Book Review Day!

I love books. Seriously, it’s a problem. I’m always reading. When I’m not reading, I’m usually editing photos from a recent photography session. When I’m not doing that, I’m either sleeping, exercising (when I’m not injured), and/or spending time with my fiancé. I’m pretty sure a good portion of my salary goes to books (and clothes!), but I’d say that’s a pretty okay thing to be spending my hard-earned money on!

Last year I read 83 books. My goal for 2013 is 100. I’m semi-on track, but let’s just say I need to cruise through about 40 books before December 31st. If this injury keeps up, I probably won’t have too hard of a time reaching that goal. One of things I’m most excited about with the reinstatement of the blog (one of many!) is book reviews! Maybe not always a review of sorts, but perhaps a quick “I’m reading :insert book name here:” or a “Just finished :insert book name here: by :author’s name: and it was ______”. Anyways, you catch my drift.

First up, “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Gatsby-Cover(Source)

Now, I read this my junior year of high school (10 years ago!) and when it popped up on Barnes and Noble for like $.99, I couldn’t help but purchase and re-read.

In my opinion, “The Great Gatsby” may be one of the greatest pieces of fiction ever written. I loved it the first time I read it and enjoyed it the second time. The synopsis below was based off of the write-up on GoodReads.

Set during the Jazz era of America in the 1920’s,  the story focuses on Jay Gatsby, a wealthy, self-made millionaire,  who met Daisy Buchanan before leaving for World War I. The book takes place 5 years later after Gatsby returns, purchases a lavish Mansion in West Egg on Long Island Sound, directly across the sound from Daisy Buchanan’s home with her now husband Tom.  Daisy’s husband Tom is  a bully, yet extremely rich and Gatsby devotes himself  to the pursuit of Daisy.  To do so, he would throw lavish parties at his mansion and wait for her to appear.  (Source)

This book is just an oldie, but a goodie. It ranks up there with “The Grapes of Wrath” and “The Catcher in the Rye” for me. Every now and then, I love a good American classic and this one just hit the spot for me. I made me want to jump back in time to the good old days of Jazz, lavish parties and big fancy dresses. Since I was child, I’ve been mesmerized by that lifestyle and have always loved reading about it. Even now as an adult, I love visiting the mansions in Newport, Rhode Island because it reminds of an bygone era. I WISH we still had parties like that!

Anyways, despite enjoying it, I had moments where I felt it could have moved a bit faster. 3 ½ stars  in my book!

If you ever wonder what I’m currently reading, make sure to check out the ‘GoodReads’ side bar. I keep it as up to date as possible!

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One thought on “Book Review Day!

  1. Ah, that’s the book cover I remember from high school, too. I have recently seen the Robert Redford movie version of the story which I thought was decent. I haven’t seen the new one, yet.

    I don’t remember the book being all that great. But, back then, I was a terrible reader with no pleasure in the effort. Watching the movie, I recalled my teacher making a big fuss about imagery. About the green light and what it might mean. About the eye billboard sign looking at the gas station. Powerful symbolism.

    I remember reading “The Catcher in the Rye”, too, and feeling the same way. It didn’t do for me what the teacher wanted or said was normal. Sure, here was this very 50’s rebellious teenager spouting off and spitting at authorities…but did that relate to me? Not really. I didn’t use the F word that way. And, at the time, I wasn’t sure I wanted to be caught, either.

    I felt like the concepts we read about in the books we were given were beyond me. I am not sure any of my classmates–who seemed even more immature than I–ever grasped the points, either. They BS’d through papers and tests. I struggled to absorb every detail and ace the tasks.

    I imagined the parties being a bit different. And, after seeing them in action, I don’t think I’d want to encourage that lifestyle. Jay was lavish and clever but also foolish. He had money to burn and hid behind it. He was the epitome of what’s wrong with people even today. So much pressure to accrue wealth and “success” at the expense of confidence in speaking face-to-face with others, in exposing one’s true feelings both good and bad. He threw extravagant parties to get closer to someone he couldn’t have and paid the biggest price in the end.

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