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This Side of Paradise

by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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9,15484816 (3.58)1 / 168
  1. 10
    The Adventures of Augie March by Saul Bellow (CGlanovsky)
    CGlanovsky: Young men coming of age in different eras of 20th Century America.

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English (80)  Italian (1)  Hebrew (1)  Spanish (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (84)
Showing 1-5 of 80 (next | show all)
As the twentieth century emerges from its egg, Amory Blaine rises through prep school, Princeton, and Prohibition as he struggles to excavate his potential genius.

This Side of Paradise was Fitzgerald's first novel and was published when he was twenty-three. You don't need to check the flap copy for these details; they are self-evident within the book itself, which reads like every novel written by an infant author. Fitzgerald clearly believes he has hard-won artistic truths to impart to his audience, but he is not old enough to know any artistic truths worth knowing. Baby-faced Fitzgerald lacks a crucial level of critical distance from his equally baby-faced protagonist, and the protagonist's concluding epiphanies come off as tinny, facile, and unearned. In contrast, the first half of the book, dealing with the adolescent Amory, evidences a more dispassionate eye: young Amory is an autobiographical sketch drawn with both bile and compassion, and his natural egotism is shot through with self-loathing. ( )
  proustbot | Jun 19, 2023 |
Too much work. The poetry, and a play script section substituted for the narrative. I read it in a sense of obligation to Minnesota authors, including Sinclair Lewis, Bob Dylan, Garrison Keillor, Robert Bly, and by adoption Louise Erdrich. I pondered including this in my collection of Unfinished books.

But it saved it's reputation for me with these quotes:


'Here now', said the big man, 'you'll have to admit that the labouring man is certainly highly paid -- five- and six-hour days -- it's ridiculous. You can't buy an honest day's work from an man in the trades unions.'

'You've brought it on yourselves,' insisted Amory, 'You people never make concessions until they're wrung out of you'.

'What People?'

'Your class; the class I belonged to until recently; those who by inheritance or industry or brains or dishonesty have become the moneyed class.' ( )
  applemcg | Apr 26, 2023 |
Thank god that's over. ( )
  Chris.Wolak | Oct 13, 2022 |
A major theme in the novel is the disillusionment, or disappointment one feels as one grows older.
  laibasaleem | Sep 12, 2022 |
I actually liked this novel quite a bit. It's not as good as The Great Gatsby, but it's worth the read if you enjoyed Fitzgerald's writing style. This Side of Paradise is his first novel originally published in 1920 and like his other works it's semiautobiographical. Yet this isn't much like The Great Gatsby. I would like to compare the two, but there isn't much to compare.

I really like how Fitzgerald writes his characters. He gives them unique names (like Amory Blaine) and he has good character development. Maybe it's because they are based on real people, but they make great book characters. He really does capture what it's like to be an American with his characters too. We are mostly laid back, in need of having a good time, and we are always looking for a better life. In my opinion, Fitzgerald's characters are still contemporary compared to other authors of his time.

The first half of this novel was my favorite part. It's all about watching a boy become a man. Maybe I'm being biases with liking this part cause almost any man can relate to Amory. He might not be a likeable character, but I'll admit I care about my looks and who I am socially a lot of times. I think most men are a little egotistical with things we do during the day when you really stop and think about it all.

I didn't really care for the second part of the novel though. That's when it got a little boring for me and talk a little to much about politics of the time. The second part you might need footnotes or something to know what they are referencing. There is a part Amory is list a few authors he dislikes from that times and I only knew a couple. That was a funny part to read because he was saying how they are good writers, but none of them have actually wrote anything good. Here you got me from the 21st century not knowing these authors.

The other thing I really liked about this novel was the fact it was more experimental then I thought. Wasn't even aware Fitzgerald wrote experimental stuff before. This is experimental because it's a novel but at one point you are reading a play, a letter, and a poem. This showed to me that Fitzgerald was interested in writing multiple genres and not just a basic novel. Makes for a good first book I guess.

I still think after reading this that Fitzgerald is a great American novelist, if not the best. As I said before he does an awesome job capturing what it means to be an American and his characters are still contemporary. Tons of young readers are still picking up the Great Gatsby and falling in love like it's a brand new book. After reading This Side of Paradise, you can see that that book was the start of some more grand coming form Fitzgerald's mind. ( )
  Ghost_Boy | Aug 25, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 80 (next | show all)
"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."
added by GYKM | editChicago Tribune, Burton Rascoe
"The glorious spirit of abounding youth glows throughout this fascinating tale. . . The whole story is disconnected, more or less, but loses none of its charm on that account. It could have been written only by an artist who knows how to balance his values, plus a delightful literary style."
added by GYKM | editNew York Times (May 9, 1920)

» Add other authors (116 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
F. Scott Fitzgeraldprimary authorall editionscalculated
Carson, Sharon G.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dean, DawkinsNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dean, RobertsonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hendrie, ChrisNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hill, DickNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hughes, ChrisNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Klau├čner, BurghartNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
McCallion, DavidNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moore, C JamesNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Smith, Mark F.Narratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Woodman, JeffNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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. . . Well this side of Paradise! . . .
There's little comfort in the wise.
---Rupert Brooks

Experience is the name so many people give to their mistakes.
---Oscar Wilde
First words
Amory Blaine inherited from his mother every trait, except the stray inexpressible few, that made him worth while.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Legacy Library: F. Scott Fitzgerald

F. Scott Fitzgerald has a Legacy Library. Legacy libraries are the personal libraries of famous readers, entered by LibraryThing members from the Legacy Libraries group.

See F. Scott Fitzgerald's legacy profile.

See F. Scott Fitzgerald's author page.

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Average: (3.58)
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1.5 6
2 89
2.5 27
3 344
3.5 71
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4.5 24
5 202

Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141185570, 014119409X

Tantor Media

An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.

» Publisher information page

Urban Romantics

2 editions of this book were published by Urban Romantics.

Editions: 190967673X, 1909676748


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