“Angry, and half in love with her, and tremendously sorry, I turned away.”
Nicknamed “The Great American Novel,” F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby is set in 1922 and narrated by Nick Carraway.
Carraway moves into the West Egg district of Long Island next to a mysterious millionaire named Jay Gatsby. Each weekend, the eccentric Gatsby hosts an extravagant party for people he hardly knows. The young, beautiful, and wealthy attend his illustrious parties to get a glimpse of the accused bootlegger.
Nick is invited to attend later that summer and finally meets the great Gatsby, only to find that he’s rather dissatisfied with his highfalutin lifestyle. Nick learns why after spending the day out cruising with Gatsby.
Gatsby fell in love—surprise, surprise—with a cousin of Nick’s: the lovely Daisy Buchanan. All of his parties were attempts at rekindling with Daisy once more; they were attempts at impressing her. Now, Nick is his golden ticket to seeing Daisy once more.
Curious at the proposition, Nick agrees to set up a meeting over tea with Daisy and Gatsby. Naturally, their love is set aflame once more, and the love affair begins all over again. Daisy’s scumbag husband, Tom, becomes suspicious of their relationship, which results in accusations and investigations—even though his mistress, Myrtle, is perfectly acceptable in his eyes.
While Gatsby continues to woo Daisy, Nick is thrown into a world of lush parties and pretty people—without any real answers as to who the great Gatsby really is. How did Gatsby really become a millionaire? Did he really attend Oxford? Was he really in the war?
The most beautiful thing about this story probably isn’t even the story itself—it’s Fitzgerald’s unmistakable style. If you’re interested in becoming a novelist and want to master style, pick up this book. Fitzgerald knows how to evoke emotion and paint a picture you’ll never forget.
“But his heart was in a constant, turbulent riot. The most grotesque and fantastic conceits haunted him in his bed at night. A universe of ineffable gaudiness spun itself out in his brain while the clock ticked on the washstand and the moon soaked with wet light his tangled clothes upon the floor.”
An expert editor, seasoned writer, and author-centric marketer, Shayla Raquel works one-on-one with authors and business owners every day. A lifelong lover of books, she has edited over 300 books and has launched several Amazon bestsellers for her clients. Her award-winning blog teaches new and established authors how to write, publish, and market their books. She is the author of the Pre-Publishing Checklist, The Rotting (in Shivers in the Night), and her novel-in-progress, The Suicide Tree. She lives in Oklahoma with her two dogs, Chanel and Wednesday.