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The Great Gatsby | [F. Scott Fitzgerald]

The Great Gatsby

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic American novel of the Roaring Twenties is beloved by generations of readers and stands as his crowning work. This new audio edition, authorized by the Fitzgerald estate, is narrated by Oscar-nominated actor Jake Gyllenhaal (Brokeback Mountain). Gyllenhaal's performance is a faithful delivery in the voice of Nick Carraway, the Midwesterner turned New York bond salesman, who rents a small house next door to the mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby....
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Audible Editor Reviews

Editors Select, April 2013 - I knew I always liked The Great Gatsby, but having not read it since high school, I couldn’t remember exactly why. After listening to Jake Gyllenhaal’s superb narration, I was reminded of what I found so great about F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic. Gyllenhaal strikes the right chord as, Nick Carraway, who exists within the hyper-privileged world of Long Island’s upper crust but manages to avoid becoming jaded and swept up by the materialism of his cousin, Daisy, and the titular Gatsby. Fitzgerald’s elegant yet simple prose still holds up, and Gyllenhaal treats it with the utmost respect, allowing the vivid descriptions of mansions, landmarks, and 1920s New York to flow at just the right pace. While ultimately tragic, The Great Gatsby is full of light and beautiful moments that kindle a nostalgia for the Roaring Twenties, and I was glad to have been reintroduced to a favorite book this way. —Chris, Audible Editor

Our editors picked their favorite scenes from The Great Gatsby! Listen to it on the Audible Studios Soundcloud Channel.

Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Finalist, Classic, 2013

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic American novel of the Roaring Twenties is beloved by generations of readers and stands as his crowning work. This new audio edition, authorized by the Fitzgerald estate, is narrated by Oscar-nominated actor Jake Gyllenhaal (Brokeback Mountain). Gyllenhaal's performance is a faithful delivery in the voice of Nick Carraway, the Midwesterner turned New York bond salesman, who rents a small house next door to the mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby. There, he has a firsthand view of Gatsby’s lavish West Egg parties - and of his undying love for the beautiful Daisy Buchanan.

After meeting and losing Daisy during the war, Gatsby has made himself fabulously wealthy. Now, he believes that his only way to true happiness is to find his way back into Daisy’s life, and he uses Nick to try to reach her. What happens when the characters’ fantasies are confronted with reality makes for a startling conclusion to this iconic masterpiece.

This special audio edition joins the upcoming film - as well as many other movie, radio, theater, and even video-game adaptations - as a fitting tribute to the cultural significance of Fitzgerald’s Jazz Age classic, widely regarded as one of the greatest stories ever told.

©1925 Charles Scribner's Sons. Copyright renewed 1953 by Frances Scott Fitzgerald Lanahan (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

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Performance
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  •  
    Janice Sugar Land, TX, United States 04-19-13
    Janice Sugar Land, TX, United States 04-19-13 Member Since 2010

    Rating scale: 5=Loved it, 4=Liked it, 3=Ok, 2=Disappointed, 1=Hated it. I look for well developed characters, compelling stories.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Bracing myself for the negative votes"

    There's good news and bad news.
    First the good news: As expected, Fitzgerald writes beautifully and has clearly communicated the decadent and dissolute atmosphere of the time and people of whom he writes.

    The bad news: I just didn't like any of the people of whom he writes. Reviewer Melinda has cheerfully offered a 21st century version of Gatsby, and I totally agree with her "then vs now" comparison. Fitzgerald's characters have the depth of the Kardashians and the moral compass of Lindsey Lohan. Gatsby himself is little more than a celebrity worshipping groupie trying to sell himself as one of the beautiful people in his effort to make his delusional fantasy of love and riches with Daisy come true. I found nothing authentic or admirable about any of the supposed loves, as every one of them is self-serving at the core. The single honorable act was Gatsby trying to protect Daisy, but even that reveals a basic contempt for another person's life. Nothing "Great" in that.

    I know this is a classic. I acknowledge Fitzgerald's use of words. As a reflection of the "lost generation" of which he was a key member, this is a literary reality show. I just didn't enjoy the show very much.

    46 of 61 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jean Santa Cruz, CA, United States 04-19-13
    Jean Santa Cruz, CA, United States 04-19-13 Member Since 2010

    I am an avid eclectic reader.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A Classic"

    Like most people I read this book in High School but did not remember much of it. Fitzgerald's ability to set a scene, his descriptive passages, the command of word choices is unparalleled. The core of the book is the elaborate infatuation Jay Gatsby has for Daisy Buchanan. The broader context of the setting is the irreconcilable nature of the American dream in the 1920's that gives the novel it's ability to capture the essence of an era. Jake Gyllenhaal does a great job narrating the story. It is easy to see why this book is considered a classic of American literature. Glad I decided to re-read the story.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Victoria Dublin, CA, United States 04-15-13
    Victoria Dublin, CA, United States 04-15-13 Member Since 2011

    Active Mommy

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I can't believe I hadn't read this sooner"

    This is a classic American novel that I can't believe I hadn't read earlier. Having just finished it, I can see why it is a classic. Great story that made me feel like I was living the lifestyle of the 1920s that the author described so vividly. Jake Gyllenhall did a fabulous job narrating and the tone and cadence of his voice made me want more and more. My only regreat was that I finished it too quickly.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christopher 04-22-13
    Christopher 04-22-13
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    "Tolerated it in high school. Loved it now"

    I vaguely remember grinding through reading this book in high school. With the new movie coming out and knowing that is one of the great classic American novels, I wanted to give it another chance. This time the experience was so much different and better in every way. The story was fascinating and crisp and the prose was wonderful.

    I won't really review the novel itself since it is a classic and held in the highest regard. I will say that Gyllenhaal did an outstanding job with the narration -- one of the best I've ever heard. The only disappointing thing was learning that this is the only book he has narrated on Audible.

    If you are at all curious about this book, I can't imagine a better way to experience it than this.

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Eugene, OR, United States 04-12-13
    Richard Eugene, OR, United States 04-12-13 Member Since 2006
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    "Absolutely fantastic!"
    What did you love best about The Great Gatsby?

    Enchanting story told well.


    Any additional comments?

    Gyllenhaal's performance is enthralling. It draws you in. He changes his voice for each character, and doesn't sound ridiculous as the female characters. Fantastic!

    8 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elaine Wilkinson 05-18-14
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    "Great Audio Quality With Miscast Narrator"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I have much enjoyed Gyllenhaal's film performances and he's certainly someone I keep an eye on for movies I would enjoy. That being said I think he was sadly miscast as the Nick Caraway narrator. Gyllenhaal just isn't a period piece sort of guy. He's modern in every way, voice, inflection, tone, accent, and just not believable as a young man of the post-WWI era. Caraway is educated, sophisticated, knowledgeable. He may not have the ready wealth of the crowd he runs with, but he's certainly not out of place or uncomfortable in such "elevated" surroundings. He recognizes the trappings of large amounts of money as exactly that--trappings. It's the people and their characters which preoccupy him, not their stuff. The rube in the palace, in spite of his wealth and experience, is Gatsby himself. His money and its purchasing power is far too new for him to be taking it for granted. And this childlike enjoyment and appreciation is part of Gatsby's charm for Nick. Gyllenhaal's most successful characterization is Tom Buchanon, the boorish, foolish, philandering husband of Nick's cousin Daisy. Fitzgerald paints him in broad strokes, not quite a parody of the ex-jock, he's too destructive, too powerful to laugh at, but Tom is the modern one that Gyllenhaal "gets."


    What other book might you compare The Great Gatsby to and why?

    Fitzgerald's "voice" is easily recognizable and distinct from other early 20th century writers. Great Gatsby fans would love his other novels and short stories. He's poetic, but never obscure and sometimes humorous. An easy read with intense themes.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    Gyllenhaal is not a natural narrator, but he has a pleasant baritone and would probably improve if he continues in this work. The first chapter contained two stand-out mistakes in pronounciation: the word claret mispronounced as "klar-ay," rather than "klar-it," and the word settee mispronounced as "set-tay," rather than "sett-ee." Neither word is of French derivation, which I am assuming was Gyllenhaal's assumption. (Both words come from English and have a standard English pronounciation.) It's not so surprising that a young American actor doesn't have these words in his lexicon. What is surprising is that no one on the production/direction side of this recording caught the mistakes. Doesn't anyone "literary" audit these recordings before they're released? Now there's a plan.


    Was The Great Gatsby worth the listening time?

    In spite of my issues with this recording, I did not feel my money wasted. I got it at a very good price. Fans of Jake Gyllenhaal of the he-can't-put-a-foot-wrong stripe will love this.


    Any additional comments?

    The audio quality of this recording is very, very good.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John S MA 04-17-14
    John S MA 04-17-14 Member Since 2005

    Avid audible listener for over 10 years.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A classic that should be read."

    Regardless of whether this was a recent movie with Leonard DeCaprio or an audio book narrated by Jake Gyllenhaal, this an an all time classic. The writing is impeccable, with each paragraph and page expertly crafted. Although I loved the Audible version, this is a book that should be read, not listened to or watched on the big screen. It's a rather short book that exemplifies the power of the written word.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Silver Spring, MD, United States 03-04-14
    Amazon Customer Silver Spring, MD, United States 03-04-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Bummer Jake Gyllenhaal. I expected more."
    What did you like best about The Great Gatsby? What did you like least?

    What I like best is my memory of reading this book in high school. What I liked least? Jake G.'s reading. Mon.o.tone. Geeze louise, put some pep into it.


    Would you be willing to try another book from F. Scott Fitzgerald? Why or why not?

    Probably not. Not having much luck in revisiting the classics.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    He read in a boring monotone. I'm not quite sure why he felt like he had to read it like he did. Not much energy.


    Did The Great Gatsby inspire you to do anything?

    I stopped listening.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christy 09-04-13
    Christy 09-04-13
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    "Disappointed"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    This book was required reading in high school. I purchased it, since the new movie was coming out about it. I thought it was horrible! I liked the last two hours, but everything else was a waste of time.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara HOUSTON, TX, United States 08-28-13
    Barbara HOUSTON, TX, United States 08-28-13 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Stunned!"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    If they would have used another narrator.


    Has The Great Gatsby turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No


    How could the performance have been better?

    Wrong person for the job he just couldn't read the story.


    What character would you cut from The Great Gatsby?

    None, the book was not the problem, I love the book.


    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
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