Have I read this before: Nope! I’ve read all of Fitzgerald’s other “big” stories, but not this one for some reason.
Review: Well, it’s no Gatsby, but few things are. It’s no This Side of Paradise, either. But it precedes Gatsby, so I guess if it had any role in Fitzgerald’s penning of that novel, I can be down with it (The Great Gatsby is one of my absolute favorite books, in case you were unware).
ANYWAY. If Fitzgerald’s goal with this story was to produce two of the most unlikeable characters ever in Anthony and Gloria, mission accomplished. I don’t know if it’s because the book I read just before this one was All Quiet on the Western Front, which provided an incredibly detailed description of what it was like on the German front lines of WWI, but reading about these two selfish, self-absorbed, entitled bratty adults complain about everything was super grating. Especially Anthony’s “joining the army” for WWI and not having to leave the US at all before the war ended but still using his military “history” to gain praise, sympathy, and admiration.
I’ve read that part of the reason this story was a little over-done and over-written was because Fitzgerald was still coming off the high of the success of This Side of Paradise and felt like anything he wrote would be that big of a success. I’m not sure if that’s true, but I could believe it.
Favorite part: I don’t know if I have one. I was basically rooting for bad things to happen to Anthony and Gloria by the end. They were pretty unbearable, haha.