Book Club: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

June 24, 2012

Image from Book Depository.

In an effort to catch up on book club reads…….

The Great Gatsby by F.Scott Fitzgerald was my pick for book club this time. I chose it mainly because it was one of those important books many people read at school. I thought maybe I was missing out on something…..

Although now I would call myself a reader, at school I didn’t read a single english text until year 11. Up until then, I gleaned my way through english by listening to classroom discussions and never having an original thought of my own. It worked quite well, but has left me wanting to read lots of ‘formative’ books I should have read at school.

That said…. maybe we needed a high school english teacher in our midst because it just wasn’t that ….well….. interesting or life changing or entertaining. Maybe we all missed something, or maybe it’s overrated as a novel.

I though maybe I didn’t get it because I read it on my ipad, and the medium didn’t suit the substance, but after talking with the other girls in book club (some who had listened and some who had read paper books) I think we all felt pretty much the same.

Image from book depository.

Maybe it was a ‘work of it’s time’ and some of it’s appeal and substance relates to where it sits in history. Maybe if I had read it at school (along with all the others) I would have appreciated it more.

Have any of you read The Great Gatsby? At school or as an adult?

Did we miss something? ….. which is always my concern when poo pooing a ‘great work’.

If you need a set of assignments and probing questions set by an over zealous english teacher to get the full meaning of a book, can it still be considered a ‘great book’?

If I am going to catch up on my missed high school reading in the future, what books would you say are ‘must reads’?

Maybe I just need to wait for The Great Gatsby movie and be entertained with the masses…..

Next book…another classic Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie.


6 Responses to “Book Club: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald.”

  1. Tom said

    I haven’t read The Great Gatsby since high school. My recollection of it was that I was out of my depth. I don’t think I had lived enough then for it to have meaning, but I could sense its power.

    The line that has stuck with me is Gatsby saying “Can’t repeat the past? Why of course you can!”. I remember it as a novel about missed opportunity, and letting go.

    I’ll have to go and read it now.

    • allysonadeney said

      Hi Tom,
      Thanks for the comment.
      That’s always the problem when one is not so bright….they expose their dullness in front of brightness.
      I would love for you to read it again and maybe guest blog for me a real review of this book.

  2. Hi Alison, I think you must do a Jane Austin. I heard the head of the Austin society interviewed on 702’s Conversation Hour (you can get a podcast) and it was fascinating. I’ve read them all in high school and uni, but it made me want to read them again!!

    • allysonadeney said

      Hi Rachel,
      A great idea to read a Jane Austin. I also will go and listen to the podcast and I’m sure be likewise inspired.
      Thanks for the idea.

  3. Heather said

    I studied The Great Gatsby for my HSC and never understood why it was celebrated as a great literary work. In fact I never finished the book and studied for the exam and wrote my essay just using those study books – and I’m an avid reader and was top of my English class. I keep thinking I should read it again now that I’m older, and hopefully wiser and more mature, but I still feel my view of it is tainted. One day maybe….

    • allysonadeney said

      Oh Heather you have made my day!
      There you have it folks …. the librarian has spoken.
      The great gatsby, not all it’s cracked up to be.
      Thanks Heather.

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