The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is a classic American novel about life in the twenties. First published in 1925, it is still popular today and will remain a classic for years to come. The narrator of the story is Nick Carraway, a 29-year-old bond salesman from Chicago. The story focuses on the life of his mysterious neighbour, millionaire Jay Gatsby, and his search for wealth and happiness.
Although the book is set in 1922, the story really begins some years earlier. In 1917, Gatsby had fallen in love with a young woman named Daisy while stationed near Louisville. At the time, Gatsby was enlisted in the army as an Army Lieutenant and had to go away to fight in World War 1. While away, Daisy meets a new man named Tom Buchannan who she marries. When he returns years later, Gatsby has become rich and buys a luxurious house close to where Daisy and her husband lives.
One night during one of Gatsby’s parties, his neighbour Nick Carraway comes over and the two of them start talking. They soon become very close friends and during the rest of the novel Carraway remains his only real friend. The events that follow between Gatsby, Carraway, Daisy and her husband ends up changing their lives. In the end some live through it, while others don’t. What happens is a story of greed, betrayal, envy and even murder.
The Great Gatsby is a fantastic work of literature, and I highly recommend reading it. During the roaring twenties, American society enjoyed a high level of prosperity and life was good. The book is well-written and as a reader, you get a very realistic view of what life was like during those prosperous years after World War 1. The story is both exciting and sad, and although the novel did not receive the commercial success of Fitzgerald’s other novels it is by many regarded as his best work.