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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

the great gatsby

Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgastic future that year by year receds 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.

In anticipation of the new movie coming out, I recently reread F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsy.  I last read the book in high school and honestly didn't think much of it at the time.  Having low expectations going into it, I was blown away by it this time around.  There was so much that I missed when reading this as a sixteen year old.  There's a lot of subtelties and nuances that could be missed if you were just speeding through for a homework assignment. 

For those of you who don't remember or somehow missed this in high school, The Great Gatsy tells the story of Mr. Jay Gatsby, a self made man living an extravagant lifestyle in New York in the 1920s.  The reader comes to realize that Gatsby's elaborate parties, his huge Long Island massion, his fancy clothes - all are part of Gatsby's ideal vision for himself, a vision that can only be completed by recapturing his long lost love Daisy Buchanan.    

I loved this story, loved the dialogue, loved the way the characters are revealed and developed, loved the language.  Though the book is relatively short, I realized that the story is written so that you're forced to take your time with it - the same way that speed bumps help you to slow down in a park and enjoy the scenery.  I recommend giving this book a first, second, or even third chance, old sport. 

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