The Great Gatsby is a novel written by American author F. Scott Fitzgerald in 1925. This novel is supposed to be the best work of F. Scott Fitzgerald inasmuch as it describes the ideals, everyday life, worldview and values of the Roaring Twenties or the Jazz Age. The Great Gatsby is the novel that provides the reader with the complete presentation of the concept of the American Dream. The novel is among the best 20 books of the twentieth century.
The author wrote about the controversial postwar times of economic growth, jazz music, bootlegging and criminal activity. People earned their fortune in different ways. The main character Jay Gatsby is one of such controversial heroes who got his wealth through the illegal activity. Fitzgerald tried to show the diversity of the society of 1920s and he managed to do it whereas we are able to learn about the Jazz Age from all sides.
The plot of the novel is quite gripping and imposing, however, someone can call it banal and trivial. On the one hand, it is a typical love story. On the other hand, it is a dramatic biography of an outstanding person, who managed to achieve a lot in her life. The narrator of the book is a young man, Nick Carraway. He moved to a prosperous and luxury East Egg, Long Island, to his cousin, Daisy Buchanan, who lived with her rich husband, Tom. Nick became a neighbor of Jay Gatsby by chance. Gatsby lived in an enormous pompous manor and organized majestic and alluring parties that attracted the richest people of the nearest cities. Nevertheless, there was hardly a person who knew who Jay Gatsby was. He never appeared at his parties and it surprised his guests. One day, Nick Carraway got an invitation to the party from Gatsby. It was the beginning of their friendship. Nick discovered that Gatsby had known and loved his cousin, Daisy, for many years; therefore, he agreed to organize a meeting for them. The entire tragedy began from this moment.
I dare say that Jay Gatsby is the most mysterious, newsworthy and uncommon character. This man came from a poor family and he wanted to change his life. His past was rich in various adventures, which helped him become a millionaire. Jay had had a romantic affair with Daisy before the war but she decided to get married whereas she did not know whether he was still alive. Gatsby became rich and wanted to marry Daisy believing that it was possible to restore the past feelings. He organized these splendid parties in order to attract her attention. He tried to impress her. Unluckily, this woman became the cause of his death. One can say that Jay is a romantic and idealist who believes in true love and pure feelings. Although the legality of his wealth is questioned, his soul is sheer and he strives to impress and satisfy Daisy. She is the meaning of his life.
Daisy is the opposite character. In spite of being married, she spent time with Jay and took advantage of his feelings and money. She looks like a shallow woman who requires emotions and nothing else.
One can find many problems hidden in the text. Foremost, it is the problem of love and false expectations. Gatsby loves Daisy and wants to marry her though she has a husband and children. It is difficult for her to leave everything and start a new life with Jay. In my opinion, Gatsby lives in his past and refuses to move forward. This desire causes a chain of problems that lead to his death.
Then, we can see the concept of the American dream that is characterized with the belief that the USA is the country of opportunities. A smart person is able to become a millionaire if she occurs on the right place in the right time. The enormous and excessive wealth is illustrated on the example of the parties organized by Gatsby who spends a fortune on every event.
The Great Gatsby is a grand and absorbing novel. The reader will enjoy its plot, style of writing and characters.