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This Side of Paradise: (Starbooks Classics Editions)
     

This Side of Paradise: (Starbooks Classics Editions)

3.9 93
by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Angie Zambrano (Illustrator)
 

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This Side of Paradise is the debut novel of F. Scott Fitzgerald. Published in 1920, and taking its title from a line of the Rupert Brooke poem Tiare Tahiti, the book examines the lives and morality of post-World War I youth. Its protagonist, Amory Blaine, is an attractive Princeton University student who dabbles in literature. The novel explores the theme of love

Overview

This Side of Paradise is the debut novel of F. Scott Fitzgerald. Published in 1920, and taking its title from a line of the Rupert Brooke poem Tiare Tahiti, the book examines the lives and morality of post-World War I youth. Its protagonist, Amory Blaine, is an attractive Princeton University student who dabbles in literature. The novel explores the theme of love warped by greed and status-seeking.

Background

In the summer of 1919, after less than a year of courtship, Zelda Sayre broke up with the 22-year-old Fitzgerald. After a summer of heavy alcohol use, he returned to St. Paul, Minnesota where his family lived, to complete the novel, hoping that if he became a successful novelist he could win Zelda back. While at Princeton, Fitzgerald had written an unpublished novel called The Romantic Egotist and ultimately 80 pages of the typescript of this earlier work ended up in This Side of Paradise.

On September 4, 1919, Fitzgerald gave the manuscript to a friend to deliver to Maxwell Perkins, an editor at Charles Scribner's Sons in New York. The book was nearly rejected by the editors at Scribners, but Perkins insisted, and on September 16 it was officially accepted. Fitzgerald begged for early publication-convinced that he would become a celebrity and impress Zelda-but was told that the novel would have to wait until the spring. Nevertheless, upon the acceptance of his novel for publication he went and visited Zelda and they resumed their courtship. His success imminent, she agreed to marry him.

Style

This Side of Paradise blends different styles of writing: at times a fictional narrative, at times free verse, sometimes narrative drama, interspersed with letters and poems from Amory. In fact the novel's odd blend of styles was the result of Fitzgerald cobbling his earlier attempt at a novel The Romantic Egotist together with assorted short stories and poems that he composed, but never published. The occasional switch from third person to second person gives the hint that the story is semi-autobiographic.

Critical reception

The book's critical success was driven in part by the enthusiasm of reviewers. Burton Rascoe of the Chicago Tribune wrote that "it bears the impress, it seems to me, of genius. It is the only adequate study that we have had of the contemporary American in adolescence and young manhood." H. L. Mencken wrote that This Side of Paradise was the "best American novel that I have seen of late."

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781500260491
Publisher:
CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date:
06/21/2014
Pages:
268
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.61(d)

Meet the Author

Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald (September 24, 1896 - December 21, 1940) was an American author of novels and short stories, whose works are the paradigmatic writings of the Jazz Age, a term he coined. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century. Fitzgerald is considered a member of the "Lost Generation" of the 1920s. He finished four novels: This Side of Paradise, The Beautiful and Damned, The Great Gatsby (his most famous), and Tender Is the Night. A fifth, unfinished novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon, was published posthumously. Fitzgerald also wrote many short stories that treat themes of youth and promise along with age and despair.

Fitzgerald's work has been adapted into films many times. His short story, "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button", was the basis for a 2008 film. Tender Is the Night was filmed in 1962, and made into a television miniseries in 1985. The Beautiful and Damned was filmed in 1922 and 2010. The Great Gatsby has been the basis for numerous films of the same name, spanning nearly 90 years; 1926, 1949, 1974, 2000, and 2013 adaptations. In addition, Fitzgerald's own life from 1937 to 1940 was dramatized in 1958 in Beloved Infidel.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
September 24, 1896
Date of Death:
December 21, 1940
Place of Birth:
St. Paul, Minnesota
Education:
Princeton University

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This side of paradise 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 93 reviews.
FStopFitz More than 1 year ago
I have read this inumerable times! My all time favorite book, especially by my favorite author. Never quite understood how The Great Gatsby can overshadow this amazing work of literature! The life of Amory Blaine is fascinating, following through his school days, the reader actually feels like they are there with him. Highly reccomended to anyone and everyone!
chelseanne23 More than 1 year ago
Fitzgerald's semi-autobiographical novel was utterly fascinating; as a 22 year old, I find it baffling that someone my age could have written such a cutting and spot-on description of everyday life. I could go into the fact that he was one of the first truly modern authors, how he is one of America's greatest authors, etc. but what I found most powerful was that his work is still relevant today. I've been in similar situations, I've felt the same way Amory felt (in relation to being better than everyone, in relation to "acting" at being into someone) which serves to highlight how timeless this novel truly is. I was captivated from start to end.
elizabeth alvarez More than 1 year ago
Download another version, this one has too many typos to be clearly understood.
billtolstoy More than 1 year ago
How presumptious of me to write a review of F.Scott Fitzgerald but in truth I think he would understand. Set in privileged, clueless ,dream-state Ivy League twenties America, Amory Blaine goes about his business of "let's pretend we really are intellectuals and see if we can squeeze a life out of that". Because Fitzgerald got me mad and maybe a little embarrassed too,(I was a college kid once)I realized,"This guy got it right and wrote it right too.." Hemingway might have shared my reaction to this novel and who knows, may have seen it as the basis for the famous exchange between himself and Fitzgerald;Fitzgerald,"The rich and the poor are different." Hemingway,"Yes,the rich have more money." That's how I concluded as well,self delusions are poison to a full true life, And they can hurt people and nations. Fitgerald was a master and did get it right,even if I didn't like his characters and their values,he got it right,and wrote it brilliantly. But thats only round one,this a fight,and far from over.Amory Blaine; his generation,dubbed"Le enfants purdue",(the lost generation),has lost,like his personal Catholic faith, all "the ornaments on the tree"but the tree lives,he wants the tree,wants to live,wants to change,wants to change the world.He teeters on the edge of socialism,"Every boy should have an equal start,not be falsely bolstered by money,or those hideous boarding schools,dragged through college."As had in fact ,Amory. He decries the shallowness of that education,goes on to say,and I paraphrase loosely,"I got an education despite having gone to college." Fitgerald can be frighteningly,poetically fierce.In a scene in a graveyard by Princeton, his alma mater,Amory is contemplating nature,Hamlet-like,he touches a vine growing on vault,"covered with late blooming,weepy,watery blue flowers that might have grown from dead eyes,sticky to the touch with a sickening odor." The exchange ,in a scene where Amory ,enduring hard personal changes in fortune, is offered a lift in a limo,and holds forth on the need for social change,is less poetic but not less powerful. Flappers aside,roaring twenties aside,this book is responsible,it lives,just as Amory wanted for himself finally.You know,I have to say it,"it was an education,really." And by a master.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is such a classic! In the first chapter, which is conveinently segregated into titled bits, I got this feeling of literary genius. I immediately got this groovy Catcher and the Rye sensation right when the main character, Amory Blaine, began an in depth analysis upon all his education. Amory Blaine is such an amazingly conceited and zealous character he thinks he is completely amazing when in reality he is a lazy optimist, this is where the reader picks up hillarious emotions that allow loud outbursts of laughter. I absolutely adore this novel what a feat from F. Scott Fitzgerald. I dare yell OUTSTANDING!
Guest More than 1 year ago
F. Scott Fitzgerald's picture of the 'jazz age' is not unlike much of today's more youthful generations. While this book is overshadowed by 'The Great Gatsby'it definitely should be read. It gives us a little insight to what the generation before WWI was up to before the depression and WWII.
Nazire More than 1 year ago
Fitzgerald is one of the staple writers of American Literature, especially for Modern American Literature. Fitzgerald is probably best known for his Beautiful and the Damned and The Great Gatsby, both of which are superb books. I feel like I am losing a sense of who I am by writing a review of a great writer here. Who am I to judge Fitzgerald in all his greatness and the skills he has mastered as a superb writer? I, who has not published anything is judging Fitzgerald's first novel. How pretentious? IF I am not wrong Fitzgerald wrote this book when he was in his early twenties and still inexperienced. However I feel that we must judge each book separately with it's own merits and not against other comparisons; whether it be against other writers or the other works of that particular writer. It is true there are some flaws with this book; but let's be honest, which book doesn't? There are no perfect books on which everyone will agree on. Everyone's best of classics will always be different. I however love this book. The characters are well designed and it reflects the 1920s through a young artist's eyes who is in the work of becoming one, though not yet one. The heartaches, the difficulties, mentalities and thought patters are carefully observed and presented, not always in the clearest way, however always there. Amory's awakening feels real, happening not in a fast paced story that seems to be based on too many coincidences. We don't just hit a wall and then a bulb doesn't go off in our heads. The influence of his parents, particularly of his mother, his religious mentor, his friends and the countless women who go in and out of his life. They all shape him separately in different directions in which his confusion becomes profound and relatable. Descriptions, monologues are enlightening, creative and original. No body does the Jazz era better than Fitzgerald, with hits glam and it's gloom. So, what was wrong with it? I don't think at any given time a student at Yale could be so carefree without having to work so hard at his studies. Sometimes the plot doesn't feel as established, solid and well planned out. There aren't always particularly something happening, or something being set up. (not that all plots needs to be this way, however for a novel of this length, sometimes it makes a reader feel like the writer is just dragging it on and is not authorized) to write the book. Some characters don't always seem to particularly have a purpose of being there. The book could have been shorter, the space utilized more efficiently. All in all though, it's a great book that is to be recommended.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When it was published someone famously called this book 'the collected writings of F. Scott Fitzgerald' and the wag who made the quip had a point. Still, it is a beautiful and interesting portrait of a priviledged and Romantic child's coming of age. The passages describing Princeton are the most lyrical. This book showed the world the potential Fitzgerald had for lyrical prose and writing fine novels, potential fulfilled in Gatsby and Tender is the Night.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is an amazing novel that is very selectively worded. Fitzgerald is a master of the written word, and he never wastes a single one.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read the Great Gatsby before This Side of Paradise and find it much more understandable and interesting. Overall, this book is much less confusing and the events are mostly in chronological order from the viewpoint of the protagnist, Amory Blain, instead of a characterized narrator. It's a thoughtful book and displays a whole new perspective on things. The time and society at the time is well presented as the main character experiences the triumphs and setbacks so far in his young life around centered around his own 'superior' ideas and ideals. Fitzgerald flowing and elegant writing give life to this book as it's most suitable to Amory Blain whom he most likely wrote autobiographically. It's interesting to go inside someone's head and explor how they think and perceive the world around them, how their ideas change and evolve, especially a romantic egotist's. The ending's a bit lose but it has impact, making you wish it for more while knowing it cannot be so. A fascinating book, yet tangible, it should be read before Great Gatsby which become more comprehensible after This Side of Paradise.
Anonymous 25 days ago
Looked around for their mentors
Anonymous 5 months ago
I call out the names of the new warriors and then I pad over to Swiftpaw "I promise l will make you the warrior you dream to be and more, Swiftpaw." I touch my nose to Swiftpaws
Anonymous 5 months ago
She puffs out her chest with pride. "I'll be dead before l give up on this clan."
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Go to res six and reapond to fireheart
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Followed him. "What are we doing here?"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
He looked at the stars across the borders.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a delight to read! ~*~A
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Huck was here. Now he is at fsteak res 1
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
And very much so includes that paris bunch of "lost" they seemed able to always find a drink
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Timey wimey.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She walks in, her blond hair pulled into an updo, and wears a silvery dress. Her eyes glitter, as she looks around. A small frown forms on her face when she realizes that everyone has a date. She sighs, and walks to the side.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago