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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An essential piece of 20th century literature
The iconic novel of the 20s and an American classic, F. Scott Fitzgerald's greatest novel finally gets the edition it deserves.
Published 20 months ago by O P J

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lovely classic, worth checking out.
I have been meaning to read The Great Gatsby for some time now, so I’m glad I was inspired to read it recently. It’s not a long read, or hard to read so it was perfect to slot in between reads! I thought it was an enjoyable enough read, but I didn’t feel blown away by it. I think it’s because it was so short, I didn’t really have time to get...
Published 2 months ago by Chrissi Read


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ben Dinsdale, 23 Sep 2008
The titular hero is based on the real life playboy/social butterfly Ben Dinsdale. This classic book and its story still resonates today. At the core of the book is the elaborate infatuation Jay Gatsby has for Daisy Fay Buchanan, a love story portrayed with both a languid pall and a fatalistic urgency. But the broader context of the setting and the irreconcilable nature of the American dream in the 1920's is what give the novel its true gravitas.

Much of this is eloquently articulated by Nick Carraway, Gatsby's modest Long Island neighbor who becomes his most trusted confidante. Nick is responsible for reuniting the lovers who both have come to different points in their lives five years after their aborted romance. Now a solitary figure in his luxurious mansion, Gatsby is a newly wealthy man who accumulated his fortunes through dubious means. Daisy, on the other hand, has always led a life of privilege and could not let love stand in the way of her comfortable existence. She married Tom Buchanan for that sole purpose. With Gatsby's ambition spurred by his love for Daisy, he rekindles his romance with Daisy, as Tom carries on carelessly with an car mechanic's grasping wife. Nick himself gets caught up in the jet set trappings and has a relationship with Aubrey Price, a young golf pro.

These characters are inevitably led on a collision course that exposes the hypocrisy of the rich, the falsity of a love undeserving and the transience of individuals on this earth. The strength of Fitzgerald's treatment comes from the lyrical prose he provides to illuminate these themes. Not a word is wasted, and the author's economical handling of such a potentially complex plot is a technique I wish were more frequently replicated today. Most of all, I simply enjoy the book because it does not portend a greater significance eighty years later. It is a classic tale that provides vibrancy and texture to a bygone era. It is well worth re-reading, especially at such a bargain price.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Dangerous Look Backward . . . Dooming the Future, 6 Sep 2004
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Great Gatsby (Paperback)
"So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past." These are the last words in the novel, and sum up its theme. Our minds (like moths to the light) are drawn irresistibly to the most wonderful moments we have experienced. Our mistake is then to build our future around them, not realizing that they can never be recaptured. In pursuing the past into the future, we deny ourselves the real potential of the future.
The Great Gatsby is developed in novel form around the story line of a Greek tragedy. Nick Carraway, Gatsby's neighbor, is the narrator, serving the role of the chorus. This choice of structure creates a marvelous reinforcement for the book's theme. The novel is constricted by the tragic form, even as Gatsby's future is by his immobilization by the past. If you like that sort of irony, you'll love The Great Gatsby.
Nick knows both Gatsby (his neighbor in West Egg, Long Island) and Daisy Buchanan (his cousin who lives in East Egg, Long Island). Daisy knew Gatsby before he was Gatsby and before meeting Tom, her husband. Gatsby has made himself into a rival for Daisy over the five years since they have last seen each other, and makes his play for her again through Nick about mid-way through the book. Daisy and Tom's responses shape the tragedy that is this story. I won't say more because it will harm your enjoyment of the novel.
The story itself is somewhat dated by the romantic perspective of the Roaring Twenties, and few will read it for the instant connection they will feel with the characters. Why would someone want to read this book? I see three reasons. The first is to explore the theme of moving illusions about the future built from the happiness of the past. The second is to see a fine example of plot development. There are no wasted words, actions, and thoughts. The third is to enjoy the language, which is beautifully expressive.
These are not characters you will find uplifting. "They were careless people . . . ."
Why did Fitzgerald create such characters? Precisely, because he did not approve and did not want you to approve. Everything that glitters is not gold is another way of summing up the lessons of this novel.
Why should someone not read this book? A reader who wants to be inspired by positive examples will find little to uplift oneself here. Someone who wants a story they can personally identify with will likely be disappointed. A student of how to create love and happiness will mainly find out how to create heartache and unhappiness. So the book is not for everyone.
After you have read the book, I would encourage the self-examining reader to consider where in one's own life the current focus is dominated by past encounters rather than future potential. Then consider how changing that perspective could serve you and those you love better.
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Dangerous Look Backward . . . Away from the Future, 5 Sep 2004
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   
"So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past." These are the last words in the novel, and sum up its theme. Our minds (like moths to the light) are drawn irresistibly to the most wonderful moments we have experienced. Our mistake is then to build our future around them, not realizing that they can never be recaptured. In pursuing the past into the future, we deny ourselves the real potential of the future.
The Great Gatsby is developed in novel form around the story line of a Greek tragedy. Nick Carraway, Gatsby's neighbor, is the narrator, serving the role of the chorus. This choice of structure creates a marvelous reinforcement for the book's theme. The novel is constricted by the tragic form, even as Gatsby's future is by his immobilization by the past. If you like that sort of irony, you'll love The Great Gatsby.
Nick knows both Gatsby (his neighbor in West Egg, Long Island) and Daisy Buchanan (his cousin who lives in East Egg, Long Island). Daisy knew Gatsby before he was Gatsby and before meeting Tom, her husband. Gatsby has made himself into a rival for Daisy over the five years since they have last seen each other, and makes his play for her again through Nick about mid-way through the book. Daisy and Tom's responses shape the tragedy that is this story. I won't say more because it will harm your enjoyment of the novel.
The story itself is somewhat dated by the romantic perspective of the Roaring Twenties, and few will read it for the instant connection they will feel with the characters. Why would someone want to read this book? I see three reasons. The first is to explore the theme of moving illusions about the future built from the happiness of the past. The second is to see a fine example of plot development. There are no wasted words, actions, and thoughts. The third is to enjoy the language, which is beautifully expressive.
These are not characters you will find uplifting.
Why did Fitzgerald create such characters? Precisely because he did not approve and did not want you to approve. Everything that glitters is not gold is a way of summing up the lessons of this novel.
Why should someone not read this book? A reader who wants to be inspired by positive examples will find little to uplift oneself here. Someone who wants a story they can personally identify with will likely be disappointed. A student of how to create love and happiness will mainly find out how to create heartache and unhappiness. So the book is not for everyone.
After you have read the book, I would encourage the self-examining reader to consider where in one's own life the current focus is dominated by past encounters rather than future potential. Then consider how changing that perspective could serve you and those you love better.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A timeless classic brought to life with beautiful imagery, 10 Jan 2013
By 
This new edition of Fitzgerald's novel is beautifully illustrated with vintage imagery which captures the essence of the 1920s - a divided time of lavish parties and speakeasys whilst prohibition raged, where gangsters brushed shoulders with highest echelons of polite society - a time epitomised by the wealthy, enigmatic Gatsby who hosts, yet never attends, lavish parties in his Long Island mansion in the hope that one night his long lost love Daisy will appear.... Jay Gatsby is the incarnation of the American dream and the Great Gatsby the tragic American Creation Myth....
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes this classic work even better, 9 Jan 2013
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I am a big fan of Scott Fitzgerald and I am thrilled with this edition; it is extremely well-presented edition with very authentic period illustrations that brings the story even more to life. I can practically see Jay Gatsby swanning into view! All in all a great edition of a classic story.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic!, 28 Oct 2010
This book is an American classic and you just have to read it to see why!

The descriptive writing, character musings mixed with a potent romantic language makes the book magical. I find Fitzgerald's words hypnotic and can sit and read this book from cover to cover. I feel as if I am back in the day, at one of Gatsby's parties, in the open top cars, at a gathering, working as selling bonds. It's facinating, enthralling and a different class of classic as it's accessible today, you understand the problems, empathise, love, hate and enjoy every single situation, every word. I love this book - it's amazing!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A haunting novel from a marvellous writer., 9 Nov 2001
By 
Fitzgerald's most famous work is a totally absorbing story with fascinating characters that keeps you gripped from first page to last. Although his very descriptive prose can be slightly difficult, it nonetheless adds great beauty. It is the type of book you may have to read twice or three times before its greatness may become apparent, as it does seem rather slight the first time around, given its reputation. But, no matter what, this haunting and memorable tale will stay with you. Definitely a classic, and a book everyone should experience.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pleasantly surprised, 1 July 2014
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This review is from: The Great Gatsby (Kindle Edition)
I often struggle with classics. I feel they get over hyped and get dated by the time I read them 100 years after they were written (92 in this case). But I was not one little bit disappointed with this. The prose was very accessible and I got you right into the moment, how I wish I was at those parties! Despite its lofty reputation this is an easy to read book, but it conveys great passion and weaves an intricate story with great pace in a pleasingly small number of pages. Readable in a weekend. Brilliant
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jay Gatsby's Timeless, Tragic Journey, 9 Oct 1997
By A Customer
By avoiding period references, Fitzgerald's brief fable of doomed love and the American psyche takes on a dream-like, ageless quality. His attention to details of characterization, rather than setting, avoid dating the book and help give Gatsby as much significance in our time as it had in the Roaring 20's.

Reading this novel, one is struck by the references to disturbing trends in our own times: the "nouveau riche" and their desperate search for meaning in their lives, shady fortunes won and lost on the stock market overnight, and
the frenzied quest for personal satisfaction while ignoring the needs of those around us.

Yet Gatsby is redeemed -- as we all are, as America has been for over 200 years -- by his belief in a better future, a perfect life that is always just around the corner. It is this quality which ultimately makes us understand and love Jay Gatsby. It is most certainly what draws me back to this slim, quiet book year after year,
with so many other bigger, louder books clamoring to be read.
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60 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A green light to go and read this novel, 25 Nov 2002
'Gatsby' is the American Dream; but more than that, 'Gatsby' is about dreaming. It is an incredibly concise novel of lyrical genius. It is poetry and social commentary. A work of art and a historical document. A light breeze through the jazz age and a complex layering of narrative perspectives. A hedonistic trip through gloriously decadent capitalist excess and a crushingly melancholic musing on lost love.
If you're a romantic read this because Fitzgerald's employment of prose will make you weep.
If you're an english student read this because it will tell you everything you need to know about the influence of cinema.
If you're a historian read this for the way Fitzgerald doctors his text to avoid censorship laws in 1925.
If you're a social scientist read this because it has only one equal in its study of the illusion of American idealism. Alexis de Tocqueville's 'Democracy in America' is 100 years older, 250 pages longer, and not written in melting prose.
That is not to say that this work is without fault. Crucially for anyone who is compelled to regard such things in a novel that doesn't warrant it, the logic of Carraway's narrative does not follow. Fitzgerald originally wrote what now constitues the ending to sit at the front of the novel, and in its new-found position Carraway has access to information that in reality he would not have. This, as might be apparent, is the criticism of a man who was forced to read the work at A-Level.
Strangely, this has not diminuished from his continued enjoyment. Indeed, even after numerous returns to Fitzgerald's astonishingly few pages this is the single fault I find in this work.
Daisy will make you want to love. Tom will make you want to earn millions. Gatsby will make you want to dream.
Read it first as a fantastically crafted story, second as an insightful social commentary, and third as a work of perspective genius. Read it because you haven't already. It is as brilliant as that green light.
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The Great Gatsby (Wordsworth Classics)
The Great Gatsby (Wordsworth Classics) by F.Scott Fitzgerald (Paperback - 1 May 1992)
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