Classic Time!

Way back a couple of months ago, I challenged myself to read one classic book a month. Easy Cheesy right? Apparently not. I was doing so good! I pumped out The Red Badge of Courage during month one, even though it was god awful. Month two was redeemed with Jane Eyre . . . and then I ran out of days in April and kind of skipped that month. Who knew bettering yourself would be so difficult?  Luckily, I stuck to my guns this month and took in a classic. I just finished F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby.

GoodReads description:
A portrait of the Jazz Age in all of its decadence and excess, Gatsby captured the spirit of the author's generation and earned itself a permanent place in American mythology. Self-made, self-invented millionaire Jay Gatsby embodies some of Fitzgerald's--and his country's--most abiding obsessions: money, ambition, greed, and the promise of new beginnings. "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--tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther.... And one fine morning--" Gatsby's rise to glory and eventual fall from grace becomes a kind of cautionary tale about the American Dream.
First off, I liked this book and enjoyed the bajezzus (yes, that’s a word) out of it. The most amazing thing was that this novel took me by absolute surprise because it wasn’t anything I expected. Everyone who hates the book describes it as a book detailing the lives, and problems, of rich people, leaving me to imagine a book that was probably disjointed and lacking any real story. (You’re probably wondering why I bothered to read it in the first place if I thought it was going to suck but here’s the thing 1) Everyone has heard of this bloody book and I don’t like feeling behind when it comes to books 2) I kept confusing this book with Matt Damon’s movie The Talented Mr. Ripely, don’t ask, and it led to many puzzling scenarios 3) A movie adaption of the book is coming out, starring the stunning Leonardo Dicaprio, and I’ll be damned if I’m heading to see the movie without having read the book and 4) It is considered The Great American Novel (you can just imagine how this infuriates the haters)).  Fortunately, the book was nothing like I expected and I became engrossed in an interesting story of a man trying to reclaim what he once lost.
See Gatsby and Daisy once upon a time ago had a love affair. Unfortunately, the world was in the middle of a war and when Gatsby deployed it became too difficult for rich, popular Daisy to continue waiting for him and she married another man. Now it’s easy to hate Daisy for abandoning Gatsby, especially for someone like me who stopped reading Dear John because I began to loathe the main female character (Not to rant, but the two stars of Dear John fall in love within like what? a week? and then as soon as he's been deployed for awhile she starts pulling for apparently no reason! Okay maybe there was a reason but I stopped reading the stupid book so who knows), but with Daisy and Gatsby it seemed different. True they had fallen desperately in love with one another, but it was the type of love that had to overcome obstacles, ie: Gatsby not having enough money to provide for Daisy, and it’s easy to let hurdles that once seemed so minute when you’re together to grow wild when you’re apart. Once Daisy lost the magic they had held together, she began to question what exactly she was waiting for.
And that's it.
You’ll have to forgive me but I’m currently enamored in the lives of the characters in my current book The Magicians so it’s hard to reflect any more on my last book and this is all I feel like sharing.
So bottom line: If you are trying to get into the classics give The Great Gatsby a try. Good novel and it’s short!
P.S. When looking for a picture of the book for the blog I realized another reason why I was so iffy on reading this book. The freaking cover! Seriously, the cover is really wierd. Why are there eyes above a carnival scene? I mean I know what the eyes are meant to represent but still! Covers draw people in and this repels them. No joke.


Post a Comment