I didn't read it in high school because I was rebelling against finding the symbolism in EVERYTHING I had to read. I'm glad I finally heard it. I'm not sure I want to hear it again, though. The story was okay, but I think I expected something more, but I don't quite know what.
I didn't enjoy the narration as much as I wanted to, either. There wasn't much differentiation between characters' voices.
Love to listen.
The narration took awhile to pick up. Gyllenhaal seemed to try to put too much meaning in each word up until then. The voices and pacing were much better in the second half of the book. Great listen.
The book is fine; the prose is beautiful and haunting at times. The only thing I'd change is the book's status; it's a really good book but overrated. I don't really understand why it's generally regarded as the great comment on "The Jazz Age." It's solid. It's well done. Worth all the credit it gets? I don't think so.
I would recommend it, if for no other reason than everyone expects you to know it. It's part of the culture; you need to know what everyone is talking about. It's a pleasant enough experience, if simple in plot.
Mr. Gyllenhaal did a fine job of drawing his characters, although his Southern Belles sound like 1950s gay man stereotypes.
I did watch the movie; in fact, the recent version and the HORRENDOUS Robert Redford version from the early 1970s. It's a simple story with vivid characters, why on earth can't they make a decent film of this book? I expect it's because they try too hard to attain the "greatness" of the novel.
loved the contents. I saw the movie first then read the book, and the book is far better; can savour the expressions.
This story is the story of every man, woman and inner child. The hopeful anticipation of tomorrow and the disappointment with today resonates throughout the american spirit. In many ways Gatsby is the american dream itself, the unrelenting unselfish sacrifice of today in hopes of a better tomorrow. The pursuit of an unattainable ideal and the resentment of those who have what they can neither appreciate nor do they deserve. The world is filled with Toms and Daisys and Jordans; and while finding a Gatsby is rare - it is mr. Carroway that most eludes the real world. Carroway metaphorically representing our own consternation and disgust with the end of Gatsby as the end of optimism and the jaded cynicism that 30 brings with it leaves one to ponder the question, who lived best? Was it the moral man Carroway, the golden girl Daisy, the bored socialite Tom, the gangster Wolfshiem, the realest Jordan Baker? Or was it in fact Gatsby? Tragedy is unavoidable in life. Gatsby teaches us however that tragedies can be beautiful, heroic and meaningful. Fitzgerald seems to posit the ending to your own life and poses an unspoken challenge, an ultimatum of sorts: will your life's sentence end with a period, a question mark or will you end life end with exclamation!?
Someone else said it better than me - “It grieves me deeply that we Americans should take as our classic a book that is no more than a lengthy description of the doings of fops.”