As I mentioned in a previous post, I'd like to read some classics this year so with that in mind, the first one I picked up was The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.
" 'I believe that on the first night I went to Gatsby's house I was one of the few guests who had actually been invited. People were not invited - they went there.'
Jay Gatsby's opulent Long Island mansion throngs with the bright young things of the Roaring Twenties. But Gatsby himself, young, handsome and mysteriously rich, never appears to his guests. He stands apart from the crowd, yearning for something just out of reach - Daisy Buchanan, lost years before to another man. One fateful summer, when the pair finally reunite, their actions set in motion a series of events that will unravel their lives, bringing tragedy to all who surround them.
Widely considered F. Scott Fitzgerald's masterpiece, The Great Gatsby is a tale of excess and obsession, and a work of classic twentieth-century American literature."
I didn't read the synopsis before I picked up this book and as I haven't watched the films either, I hadn't a clue what it was about or what to expect. I have to say that the first half of the book had me wondering why it was considered a classic, but once I had read to the end, I could see that the beginning is merely setting the scene for what is to come.
I definitely found the the story a book of two halves. The second part of the book was infinitely more interesting, or to me at least, quicker paced and held my interest far more than the beginning. As for the characters, there was only one who I was remotely interested in, that of the narrator, Nick Carraway, and I suppose this is because he's more relatable than the rest who are self-absorbed socialites. I cared very little what happened to them. I do think you have to have some affinity with the people you're reading about, so perhaps the reason I'm not raving about this book is because I don't.
Although I wouldn't give this book a five out of five rating, I can see why some people would see it as a classic. As I said previously, it definitely improves in the second half, and I'd actually like to read it again at some point in the future as I think you often get a different feel for a book when you read it for a second time. I'd also like to see one of the films now too.
Have you read this book? What did you think of it?