So this week I decided to do something a bit more chilled because last week was so busy ! I read The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald and I loved it ! Like, a lot. I was randomly rummaging through a friend’s book collection last week and decided to borrow it and give it a go. Next thing I know, I’m hooked. I’m sure a lot of you know the gist of the story, but I really had no idea. The first time I heard the words ‘Great Gatsby’ was in reference to a party theme a couple of years ago. I blame this on the fact that I didn’t grow up in the UK. Probably.
I didn’t study this book, so I almost definitely missed some deeper meanings, but it also made it more enjoyable ! The writing was beautiful. I am planning on re-reading it soon because I feel like I didn’t take it all in the first time round. These are a few sentences that really stood out for me:
- “The late afternoon sky bloomed in the window for a moment like the blue honey of the Mediterranean.”
- “Every one suspects himself of at least one of the cardinal virtues, and this is mine: I am one of the few honest people that I have ever known.”
- “At 158th Street the cab stopped at one slice in a long white cake of apartment-houses.” – This really stuck with me because I have always said that some buildings remind me of cake !!
- “I’m glad it’s a girl. And I hope she’ll be a fool — that’s the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool.”
- “I wasn’t actually in love, but I felt a sort of tender curiosity.”
- “Reserving judgments is a matter of infinite hope.”
- “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.”
- “Angry, and half in love with her, and tremendously sorry, I turned away.”
- “And I like large parties. They’re so intimate. At small parties there isn’t any privacy.”
- “I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life.”
- “No amount of fire or freshness can challenge what a man will store up in his ghostly heart.”
- “Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.” – How fitting for this time of year.
There are a couple more, but that’s already a pretty long list !
I then decided to take it one step further (hence the slightly delayed post – sorry), and watched the 2013 film starring Leonardo DiCaprio. As is usually the case, the book surpasses the film. It’s not a bad film – I would have probably liked it more if I had watched it before reading the book, but I’m glad I didn’t. It’s worth a watch, just to compare the two !
One more thing – I was watching a Gilmore Girls episode a couple of days ago, when Lorelai mentioned ‘Zelda and F. Scott’. I was like ‘no way – what a weird coincidence !’ and went on to read more about them on wikipedia. It was so interesting to find out that his stories and characters were severely influenced by his personal life. He even took straight quotes from people in his life and put them in his books ! I love that. It makes you feel like you know him, like he puts a lot of himself into his writing. No doubt I will be reading more of his books ! My mum recommended ‘Tender Is the Night’.
If you haven’t read ‘The Great Gatsby’, or even if you were forced to read it in school and analyse it, I recommend reading it (again) ! It’s not that long and it gets you thinking.