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This Side of Paradise

Fitzgerald, F. Scott (Book - 2009 )
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
This Side of Paradise
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'to write it took three months; to conceive it - three minutes; to collect the data in it - all my life' F. Scott Fitzgerald's first novel, This Side of Paradise tells the story of Amory Blaine as he grows from pampered childhood to young adulthood, and learns to know himself better. At Princeton he becomes a literary aesthete and makes friends with other aspiring writers. As he moves out into the world and tries to find his true direction he falls in love with a succession of beautiful young women. Youthful exuberance and immaturity give way to disillusion and disappointment as Amory confronts the realities of life. A thinly disguised account of Fitzgerald's own Princeton years, the novel's frank description of Amory's love affairs shocked and delighted its first readers, and the book was an immediate success. Brilliant and original in style and structure, it was a spectacular launching for Fitzgerald's career, and instantly stamped him as the bard of the Jazz Age.
Authors: Fitzgerald, F. Scott (Francis Scott), 1896-1940
Title: This side of paradise
Publisher: Oxford [England] ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2009
Characteristics: xxxviii, 251 p. ;,20 cm
Statement of Responsibility: F. Scott Fitzgerald ; edited with an introduction and notes by Jackson R. Bryer
Additional Contributors: Bryer, Jackson R.
ISBN: 9780199546213
0199546215
Branch Call Number: FICTION FITZGERAL 2009
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references (p. [xxvix]-xxxiv)
Subject Headings: World War, 1914-1918 Veterans Fiction Children of the rich Fiction College students Fiction Advertising Fiction Young men Fiction
Genre/Form: Bildungsromans
Love stories
Topical Term: World War, 1914-1918
Children of the rich
College students
Advertising
Young men
LCCN: 2009029696
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Brilliant and original in style and structure, it was a spectacular launching for Fitzgerald's career, and instantly stamped him as the bard of the Jazz Age.


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This book is worth the read as an early glimpse of the author, and his narrative. When I first went to college I pulled out a sheet of loose leaf, and mapped out eight perfect semesters. Life deviates in strange ways. Having illuminated his emergence F. Scott Fitzgerald spilled more of the beans than I suspect he would have cared to further on down the road based on my limited knowledge of his treatment of his emergence later in his career. Cliché as it sounds, this is also true: the odometer alone does not define the journey; the paths taken counts for much. He is spoken of, and his work recreated as cinema still to this day, but are the inheritors of his mentors dreams proud of the body of his work, and the criticisms? Much effort was expended staking this young man on his literary journey. In the first hundred pages he drops character examinations with his typical sly wit, and then he tortures himself. Then he walks out on thin ice, and survives. If you've ever been in the position to write something on any of the empty, or partially scribbled on leaves of paper that can confront us, and wondered what will happen to them, this is one of the better literary journey at a start books out there. If you haven't, it is still a good read, though you might not recognize the struggle.

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Amory Blaine grows from a indulged child to a mature adult, living through prep schools, Princeton, love affairs and World War I.

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