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Tales of the Jazz Age (Collins Classics)
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  4. Tales of the Jazz Age, Collins Classics by F. Scott Fitzgerald | | Booktopia
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Apart from the famous short about ole' Benny there is nothing here to write home about. The acclaim for F. Scott Fitzgerald is overrated, the skill of the pen does not exist. Two books, two failures and no amount of telling me what I am misssing will convince me to read anymore of this third-rate writer. Awful, just awful. Two stars for the story of Ben. Yes my kind bookshop gave me a refund. File under c for Murakami That's c for crap. Overall Rating: 4. If I'm going to be a Fitzgerald purist which, admittedly, I am , I take issue with the fact that the Penguin Hardback Classics edition I read, though gorgeous, does not contain the Overall Rating: 4.


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If I'm going to be a Fitzgerald purist which, admittedly, I am , I take issue with the fact that the Penguin Hardback Classics edition I read, though gorgeous, does not contain the full contents of the original short story collection entitled Tales of the Jazz Age which Fitzgerald published in Whilst I would highly recommend this edition as an introduction to Fitzgerald's short story writing because the selection is absolutely stellar although I will never understand HOW 'The Diamond as Big as the Ritz' was omitted , I think it should be clarified that this is not reflective of any publication that Fitzgerald himself ever made.

If you wish to read the original Tales of the Jazz Age, complete with the author's charming notes on each individual story, I recommend the cheap-and-cheerful Collins Classics edition entitled The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and Tales of the Jazz Age. It may not be as pretty as this edition, but it has 'The Diamond as Big as the Ritz' and 'Porcelain and Pink' in it, so that really doesn't matter. I shall now get down from off of my soap box and talk about what I DID like about this deceptive but wonderful collection of short stories.

This is a fine selection of some of the greatest highlights of Fitzgerald's early career, and it makes for a wonderful introduction to this author. I question some of the inclusions - 'The Four Fists' is decidedly meh amongst the other stories, and I don't believe that 'O Russet Witch' should have been chosen ahead of other notable Tales of the Jazz Age - but thematically and in terms of length these choices are sound.

There's magical realism and light fantasy, there's flappers and philosophers, there's young love and premature death, there's dreams and reality, there's parties and riots These eight stories cover a wide range of topics and remain utterly identifiable even when read back-to-back. They're all so beautifully written and achingly romantic too.

Fitzgerald disliked much of his short story writing, but I'm very much endeared by it. The selection of what is arguably the best of the best in this edition will surely lead many others to feel the same. Of the eight stories in here, I'd read exactly half before - the four from the original Tales of the Jazz Age. It's so beautiful and poetic and it's incredibly sad, yet it maintains a hopeful quality throughout which, in a way, makes it all the more painful.

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That story is just an utter joy. So clever and thoughtful, yet also so funny and enjoyable. It was even better second time around than it was the first, and that is testament to just how utterly wonderful it is. My opinion on 'O Russet Witch' also improved second time around, although I still wouldn't call it a favourite.

And 'May Day' I really want to love 'May Day', and both times that I've read it I've been absolutely captivated by its beginning, but I just find it far longer than necessary. It loses it momentum about halfway, which is a shame because there's some real quality in there. All of these stories are very good stories though, and I got just as much - if not more - out of them the second time as I did the first. It's just so clever?

ISBN 13: 9780007925506

And the twist at the end is so unexpected? It made me laugh aloud but also made me want to squeal with joy. It's such an endearing, lovely story and I'm glad to have read it at last. Again, the ending completely got to me, making me gasp aloud a little bit and read it over again. I particularly liked the ending again! In comparison with the rest of these, 'The Four Fists' was very disappointing. It's been a little while since I read it now and I'm struggling to recall much of what happened in it.

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I didn't dislike it - not by any means - but it was by far the weakest of the collection for me. Overall, though, I was impressed by these new-to-me stories, and I'll be sure to read the rest of Flappers and Philosophers one day to see how it compares. All things considered, reading this book was a wonderful experience.

Despite my rather pretentious complainants at the beginning of this review, I do think that this edition is worthwhile because it showcases Fitzgerald at his story writing best.

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Admittedly, a lot of these stories are slow on the build-up and that sometimes detracts from their quality, but no one is claiming that this man is the greatest short story writer of all time. He's primarily known for his novels for a reason. However, I believe that his stories are definitely still worth reading, and seven of these eight definitely come recommended by me.

Plus, the Penguin Hardback Classics edition of this book is absolutely stunning. When you look at it that way, is there really any reason not to read it? Finding The Great Gatsby somewhat underwhelming, I didn't really have many expectations either way with this book, an earlier anthology of short stories written by Fitzgerald during his earlier life.


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Overall, they range from plain weird Yemina, the Mountain Girl , through to okay but far from satisfying Tarquin of Cheapside to quite profoundly excellent as with two of my favorites: Benjamin Button and The Lees of Happiness. Contrary to the sometimes depressing superficiality of his most fam Finding The Great Gatsby somewhat underwhelming, I didn't really have many expectations either way with this book, an earlier anthology of short stories written by Fitzgerald during his earlier life.

Contrary to the sometimes depressing superficiality of his most famous novel, Fitzgerald displays here a vastly imaginative and erudite talent in storytelling. The two stories I mentioned liking before - along with May Day , which I found strangely reminiscent of Ulysses - make this book a pleasure worth reading, with only the occasional weaker moment coming by but hardly outstaying its welcome anyway.

This is rather a mixed bunch of Fitzgerald's early short stories. I preferred the tragi-comic ones where he combines the crazy whirl of the Jazz Age with the poignant sense of lost youth and innocence - for example, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button or the brilliantly understated The Lees of Happiness. Some of the other sketches and stories are less satisfying, especially those where the satire seems quite heavy handed. Interesting as an introduction to the themes and ideas that Fitzgerald This is rather a mixed bunch of Fitzgerald's early short stories.

Interesting as an introduction to the themes and ideas that Fitzgerald developed further in his novels, and I particularly liked the presentation of my Alma Classics edition, which has photographs, extensive notes and a delightful cover. It's been over a decade since I've read anything by F. Scott Fitzgerald and I had forgotten how much I enjoy him. Not every story in this collection is brilliant, in fact, the table of contents is fairly self-deprecating with a brief write-up by Fitzgerald about the story and where it was initially published.

But when the stories are good, I don't want them to end. He can set a scene and dialogue beautifully and makes you feel like part of the story, only to hit you with something wonderfully ab It's been over a decade since I've read anything by F. He can set a scene and dialogue beautifully and makes you feel like part of the story, only to hit you with something wonderfully absurd to stir up your enchantment.

I don't know why I waited so long to revisit F. Scott Fitzgerald, but I won't wait another decade to do it again. Sep 29, E. Fitzgerald observes the world from a sweet spot no other writer can find. He's close enough to maintain warmth, honesty, and intimacy with his characters, but just far enough away that he renders their imperfections, and the ugliness of the world they live in, without disdain. He's the long-ago friend who gently preserves the memory of everything good about the past without turning his cheek to the present.

The final short story in the collection, The Lees of Happiness, is particularly poignant. I really enjoyed this side of Fitzgerald, which is a little more light-hearted than his full-length novel output. While I didn't dislike his fantasy tales Diamond As Big As Ritz, Benjamin Button I found them too jarring set against his more timely Twenties stories, the dynamics being so different they almost seemed at odds with each other.

But all in all, this is a great introduction to the strange world of F. Jan 18, Karen rated it really liked it. I really enjoyed this collection and liked seeing Fitzgerald's range as a writer. The new love words, the tendernesses learned, are treasured up for the next lover. Basically everything F. Scott Fitzgerald has written is pure gold.

It took me a long time to finish because I read one short story at a time, and didn't want the book to end because every story is written so beautifully. I Loved It! This just didn't do it for me. There are a couple of great stories Benjamin Button, The Diamond as big as the Ritz , but the rest left me underwhelmed. Jan 24, Holly rated it it was ok. Only a few gems in here. Benjamin Button of course stands out. Not my favorite of his collected short works though. While, in my opinion, 'Tales of the Jazz Age' does not offer as good a selection as 'Flappers and Philosophers' , even though it is more varied, 'Tales of the Jazz Age' is still an entertaining and an illuminating read; which is characteristic of Fitzgerald.

However, the remaining few stories which I did not mention, while amusing, do lack any sort of epic grandeur.

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Fitzgerald credits, for the first time, his wife, Zelda Sayre, as being his collaborator in the crap-shooting scene. As a story which focuses on the Southern perspective, it retains some interest, especially to the student of English literature, but that's about it. The sham-marriage plot-twist provides a humorous dynamic to the story, while Fitzgerald states "that the camel part of the story is literally true," therefore accentuating the story's appeal.

Very interesting. Nevertheless, most critics and readers generally agree on one thing, that it ranks among the best Fitzgerald has penned even if they did not necessarily like it. Confused much? Well, I found this piece of criticism to sum up all the flaws and merits of 'May Day' perfectly: "a discordant piece that captures the silliness and pathos, the banality and vitality of the Jazz Age, whose opening it heralds and dramatizes. However, that sort of eccentricity is what really made Fitzgerald the writer we all love today. This is definitely one of my favourite short stories of all time, and that is not just from any of Fitzgerald's short story collections.

Besides being a story of extraordinary imagination, wit and genius, 'The Diamond as Big as The Ritz' also functions as a social satire and as an allegory of greed, as many critics have noted.

Tales of the Jazz Age, Collins Classics by F. Scott Fitzgerald | | Booktopia

Fitzgerald should have wrote more stories like this one, he was born to write stories of this fantastical calibre. It was never an easy task to accomplish, but I think Fitzgerald has done a pretty good job, especially considering the manner in which he managed to interweave a consistent thematic framework throughout. There is a modern film adaptation of the same name, starring Brad Pitt in one of his career-defining performances in my opinion, which has also done a pretty good job of adapting this short story.

I understand that this was written when Fitzgerald was still an undergraduate student at Princeton though, so there is a justification for its inclusion of a sort. At first, however, 'O Russet Witch! The story really kicks off when Merlin decides to marry Olive, and when there is such a clear and poignant juxtaposition between Olive and the flapper Caroline. The proposal scene at Pulpat's is just pure genius, and is definitely one of the best scenes and chapters in this collection. I feel that there is an underlying critique of the ideology and mentality of the bourgeois as well, throughout the story.

In short, 'O Russet Witch! Most of Fitzgerald's work deals with the disintegration of the American Dream, in fact. The aura of tragedy and failure that permeates throughout 'The Lees of Happiness', and throughout the marriage of Jeffrey and Roxanne, is a good indication of this recurrent theme. Even the title indicates as much. However, besides Fitzgerald's disillusionment, 'The Lees of Happiness' is a sad love story that was too naive to survive for long in the 'new world'.

Its inclusion was superfluous. But still, besides their oddity and humorous nature, it would have been better if these stories had been left to slip into obscurity. As it is, 'Flappers and Philosophers' offers a better selection and a more refined taste of the true Fitzgerald standard. I was afraid of getting disappointed. How could I not after loving The Great Gatsby so much?

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It felt to good to be true, but to my great fortune it was true! Every short story's language is magnificent and flows so beautifully and every short story provokes the reader with new feelings; it's a roller-coaster! I do normally not like short stories collections that much which is why I chose this as my n I was afraid of getting disappointed.

I do normally not like short stories collections that much which is why I chose this as my next Fitzgerald-pick; if it was bad, I would just tell myself it was because it was short stories. But now I am no longer afraid to try another one of this genius' works! If I can get excited about short stories, then nothing else can go wrong! Some of these stories I really liked and others not so much.

The fantasies were my favorite. There were great moments of description, narrative and characterization that were quintessentially F. Scott Fitzgerald—I very much enjoyed those. Perhaps a bit too madcap at moments, the weight of the age—particularly the insidious compromises of romance and reverie—lies heavy over these tales.

The extra stories in this were great and fast paced. Readers also enjoyed. Short Stories. About F. Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was an American writer of novels and short stories, whose works have been seen as evocative of the Jazz Age, a term he himself allegedly coined. He is regarded as one of the greatest twentieth century writers. New other : lowest price. Show More Show Less. Pre-owned Pre-owned. No ratings or reviews yet. Be the first to write a review. Rowling , Hardcover. Anna Todd 5 Books- After Series. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman hardback 2.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald , Paperback Martin Paperback, NEW George R. You may also like. This item doesn't belong on this page.


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