Are You a Gatsby Fan?

Are You a Gatsby Fan?

Happy Birthday F. Scott Fitzgerald!

Are you a Gatsby Fan?

Are you a Gatsby Fan? Learn About the Author Behind the Book!

September 24th is F. Scott Fitzgerald’s birthday! Anyone who knows me knows I’m a huge Gatsby fan. This was actually one of the first things my husband and I bonded over. We even had a Great Gatsby-themed wedding, and well anyone who follows my social media knows my yellow furry friend- Gatsby 🙂

Some have questioned why I’m drawn to such a supposedly depressing book or why we’d choose to highlight our happiest day with a theme that ended in such catastrophe. But what I tell any of those people is I strongly believe both the novel and Fitzgerald himself were tragically misunderstood.

Fitzgerald took to writing at a young age. He was published for the first time at thirteen. He continued writing short stories and plays to the point of neglecting his studies at Princeton and soon found himself failing his classes and unlikely to graduate.

Fitzgerald joined the Army in 1917. Convinced he would die in war, he wanted to leave a piece of himself behind, so he rapidly wrote his first novel, The Romantic Egoist, which later became, This Side of Paradise.

It took years to bring This Side of Paradise to publication. However, when it did publish, it literally made him famous overnight.

By this point, Fitzgerald had also made a name for himself, writing short stories for magazines. He was fully supporting himself with his writing. It was his dream come true, followed by his long-time love, Zelda Sayre, finally agreeing to marry him.


They married in March of 1920 and began what became known as a famously tumultuous marriage. They traveled the world and lived an extravagant lifestyle while often leaving chaos in their wake.

Fitzgerald wanted to be taken seriously in the literary world; however, his drinking, partying ways, and chaotic marriage damaged his reputation with critics. They began to dismiss him as irresponsible and a flaky writer. This, however, was far from the truth. Although Fitzgerald was definitely an alcoholic, he always wrote soberly and was a critical perfectionist. He belabored overdrafts, revising each line until he deemed it perfect.

Despite critics’ opinions of him as derelict or irresponsible, or perhaps because of it–– Fitzgerald’s name soon became synonymous with the Jazz Age in which he lived. He embraced this and even wrote about it in his novel, Echoes of the Jazz Age.

Fitzgerald’s writing mirrored his personal life in other ways as well. His characters often possessed his idealistic, romantic soul. They were also often seeking the American dream, striving for something better. However, they were often plagued as Fitzgerald himself was, with a lack of control and loss.

Like his charactersFitzgerald continued to strive for more-– constantly chasing his next dream-– to write for Broadway, to write for Hollywood. He attempted both of these and yet, never fulfilled the opportunities the way he envisioned. Much of this was due to his drinking and inability to handle his finances. He and Zelda always burned through money faster than he could make it. Zelda also suffered from mental health issues and was eventually hospitalized in a care facility.

Fitzgerald’s last unfinished novel, The Last Tycoon, again mirrored many of his beliefs about his own life. Fitzgerald, unfortunately, passed away from a heart attack before finishing the novel and died believing himself a failure wasting away in literary obscurity. Indeed, for years, that did appear to be the case. However, somewhere in the late 1940s, his work went through a “resurgence” period until he was solidified in 1960 as an enduring American writer. So much so that his novel, The Great Gatsby, has been listed most often as a novel that defines an American classic.

I’ve always felt that Fitzgerald’s writing, The Great Gatsby, in particular, is one of those books that needs to be read more than once. It needs to be unpacked for the multiple layers that are there. Fitzgerald was a master at symbolism, and his themes do withstand the test of time. After all, aren’t we still obsessed with status and money? Will unrequited love ever go away? Or sadly, even the treatment and lack of choices for women is still an issue today.

What are your thoughts on Fitzgerald? Literary classic? Idealistic waste? Have you read any of his other novels aside from The Great Gatsby?

Have you read any of Fitzgerald’s other books? Check out my Fitzgerald Book List Below!

This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald

This Side of Paradise is the debut novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald, published in 1920. The book examines the lives and morality of post–World War I youth. Its protagonist Amory Blaine is an attractive student at Princeton University who dabbles in literature.

The novel explores the theme of love warped by greed and status seeking, and takes its title from a line of Rupert Brooke’s poem Tiare Tahiti. The novel famously helped F. Scott Fitzgerald gain Zelda Sayre’s hand in marriage; its publication was her condition of acceptance.

A True Classic that Belongs on Every Bookshelf!


It’s title taken from John Keats’s ‘Ode to a Nightingale’, Tender is the Night (1934) is Fitzgerald’s best-known and most widely read novel after The Great Gatsby. Fitzgerald actually considered Tender is the Night to be his greatest novel. It was his fourth novel, and the last novel he completed before his death in 1940.

Set in the south of France in the late 1920s, Tender Is the Night is the tragic tale of a young actress, Rosemary Hoyt, and her complicated relationship with the alluring American couple Dick and Nicole Diver. A brilliant psychiatrist at the time of his marriage, Dick is both husband and doctor to Nicole, whose wealth pushed him into a glamorous lifestyle, and whose growing strength highlights Dick’s decline.

Lyrical, expansive, and hauntingly evocative, Tender Is the Night was one of the most talked-about books of the year when it was originally published in 1934, and is even more beloved by readers today.

Are you a Gatsby Fan?

Are you a Gatsby Fan?

This is probably Fitzgerald’s best-known short story, especially since it was made into a movie in 2008 by David Fincher, with Brad Pitt in the starring role. 

Although better known today for his novels, in the 1920s F. Scott Fitzgerald ranked among the top writers of magazine fiction. Fitzgerald represented the dreams and aspirations of the post-World War I generation in his life as well as his works. With his glamorous wife, Zelda, and his cosmopolitan social circle, he projected the perfect image for narrating tales of restless youth in a hectic world.

These short stories offer insights into many themes, characters, and techniques that emerged in Fitzgerald’s later works. The title tale, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” reflects his preoccupation with life’s fleeting nature. “Winter Dreams,” written three years before The Great Gatsby, shares the concept of commitment to an idealized dream. “Babes in the Woods,” developed during the author’s Princeton days, evidences the roots of This Side of Paradise. Thirteen other selections offer further insights into the author’s growing skills as well as examples of his sparkling prose, understated wit, and deft characterizations.


Are you a Gatsby Fan? Then you also need to check out this more recent retelling of the famous tale-

“Jillian Cantor beautifully re-crafts an American classic in Beautiful Little Fools, placing the women of The Great Gatsby center stage: more than merely beautiful, not so little as the men in their lives assume, and certainly far from foolish. Both fresh and familiar, this page-turner is one to savor!” —Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Rose Code

“Jillian Cantor’s shifting kaleidoscope of female perspectives makes F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic tale of Jazz Age longing and lust feel utterly modern. A breathtaking accomplishment.”—Fiona Davis, New York Times bestselling author of The Lions of Fifth Avenue 

Are you a Gatsby Fan?

On a sultry August day in 1922, Jay Gatsby is shot dead in his West Egg swimming pool. To the police, it appears to be an open-and-shut case of murder/suicide when the body of George Wilson, a local mechanic, is found in the woods nearby.

Then a diamond hairpin is discovered in the bushes by the pool, and three women fall under suspicion. Each holds a key that can unlock the truth to the mysterious life and death of this enigmatic millionaire. 

Daisy Buchanan once thought she might marry Gatsby—before her family was torn apart by an unspeakable tragedy that sent her into the arms of the philandering Tom Buchanan.

Jordan Baker, Daisy’s best friend, guards a secret that derailed her promising golf career and threatens to ruin her friendship with Daisy as well.

Catherine McCoy, a suffragette, fights for women’s freedom and independence, and especially for her sister, Myrtle Wilson, who’s trapped in a terrible marriage.

Their stories unfold in the years leading up to that fateful summer of 1922, when all three of their lives are on the brink of unraveling. Each woman is pulled deeper into Jay Gatsby’s romantic obsession, with devastating consequences for all of them.

Jillian Cantor revisits the glittering Jazz Age world of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, retelling this timeless American classic from the women’s perspective. Beautiful Little Fools is a quintessential tale of money and power, marriage and friendship, love and desire, and ultimately the murder of a man tormented by the past and driven by a destructive longing that can never be fulfilled.

Hope you enjoyed and found some new good reads to try! If you enjoy getting new book recommendations, make sure you check out my other Book Lists Here!

Agatha Christie Books

Agatha Christie Books

Happy Birthday to the Queen of Mystery!

About Agatha Christie and Her Books

Murder on the Orient Express, And Then There Were None, these are some of the most classic mysteries ever written. And who hasn’t heard of the famous Hercule Poirot or Miss Marple? Agatha Christie books are legendary, as is the author herself. Is that what has made her pop up so much again now in new recent writings?

Born on September 15th in 1890, Agatha Christie became and remains the best-selling novelist of all time. She was a prolific writer, writing 66 detective novels, 14 short story collections, and the world’s longest running play of all time, The Mousetrap

Agatha Christie Books

Agatha Christie had a difficult start in life. She had an unorthodox upbringing where she was homeschooled and told she was not allowed to learn to read until she was at least eight years old. She taught herself at the age of five instead. Her father died when she was eleven and she and her mother were left with major financial problems. They were forced to leave their house relying on the hospitality of friends until eventually traveling to Egypt for Agatha’s “economized” coming out season.

Although Agatha received many marriage proposals in Egypt, it was not until she met a young pilot, Archie Christie, that she first fell in love. It was a whirlwind affair that ended in a wartime marriage.

It was during the war that Agatha took to writing detective stories. She used her newfound experience in poisons (she worked at a hospital dispensary during the war) as a basis for the plot of her debut novel,The Mysterious Affair at Styles. The murderer’s use of poisons in the book was so accurate that she received an unusual honorable tribute- a review in The Pharmaceutical Journal. 

Despite Agatha’s newfound success, her personal life was in shambles. Her marriage was falling apart, and there were rumors of a nervous breakdown. After a mysterious disappearance, Agatha decided it was time to start anew. She fulfilled a lifelong goal of traveling on the Orient Express, and spent time on an archeological dig in Baghdad. It was there she met a young archeologist in training, Max Mallowan, who became her second husband. 

In the years that followed, Agatha finally found happiness. She and her husband divided their time between England and digs around the world. She devoted her time to writing, enjoying success until her death in 1976.


Agatha Christie Books To Read List

And Then There Were None


“If you’re one of the few who haven’t experienced the genius of Agatha Christie, this novel is a stellar starting point.” — DAVID BALDACCI, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author

An exclusive authorized edition of the most famous and beloved stories from the Queen of Mystery.

Ten people, each with something to hide and something to fear, are invited to an isolated mansion on Indian Island by a host who, surprisingly, fails to appear. On the island, they are cut off from everything but each other and the inescapable shadows of their own past lives. One by one, the guests share the darkest secrets of their wicked pasts. And one by one, they die…

Which among them is the killer, and will any of them survive?

“Agatha Christie is the gateway drug to crime fiction both for readers and for writers. . . .  Just one book is never enough.” — VAL MCDERMID, Internationally Bestselling Author.

Agatha Christie Books

Agatha Christie Books

Murder on the Orient Express: A Hercule Poirot Mystery 

The exclusive authorized edition of the most widely read mystery of all time. Now a major motion picture directed by and starring Kenneth Branagh. 

“The murderer is with us—on the train now . . .”

Just after midnight, the famous Orient Express is stopped in its tracks by a snowdrift. By morning, the millionaire Samuel Edward Ratchett lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. Without a shred of doubt, one of his fellow passengers is the murderer.

Isolated by the storm, detective Hercule Poirot must find the killer among a dozen of the dead man’s enemies before the murderer decides to strike again.

This edition includes a photo insert of images from the film. 


The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (Hercule Poirot)

One of Agatha Christie’s most famous novels, featuring her beloved detective Hercule Poirot—and her most surprising twist.

The story that made Agatha Christie famous ends with one of her most dramatic twists. The villagers of King’s Abbot are shocked when a wealthy local widow commits suicide, and the very next day her fiancé, Roger Ackroyd, is stabbed to death. Dr. James Sheppard, the local physician, discovers the body of his friend and narrates the ensuing hunt for the killer. All the guests and staff at Ackroyd’s country house seem to have solid alibis—except for his missing stepson. But as the authorities home in on their most obvious suspect, the recently retired detective Hercule Poirot unexpectedly turns up and joins the fray. Dr. Sheppard gamely assists the legendary Poirot as he untangles one of the most fiendish mysteries in Christie’s extensive oeuvre.


The A. B. C. Murders: A Hercule Poirot Mystery

In this official authorized edition from the Queen of Mystery, Hercule Poirot sets out on the trail of a serial killer.

There’s a serial killer on the loose, working his way through the alphabet and the whole country is in a state of panic.

A is for Mrs. Ascher in Andover, B is for Betty Barnard in Bexhill, and C is for Sir Carmichael Clarke in Churston. With each murder, the killer is getting more confident—but leaving a trail of deliberate clues to taunt the proud Hercule Poirot might just prove to be the first and fatal mistake.

FYI: This was the first novel ever to follow the trail of a serial killer in a “whodunnit” mystery.


Sleeping Murder

In this exclusive authorized edition from the Queen of Mystery, the indomitable Miss Marple turns ghost hunter and uncovers shocking evidence of a perfect crime.

Soon after Gwenda moved into her new home, odd things started to happen. Despite her best efforts to modernize the house, she only succeeded in dredging up its past. Worse, she felt an irrational sense of terror every time she climbed the stairs.

In fear, Gwenda turned to Miss Marple to exorcise her ghosts. Between them, they were to solve a “perfect” crime committed many years before.


More Recent books about Agatha Christie-

The Mystery of Mrs. Christie by Marie Benedict

THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES AND USA TODAY BESTSELLER!

AN AMAZON BEST BOOK OF 2021!

“A stunning story… The ending is ingenious, and it’s possible that Benedict has brought to life the most plausible explanation for why Christie disappeared for 11 days in 1926.”―The Washington Post.

The New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of The Only Woman in the Room returns with a thrilling reconstruction of one of the most notorious events in literary history: Agatha Christie’s mysterious 11-day disappearance in 1926.

In December 1926, Agatha Christie goes missing. Investigators find her empty car on the edge of a deep, gloomy pond, the only clues are some tire tracks nearby and a fur coat left in the car―strange for a frigid night. Her World War I veteran husband and her daughter have no knowledge of her whereabouts, and England unleashes an unprecedented manhunt to find the up-and-coming mystery author. Eleven days later, she reappears, just as mysteriously as she disappeared, claiming amnesia and providing no explanations for her time away.

The puzzle of those missing eleven days has persisted. With her trademark historical fiction exploration into the shadows of the past, acclaimed author Marie Benedict brings us into the world of Agatha Christie, imagining why such a brilliant woman would find herself at the center of such murky historical mysteries.

What is real, and what is mystery? What role did her unfaithful husband play, and what was he not telling investigators?

Agatha Christie novels have withstood the test of time due in no small part to Christie’s masterful storytelling and clever mind that may never be matched, but Agatha Christie’s untold history offers perhaps her greatest mystery of all.

Fans of The Secrets We Kept, The Lions of Fifth Avenue, and The Alice Network will enjoy this riveting saga of literary history, suspense, and love gone wrong.


The Christie Affair by Nina De Gramont

Why would the world’s most famous mystery writer disappear for eleven days? What makes a woman desperate enough to destroy another woman’s marriage? How deeply can a person crave revenge?

“Sizzles from its first sentence.” – The Wall Street Journal

A Reese’s Book Club Pick

In 1925, Miss Nan O’Dea infiltrated the wealthy, rarefied world of author Agatha Christie and her husband, Archie. In every way, she became a part of their life––first, both Christies. Then, just Archie. Soon, Nan became Archie’s mistress, luring him away from his devoted wife, desperate to marry him. Nan’s plot didn’t begin the day she met Archie and Agatha.

It began decades before, in Ireland, when Nan was a young girl. She and the man she loved were a star-crossed couple who were destined to be together––until the Great War, a pandemic, and shameful secrets tore them apart. Then acts of unspeakable cruelty kept them separated.

What drives someone to murder? What will someone do in the name of love? What kind of crime can someone never forgive? Nina de Gramont’s brilliant, unforgettable novel explores these questions and more.


Hope you enjoy this list of Agatha Christie Books! For more of my book lists, check out the Book List page here!

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