Mini Review; The Great Gatsby

  The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is often considered a true American classic, and for good reason- it captures perfectly the ambience and feeling of the 1920s Jazz Age of America.

The novel begins with a long speech by Nick Carraway, the narrator, telling us about the way he lives his life and his recent move to a small home near New York. While not the most engaging of starts, it is worth reading to reach the more fast-paced action.

Gatsby, a character constantly shrouded in mystery, is introduced, and we learn that he is in love with Daisy, a shallow, beautiful girl he knew he was young, and who is now married to his neighbour. Most of the novel surrounds Gatsby’s love for Daisy, and whether it can ever really work.

There are many problems for the characters to face, and Fitzgerald focuses largely on their feelings and thoughts as the story progresses. It is these deep explorations of thoughts and dreams which make the novel what it is, so it may not be for the reader who prefers constant action.

That being said, there is enough action in The Great Gatsby to keep things interesting. Adultery, drunken parties, smuggling illegal alcohol, car crashes; the dark side of the Roaring Twenties provides plenty of interest for this story. 

Be warned, the ending is a little frustrating. There is no clean cut “the good end happily, and the bad unhappily” type of conclusion, so brave yourself to face a stark reality. 

Definitely worthy of its reputation, The Great Gatsby is a wonderful read, provided you don’t mind the fact that it may disillusion you as to the romance of life for the rich and famous of 1920s America.