I have just finished The Great Gatsby
by F. Scott Fitzgerald.
It has been on my reading list for YEARS now but I somewhat shamefully admit that my interest was due to the reference on One Tree Hill more than its astounding fame.
You see, I've always hated the cover art.. That and I refuse to buy paper back classics. BUT if I don't care for the book at first glance then I usually assume the author didn't care enough to present his work well to the general public. But you know what they say...
You can't judge a book by it's cover.
Never thought of actually applying that literally.
I found Fitzgerald's writing to be escapism at it's finest. It is not the easiest read and having been one of the tiny few who saw the movie first- I find that it was quite helpful to grasp what was actually taking place rather than attempting to sort out the authors way of conceiving ideas and happenings through a beautiful scenery of subtlety.
I have heard so many mixed reviews as to individual opinions of the movie and whether it was justice to the written pages, ruin to the grace and elegance or simple exaggeration of an already timeless story. My personal opinion is that you must have an appreciation for the director,Baz Luhrmann, as he tends to have a very distinctive flair to his work; but I enjoy the change of pace.
Back to the book- it is not a fast read as I would hate to advise anyone of attempting to breeze through it quickly. It is meant to be absorbed. The book can easily take hold of personal dreams and make clear the jumbled longings you've wrestled with; having no luck at actually understanding them and then all of a sudden seeing the feelings you've had for countless years appear in one simple sentence- almost summed up with a neat little bow.
It pulls on the very nature of human longing and desire. The book seems to have a centralized theme of time.Jay Gatsby is a man with whom people know very little about; even considering how hundreds seem to end up at his glorious home every weekend and partake of his food and
endless flow of gin and drink.
That's because Gatsby is a mystery, even at times to those who know him best. He is constantly at a pull of one life and another; the past and the present but always set on the future.
Always set on Daisy.
It is Gatsby who has spent the better part of his life creating this world of lavish and luxury for the woman whom he loved in the past and who he lives for in the present. Every thing he does is to reach further to her and recreate what they had always dreamed of.
And leaves the understandings of reality vs fancy still undetermined to the fanciful heart.
It is a recommendation that the book is read AT LEAST once in your lifetime. It is a wonderful companion for a leisure soak in relaxation for the body but intellectual stimulating for the soul.