hot summer evenings... Drinks... Dancing... Being transported to a totally different time...

Enjoy!
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on 30 July 2014
Really excited to see this free on kindle, brilliant stuff, but really, the typos are horrendous, does nobody spell check anything? Such a disappointment. 5star for Fitzgerald, 2 star for rubbish editing.
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on 1 September 2013
I bought this to complete my Fitzgerald collection and found some unread stories within the collection. Arrived on time and was read over a weekend and the following week.
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on 16 February 2013
I bought this for my daughter. I have seen the film - excellent; and so far, she is enjoying the book. It arrived quickly and in good condition.
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The idea behind "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" is a very simple one -- what if a human being were born an old man, and aged backwards towards babyhood? It's an unusually whimsical idea for the legendary F. Scott Fitzgerald, but this short story explores it very well, with poignancy and a measure of humor.

In 19th-century Baltimore, Roger Button was horrified when he saw his newborn son -- a newborn son who is actually a wizened old man who speak, walk and is fully self-aware. Though Benjamin is dressed and treated as much like a child as possible, he has the sensibilities and habits of an elderly man. And by the time he's twelve, he finds that his aging is REVERSING rather than progressing.

As his life goes on, Benjamin must deal with the problems of trying to live a semi-normal life -- trying to enroll in college, working for his father, falling in love and marrying. But as his body de-ages, his mind does as well, and in his twilight years he begins to do all the things that young men of the time did, until his bizarre lifespan reaches its unnatural conclusion.

"The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" is one of those short stories that really leaves you wishing it were a full-length novel, just because the whole idea is so rich. While you more or less know how things will go for Benjamin Button, the pleasure is following his life as he changes and evolves, and how the world deals with a man who's aging backwards.

In particular, Fitzgerald seems to be taking some jabs at people who are so blinkered that the bizarre doesn't even reach them. Benjamin's wife and kid resent his de-aging, but they insist that the whole thing is a "joke" or his attempt to be "different from everyone else." His fusty son Roscoe is the worst ("It seemed to him that his father, in refusing to look sixty, had not behaved like a 'red-blooded he-man'").

Fitzgerald's writing is also sublimely atmospheric ("the eastern sky was suddenly cracked with light") with lush descriptions of everything about the world that Benjamin experiences ("her feet were glittering buttons at the hem of her bustled dress"). He also fills it with a sense of sorrow and lingering pain, since despite the outward success of his life, Benjamin is doomed to never live it normally.

"The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" is indeed a curious story -- strange, insightful and sometimes barbed in tone, but always amazingly written.
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on 31 August 2014
I struggle with aspects of Fitzgerald. His first novel seems to me unreadable nowadays and his second as pathetic as it is brilliant. 'Tender is the Night' oscillates between insight and triviality, sophistication and fecklessness. The unfinished 'Last Tycoon' would probably rest unread were it not for its author's fame and the sadness evoked by his death at Age 45. It is really only 'The Great Gatsby' among his novels that remains worthy of remembrance, and it is a novella in truth, hardly a full-fledged novel in the great tradition. A few of Fitzgerald's stories may also be worth re-visiting - 'The Rich Boy' famously - but in this volume there are only two candidates, 'May Day', which extends the author's palette beyond the undergraduate japes that appear at its core, and 'O, Russet Witch', which justifies the author's road taken with Zelda vs the one which might have been his had he resisted her allure. That that allure would prove fatal is manifest in 'The Lees of Happiness' among other works here. A Wildean penchant for epigram can be seen in two Princeton-era playlets, which seem frankly silly if you are not a pre-'20s student; a Twain-like inclination to fantasy impels 'A Diamond as Big as the Ritz' and 'Benjamin Button', though both verge on the embarassingly self-conscious in artifice. A later, more serious Fitzgerald might have developed into a Jamesian genius, but alas that great expectation was never achieved.
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