Careless People: Murder, Mayhem, and the Invention of The Great GatsbyCareless People: Murder, Mayhem, and the Invention of The Great Gatsby by Sarah Churchwell
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What a marvellous read! This tripartite work is an immersion into the year 1922, taking the reader into the riotous Jazz Age, while also proceeding (in elegant synchrony) chapter by chapter through The Great Gatsby and following a high profile New Jersey murder case that would have captured the heart and mind of Fitzgerald. This meticulously researched book susses out sources of Gatsby’s diction, events, foundational themes and characters. It is a paean to the novel and one can’t help but delight in each parallel drawn from the lives of Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald. It’s also a train wreck teetering into the disillusionment that marks the last days of Jay Gatsby and the last years of the Fitzgeralds.

Highly recommended for fans of F. Scott Fitzgerald and The Great Gatsby. I haven’t had so much literary fun since reading Robert Adams’ Love of Reading lectures!

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