Friday, 10 May 2013

What I Read :: The Great Gatsby Book Review (and movie expectations!)

I've a short Semester's break this week so i thought i would indulge in reading something for pleasure that had not been assigned to me. Sure enough twas a good time! I had forgotten what it is like to pick up a book and read it because you want to in your leisure time. To long for the moment when you can pull it out and smile to yourself, sharing secrets with pages and ink and characters and an author, to have heavy eye lids but whispering in your heart, despite all the obligations of tomorrow just one more chapter... A feeling i think no writer should ever let themselves forget.

I'd been running across a lot of hype for this movie lately, i figured well if the release is about a week away, a week is enough to read the book and have fun seeing how the big screen adapts the story. The movie premiers today.

Warning: There will be spoilers in this post if you haven't read the book.

Fitzgerald uses mysterious delayed introduction, foreshadowing and my favourite, beautifully crafted similes to tell a lovely short story showcasing what is often classified as the American dream. I think what i enjoyed most about this novel was the rich, vivid description of details one can not readily see with the eyes of an onlooker, yet...he is one. The author uses very careful diction, piecing it together to say a multitude of meaning in one sentence. His writing is like poetry, he strives to use the perfect words, not one more and not one less.

His choice of point of view helps to farther the alluring mood of his story, taken from the perspective of an innocent by stander sucked into a world of glitz and glamor, of wealth and prestigious. Nick, the person through who's eyes we see this tale, while has come from some money one gets the impression that he has not particularly adored it or sought to proudly own it but rather to simply live, purposefully To be rich in character and wisdom, both superficial accessories in the time when the book is set.

Summarizing Nick from the text:

' Yet high over the city our line of yellow windows must have contributed their share of human secrecy to the casual watcher in the darkening streets, and I was him too, looking up and wondering. I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life.' Chapter 2

It takes the reader a little time to get past the well described frills of the aristocratic society that is a central theme of the novel, one finds that at the heart of the story is a heart, a broken heart, a longing heart, a heart that seeks to feel the drum beat of love again, that seeks to be told that self worth is truly in equal proportion to prestige as it appears and as is handed down religiously by society.

This man seeks to do anything to move forward by going backwards, to live by re living happiness. And so he spends his entire life chasing the key to the road not traveled and for him, his key comes in the shape of a beautiful refreshing Daisy...

But what happen when one grabs hold of a key to the garden of love where youth was spent? Will the flowers still be in bloom? Or will they have withered by the time you get to prying that door open again with hands finally worthy to touch it?

We often expect a memory, a place, a feeling in time to stay exactly as we remember it...but is that possible? Is our memory, is the strength of our love enough to sustain it?

That is the dangerous question The Great Gatsby (oh the irony!!) has forgotten to ask himself...

There is a moment in the story when Daisy crumples up Gatsby's letter and one wonders if they really just spend the entire novel asking each other with hopeful eyes if the paper crumbled up can be perfect again...

Quotes i loved:

That Summarised the book:

Chapter 9
'They were careless people, Tom and Daisy — they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness, or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made… . '

Chapter 9
'Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that’s no matter — to-morrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther… . And one fine morning —— So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.'

That Summarize Characters: 


Chapter 5
'consumed with wonder at her presence. He had been full of the idea so long, dreamed it right through to the end, waited with his teeth set, so to speak, at an inconceivable pitch of intensity. '


Chapter 6
'He knew women early, and since they spoiled him he became contemptuous of them, of young virgins because they were ignorant, of the others because they were hysterical about things which in his overwhelming self-absorption he took for granted.'


Chapter 8
' And all the time something within her was crying for a decision. She wanted her life shaped now, immediately — and the decision must be made by some force — of love, of money, of unquestionable practicality — that was close at hand'

 Random Well Worded Others:

Chapter 5
 ;No amount of fire or freshness can challenge what a man will store up in his ghostly heart.;

Chapter 6
 ;The truth was that Jay Gatsby of West Egg, Long Island, sprang from his Platonic conception of himself.;

Chapter 7
;There is no confusion like the confusion of a simple mind,'

Chapter 7
'' and it occurred to me that there was no difference between men, in intelligence or race, so profound as the difference between the sick and the well'

Chapter 9
“I’m thirty,” I said. “I’m five years too old to lie to myself and call it honour.”

 My Very Favourites:

Chapter 7
“Self-control!” Repeated Tom incredulously. “I suppose the latest thing is to sit back and let Mr. Nobody from Nowhere make love to your wife. Well, if that’s the idea you can count me out… . Nowadays people begin by sneering at family life and family institutions, and next they’ll throw everything overboard and have intermarriage between black and white.”

Chapter 4
“There are only the pursued, the pursuing, the busy and the tired.”

What I'm looking forward to from the movie the most? 

Honestly? i CAN NOT WAIT to see Gatsby's car! Its such a repeated motif, the vehicle of his splendour, at the centre of his highest greatness and lowest of lows, looked upon as he grasps hold of it all and watches all slip away. Magnificently bitter sweet!

  Also, might i add i passionately dislike Daisy. I can't help but notice how dapper Tom looks in the movie too! lol did not picture him so hot!

 These two (Nick & Jordon) were my favourite and i can't wait to see them lovin' on each other!


  1. I do want to see this movie and book must be interesting too! Great review, darling!
    Have a great time!

    Best wishes, Alexandra

  2. I haven't read this book since high school. And while I'm a little embarrassed admitting this, I really remember practically nothing from it, and actually don't remember enjoying it that much. With that said, I'm still really looking forward to the movie. Although a lot of that just may be due to the fact that Leonardo Dicaprio is in it!

  3. Okay, I have never read this book, which is mind-boggling if you ask me, since it's supposed to be a classic. I think I am feeling inspired by blogland to read it finally. I haven't seen the movie yet. Did you go see it? (Had to skip a large part of your post because you said it would ruin it for those of us who've never read it.)-Jess L

    1. i haven't gotten round to seeing the movie yet, we have a delayed time of theatre showings here but it's alright i'm not in too much of a hurry, i can be kind of a harsh judge on a movie when i've read the book lol


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