Nick Carraway’s move to Long Island becomes a drastically intriguing experience when he comes to learn of his enigmatic neighbour, Mr Gatsby. From glamorous parties to eccentric acquaintances, Nick’s life takes on a different flavour. Despite the rumours surrounding Gatsby’s identity, Nick realises that his neighbour is not what society has pegged him to be.
I did not particularly enjoy reading The Great Gatsby. While F. Scott Fitzgerald’s writing is for the most part straightforward and Nick’s voice had a surprising witty tint to it, it is the execution of the story that left me baffled.
Granted that not all main characters need to have a substantial impact on the plot but, to me, it seemed like Nick’s character was merely a vessel to hold up Gatsby’s story. The narration of his experiences, in the beginning, are fragmented and appear directionless. This is the foremost reason I began to feel disinterested in the book. Try as I might, I was unable to pinpoint a purpose to it all – the character’s actions, the scenes, Nick’s inferences.
It’s only much later, after Nick discovers the connection between Gatsby and ____________________ that there’s a semblance of structure to the story. And by then, I was just waiting to finish reading it.
A majority of the annotations I made had to do with Tom’s character; how hypocritical and orthodox he is. You truly get to discern the double standards that are entertained by society.
If you’ve been putting off reading this because you think the writing may intimidate you, don’t worry about it. While I would not recommend the book to a beginner, it’s quite readable for anyone who has some experience reading classics.
Remember that the initial few chapters are more of a portrait of life in the 1920s than a plot-driven foundation and you’d be good to go!
I plan to revisit the book in a couple of years’ time because I have a feeling that I may perceive it differently, and perhaps even come to enjoy it a bit.