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Book Review on the Great Gatsby

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. Continue reading

The Hunger Games Book Review

People definitely enjoy reading about future. The genres of science fiction, utopia and anti-utopia have always been popular among readers. That is why I have decided to write a short review of the book related with anti-utopia. Its title is The Hunger Games. Although many experts refer this novel to adventure and science fiction, I believe that its place is among such masterpieces as 1984 and Brave New World. Both books inform the reader about the totalitarian world of the alternate reality or the nearest future. Doubtless, everyone has heard about the movie under the same title but very few people had read the novel before they saw this film. I belong to the second team of the keen cinema-goers who watch a screen version and then read a book. Thereof, the first book of the series of three novels was written in 2008 by the American author Suzanne Collins. The novel is a bestseller whereas millions of its copies have been sold all over the world. Besides, The Hunger Games is supposed to be the first novel for young readers, which has sold a million of its electronic copies. This series of novels has been translated into 26 languages. Continue reading

Book Review on Robinson Crusoe

There is hardly a person in the world who has not read Robinson Crusoe. Everyone likes adventure stories about pirates and sailors who visit uninhabited exotic places. Robinson Crusoe is one of such books. The novel was written by Daniel Defoe in 1719. At that time, people enjoyed reading about the undiscovered islands and continents whereas there were still many white spots on the map of Earth. One can say that this novel was revolutionary, because it introduced realism into fiction. It is hard to define the genre of this book forasmuch it possesses many features, which emphasize its originality. The novel is written in different forms. Foremost, it is an epistolary novel, because Daniel Defoe wrote the text in the form of a diary. Secondly, the novel is confessional as the protagonist shares his emotions and impressions about his life on the uninhabited island. Finally, Robinson Crusoe is a didactic novel inasmuch as it contains many instructions and recipes. The protagonist describes how to do the peculiar things and how to cope with the specific challenges. In these details, we are able to notice the elements of realism. Continue reading

Book Review: Freedom and Death by Nikos Kazantzakis

“Freedom and Death” is a novel based on the 1889 rebellion of the Christian Greeks of the island of Crete, against the rule of the Muslim Turks. The novel aims to humanize the events of the uprising and make it relatable to the readers, by detailing the amplification of humans’ struggle with love, friendship and freedom in the time of war. Its main characters are Captain Michalis and Nuri Bei. Michalis represents the Greek side of the conflict and Nuri Bei, a political ruler and Michalis’ blood brother, represents the Turks, helping the reader understand both perspectives of the predicament.

Both characters suffer a tragic fate in the story, as victims of war, but they die in different ways. While both die because of war, Michalis is killed directly by the sword while Nuri Bei suffers lasting psychological damage that changes his life completely, leaving it unbearable. Other important characters include Manoussakas, the victim of Nuri’s revenge for his father’s death, Emine, Nuri’s wife until his suicide, and Kosmas, nephew of Captain Michalis. The storyline of the novel interweaves these characters in order to understand the and effects that the Cretan revolt had on each individual and how each individual can be interpreted as a representative of their people.

One of the most important events that lead to the climax of this novel is the death of Nuri Bei. After Nuri Bei commits suicide, the problematic environment of Megalokastoro becomes even more chaotic and ready for revolt. The central conflicts of this novel are ideological, internal as well as sexual. Michales and Emine are caught in two love triangles with two other central figures in the novel, Nuri Bei and Captain Polyxingis. The protagonist is seen struggling with this situation, reclassifying it as one of his fights with his inner demons. As emotions flare and soldiers from both sides wage war against eachothr, the central conflict develops. The ongoing theme is the conflicting ideology associated with old values of ancient Greece, represented by Michales and the contradicting informed resolutions represented by Kosmas. The novel climaxes when the Monastery is taken over by the Turks due to Michales’ inner conflict regarding his responsibility and destiny. His decision to kill the temptress Emine is parallel with his decision to overcome his conflict and materialistic desires for the greater good. The last scenes of Freedom and Death present the protagonist in his final fight. The falling action of this novel makes Michales’ into a tragic hero who is willing to sacrifice his life for a cause in which he believes. In this event, the Turks kill Kosmas and Michales, nephew and uncle, in the rugged mountains of Crete. Continue reading