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The Gatsby Affair: Scott, Zelda, and the…
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The Gatsby Affair: Scott, Zelda, and the Betrayal that Shaped an American…

by Kendall Taylor

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1111,255,504 (3.5)None
The romance between F. Scott Fitzgerald and Zelda Sayre has been celebrated as one of the greatest of the 20th century. From the beginning, their relationship was a tumultuous one, in which the couple's excesses were as widely known as their passion for each other. Despite their love, both Scott and Zelda engaged in flirtations that threatened to tear the couple apart. But none had a more profound impact on the two--and on Scott's writing--as the liaison between Zelda and a French aviator, Edouard Jozan. Though other biographies have written of Jozan as one of Scott's romantic rivals, accounts of the pilot's effect on the couple have been superficial at best. In The Gatsby Affair: Scott, Zelda, and the Betrayal That Shaped an American Classic, Kendall Taylor examines the dalliance between the southern belle and the French pilot from a fresh perspective. Drawing on conversations and correspondence with Jozan's daughter, as well as materials from the Jozan family archives, Taylor sheds new light on this romantic triangle. More than just a casual fling, Zelda's tryst with Edouard affected Scott as much as it did his wife--and ultimately influenced the author's most famous creation, Jay Gatsby. Were it not for Zelda's affair with the pilot, Scott's novel might be less about betrayal and more about lost illusions. Exploring the private motives of these public figures, Taylor offers new explanations for their behavior. In addition to the love triangle that included Jozan, Taylor also delves into an earlier event in Zelda's life--a sexual assault she suffered as a teenager--one that affected her future relationships. Both a literary study and a probing look at an iconic couple's psychological makeup, The Gatsby Affair offers readers a bold interpretation of how one of America's greatest novels was influenced.… (more)

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3.5 I've never read a biography of either of the Fitzgeralds. What I know about them comes from various eotkd of fiction, either by or about them, do this provided me with much information I did not know. I knew Scott was an alcoholic, that Zelda was wild, and that she had mental problems, also that they both died very young. So reading that Scott was as wild as Zelda, was partly or maybe more so responsible for Zelda's mental state, and that their marriage was not a great love story. In fact, they were not good for each other, poisonous may be more accurate. Felt so for their poor daughter. Also never knew how much of their life, Zelda's words, Scott put into his fiction.

Coming across the name Bleuler again was another one of those strange book coincidence, I seem to be running into more and more lately. I had never heard of this learned man of psychiatry until I recently encountered his name in the book , Inkspots. All the leading men of the time tried to treat Zelda at one time or another. I came away from this book, with a deep sympathy for Zelda, of course one could tell the author also felt for her. She was so lost, so young, and didn't have anyone to as ctually guide her.

Whenever I read books featuring The greats from the jazz Age, I am always amazed at the prodigious amounts of alcohol they consumed. How they moved from place to place, traveling everywhere, constantly broke. It is amazing that they managed to pen many of the books we now call classics. This book was well put together, interesting yet easy to read, not exactly narrative style, but I never found it dry. A very informative look at this time and the two people who live on in their books.

ARC from Netgalley. ( )
  Beamis12 | Sep 8, 2018 |
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