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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was looking at some TOP 100 novels lists (for example, TIME's TOP 100 of ALL TIME and Modern Library's top 100 by ML Board and TOP 100 by readers).

In all three cases, THE GREAT GATSBY made the list, and in many lists it made the top ten (on one list it was #1).  I found this ironic, not because I don't love the book--I do, and I'm lucky enough to teach it almost every year--but because Fitzgerald never got to know that his book would achieve this sort of fame.  I know it was a big hit in his youth, but I think by the time he died the book was seen as out of fashion and a sort of flash-in-the-pan of the jazz age.

Just curious--would you put Gatsby in your top ten?

Julia
 

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It's definitely in my top 10. The rich characters drew me in. You're right, from what I understand, Fitzgerald had a tough time by the end of his career. Did he find it more and more difficult to write toward the end of his life? Can't recall...
 

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I saw the movie so many years ago, and never read the book.  For some reason right before I got my Kindle I picked it up used at the bookstore.  It was much shorter than I thought it would be and I felt it was better than the movie.  But I can't say that it's one of my favorites at all....that's what makes life interesting I guess.  Different tastes all around!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I think a lot of people grow to appreciate it in school--maybe because class discussion allows them to see all the beauty and nuance of the book.  But I am also not a fan of the first movie--I can't remember the director, but Coppolla wrote the screenplay--because, while they captured the spirit of the jazz age, I thought the casting was abysmal, and so was much of the acting.  It didn't capture Fitzgerald's themes for me at all.

I know Fitzgerald was perceived as sort of a sell-out for moving to Hollywood, but I don't know if he thought of himself that way. One source said that he considered Gatsby "a failure."

Julia

PS  The director of Moulin Rouge--forgot his name--is now casting a new version of THE GREAT GATSBY.  They just considered, and then rejected, Ben Affleck for the role of Tom.  I think Tom should look much more bulky.
 

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Gatsby may even be in my top five.  For some reason a lot of the literature of the early 20th century seems to connect with me - Hemingway, Faulkner, ALL THE KING'S MEN, THE BIG SLEEP - seemed like a time when people were writing about the modern age's discontents.

I have read the Fitzgerald's popularity fell off a cliff, mainly as a result of the depression, when much serious fiction focused on working people, not the upper classes.  There was a lot of escapism, though, Fred Astair type stuff.  I wonder why Fitzgerald couldn't find a new niche?  Plus, as someone else said, he died in middle age, before he could see his books become popular again.
 

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Sorry, Bottom 10 for me, but maybe I should give it another try.

On another thread, I mentioned that my college professor opined that, as with cats and dogs, many people are divided between Hemingway and Fitzgerald, and I'm a Hemingway fan. There were several responses to that comment, though, from people who like both.
 

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I've never read it. It was never part of the reading list for any class I took, and the subject matter interests me not at all, so I've never bothered, in spite of admiring FSF's writing ability.
 

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I read the Great Gatsby in high school (a loooooong time ago).  I absolutely loved it.  I think F Scott Fitzgerald had a way with words, but I'm sorry to say I've never read anything else by him.  Gatsby is definitely in my top ten, though.
 

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Daniel Arenson said:
No. I had to force myself to read the first few chapters, and couldn't finish it.
This. For whatever reason I don't seem to enjoy a lot of the literary greats. Oh I like Dickens, Austen, and the like. But moving into the next century we get to writers like Fitzgerald and Hemmingway, who aren't my favorites. *Ducks flying tomatoes*
 

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Dara England said:
This. For whatever reason I don't seem to enjoy a lot of the literary greats. Oh I like Dickens, Austen, and the like. But moving into the next century we get to writers like Fitzgerald and Hemmingway, who aren't my favorites. *Ducks flying tomatoes*
You may want to join the Pre_joycean Fellowhip (and I may be right behind you, at least until we get to the bar ;) ).
 

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Dara England said:
This. For whatever reason I don't seem to enjoy a lot of the literary greats. Oh I like Dickens, Austen, and the like. But moving into the next century we get to writers like Fitzgerald and Hemmingway, who aren't my favorites. *Ducks flying tomatoes*
I'm exactly the same. I especially dislike American literature. The British weren't quite so bad during that particular century.
 

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I've never read it, but this thread reminded me that I've always wanted to. I remember DS liking it when he read it in high school. It's now waiting for me on my Kindle. :)
 
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