I'm here because a lot of the awesome people from GR came here. I won't pester people with follows/friend requsets. That's uncomfortable, imo. But please, feel free to friend request me so I know you're open to talk to an author! I love talking to people or just reading their reviews.
I know a lot of people don't have Facebook, so I just took an image of the post instead of linking to it.
What's the point of another review? There are thousands of them on GR and Amazon. Go knock yourself out.
Someone recently remarked that reading was 70% what the reader brings to a book and 30% what the author has written. I'd say Gatsby is more 90/10. I had to read this my junior year in high school and thought it was tedious and over-rated. I decided to reread it yesterday because The Great Gatsby was used as a motif in another book I just finished reading, and other than the decadent and careless lifestyle that great wealth implies, I couldn't really see what the author's point was. Honestly? I still don't get it. I'm going to call it Gatsby-as-book-decor, but I'm also going to thank Mr. Lanyon for sending me back to the original.
Because it. was. fantastic.
Such a beautifully written book. Everything is there that needs to be there, every word is considered and carefully honed, the ideas and social commentary and symbolism is layered seamlessly into the plot and characterization, and the prose is just perfectly perfect. I highlighted and bookmarked so many little tidbits that made me think or made me go "oh yes". In 180 pages or so. I will definitely read this book over again to squeeze more yumminess out of it.
So what changed between high school me and now? Partly an appreciation for writing and use of language that you can't have without lots and lots of varied reading. (Especially lots of bad reading. :D) Partly my binge of a period of Hemingway's career where it intersected the lives of Fitz and Zelda. Last year I read The Sun Also Rises, The Paris Wife and a Moveable Feast, so I have a growing mental construct of the world they inhabited, which filled in (or colored) my views of Daisy and of Nick. But mostly I think it was the conflictedness of it all. At 17 I liked things that were straight forward. Now, I like things that are complicated, where people and situations can be two or more things at once. The Great Gatsby lends itself to that, to appreciating the ironies of the American psyche: our confusions over class, our pursuit of wealth and fascination with it, hoping it will be a solution to every place where we fall short or perceive ourselves lacking. I liked the poignancy of Gatsby, the carelessness of Daisy and Tom, the unreliability of the narrator, the pointlessness of it all.
And Fitzgerald did all this in 180 pages. Everything nice and compacted and accessible in gorgeous spare writing. Amazing. It's a quintessentially American book and I can see why people call it THE great American novel. Looking at the reviews it's obvious that a lot of ESL readers don't find it that interesting, and that makes sense to me too. It's inherently cultural, even down to the divide between the glittering rat race of the East Coast vs. the more solid, plebian pace of the Mid West.
This is definitely a "what you bring to it" kind of book. I'm really glad that what I brought to it this time wasn't my 17 year old self.
A few weeks ago, as Lena Lena watched me and Jess struggle with a reread of Fish & Chips, she decided that maybe she should help us out by turning it into a Steve Rogers/Tony Stark fanfic, sort of a cross-over AU.
Anddddd, drumroll, please, she has started it. First 4 chapters are up here: http://archiveofourown.org/works/1485127/chapters/3134167
Meh, it wasn't as good as Game Change. Maybe the subject wasn't as interesting. I can't say for sure why. Game Change was amazing. This was so-so.
I don't think I'm going to rate this book. I'm not sure I can. Parts were funny, really funny, but it got about midway through and I felt like this wasn't the book I expected. That's not the author's fault. it's mine. I was expecting more bite and more snark and something darker.
The main character of the story is kind of a bland guy--which is done purposefully, but it makes some parts in the middle really drag. I was more interested in his 'nemesis' who seemed in the hypomanic stages of his bp cycle.(That's not snark, I really felt like that was a hypomanic stage: extremely energetic, big aggrandizing gestures, throwing money at things, hypersexual--I know these symptoms researching my own character). That character was very colorful and sucked the energy right out of the MC. When he left a scene, I was left with Doug--and frankly, he was boring the crap outta me.
The images of hell and the landscapes are pretty incredible. I love the author's imagination and I think this would make a really cool looking graphic comic. Little things like skullflowers are very vivid. I don't think i'll ever forget them. And the author did an amazing job of making Hell unique.
I'd give the five stars to the Hell bits of this book for sure. The story? Well, it's also unique, but just not what I was hoping for. Again, that's not the author's fault, so I choose not to rate it overall.
Would you want to read it? If you like morality stories and vivid scenery and want to read a unique take on hell with pretty funny bits between, this book is for you. If you want snark and and a really dark story, then probably not.
I think we're meant to not like Al, but I like him a lot, actually. I find his lechery hilarious and his snark even more hilarious. I love that he doesn't give a shit about what anyone thinks and just lives how he's gonna live and say what he's gonna say. in that way, he reminds me of Sonny and Daniel and Kate and Marleen and I have to say, those are the people I immediately gravitate towards.
I dunno what to say except I like the MC, but he's so bland comparatively. I enjoy looking at the world through his eyes because he sees everything and he analyzes it without a lot of bullshit emotion. It just is and he makes a judgement on some stuff, but some stuff he just sees. It's a cool way to tell a story.
"One man was clearly in charge . He was sturdily built, with a large horseshoe mustache, an outfit made entirely of cheap leather, and a bolo tie. The others were all in modern clothes, but no one acknowledged the anachronism."
Writer-orgasm...wrigasm?--what I have when coming across a word used so absolutely fucking perfectly in a book =D.
You only have until noon CST to vote, so do it right away.
chapter 3 was especially poignant. I like the feel of it and the descriptions. It's very detailed and vivid in the author's head, I can feel that and it puts me there too. A sort of melancholic ending to the chapter but not in a manipulative way.
So far, really good. I love the writing style too.
can't explain why i find this hilarious, but I do:
"There was also a newspaper from 1997, but someone had already done the crossword."
I'm way past that point, but other than i'm enjoying this, I had to note that particular sentence.