10 of the Best F. Scott Fitzgerald Novels and Stories Everyone Should Read – Interesting Literature

f. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940) is one of the most important writers in American literature. He is credited with writing the “great American novel” and his stories and novels have come to epitomize the Jazz Age: the age of cocktails, parties, and excess in 1920s America. p>

but there is much more to f. Scott Fitzgerald’s work than this, as evidenced by his five novels and numerous short stories. however, what are fitzgerald’s best stories and books? below, we present ten of the best of him …

1. tender is the night.

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Its title is taken from John Keats’ “Ode to a Nightingale”, Tender Is the Night (1934) is Fitzgerald’s best known and most widely read novel after The Great Gatsby (see below). fitzgerald actually considers tender is the night as his great novel. it was his fourth novel and the last novel he completed before his death in 1940.

Set against the beautiful backdrop of the French Riviera, the novel centers on a group of American expatriates living there after World War I. A young actress befriends a glamorous couple and considers having an affair with her husband, a psychiatrist. But it turns out that there is more to this couple than meets the eye. The novel is almost a novel in code reflecting Fitzgerald’s own struggles with alcoholism and his romance with an actress, Lois Moran.

Recommended Edition: Tender Is The Night: A Romance (Penguin Modern Classics)

2. ‘the diamond as big as the ritz’.

this 1922 novel (sometimes classified as a short story) is about a young man who meets another man, percy washington, who boasts that his father is so rich he owns “a diamond bigger than the ritz-carlton hotel “. Percy’s family owns the only five square miles of land in the entire United States that has never been surveyed, on which not only a diamond mine was discovered, but also a mountain consisting of a solid diamond that is actually larger than the ritz hotel.

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recommended edition: flappers and philosophers: the collection of tales of f. scott fitzgerald (f scott fitzgerald penguin hardcover collection)

3. the beautiful and damned.

Fitzgerald’s second novel, The Beautiful and Damned is about Anthony Patch, a New York socialite. Like many of Fitzgerald’s later works, the novel deals with 10 of the Best F. Scott Fitzgerald Novels and Stories Everyone Should Read - Interesting Literaturethe themes of marriage, alcoholism, and social status. It is also a novel about romantic infatuation – another key Fitzgerald subject – and what happens when two people realise they no longer ‘love’ each other.

recommended edition: the beautiful and the cursed (collins classics)

4. ‘the curious case of benjamin button’.

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This is probably Fitzgerald’s best-known short story, especially since it was adapted for the big screen in 2008 by David Fincher, with Brad Pitt in the title role.

published in 1922, the story tells how the main character ages backwards, being born in 1860 as a 70-year-old man, and then working backwards through his sixties until (presumably, though this happens “out of -stage’) a baby dies. button is the ultimate outsider: he lives his life on an alternate trajectory and opposite to everyone else, even those closest to him.

recommended edition: flappers and philosophers: the collection of tales of f. scott fitzgerald (f scott fitzgerald penguin hardcover collection)

5. this side of paradise.

This was Fitzgerald’s first published novel, appearing in 1920. It is his most explicit “post-war” novel, dealing with the aftermath of the Great War on a group of young American friends. Its protagonist is an aspiring writer, and fittingly enough, Fitzgerald wrote the novel quickly and for the noblest of reasons: trying to impress a woman.

fitzgerald and his girlfriend zelda had been together for a short while, but she broke up with him. she wrote this side of paradise to become a successful writer and win her back. It worked: The novel was published on March 26, and before the month was out the first print run of 3,000 copies had sold out and Zelda had agreed to marry him.

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Recommended Edition: This Side of Paradise (Oxford World Classics)

6. ‘Babylon revisited’.

This is a slightly later story than the others on this list, written in 1930 and published the following year. While previous works had depicted the Jazz Age of the 1920s, this story responds to the aftermath of the Wall Street Crash of 1929, though the story also features flashbacks to the time of plenty that was the Jazz Age. /p>

The story follows a man, Charlie Wales, who is haunted by his past mistakes: it is one of Fitzgerald’s most nostalgic works. Among other things, the story focuses on his troubled relationship with his wife and his daughter.

recommended edition: flappers and philosophers: the collection of tales of f. scott fitzgerald (f scott fitzgerald penguin hardcover collection)

7. the last tycoon.

Fitzgerald’s last novel, left unfinished at the time of his death in 1940. Published in 1941 as The Last Tycoon, it also exists in another version, The Last Tycoon’s Love. Based on the real-life director of Hollywood film company MGM (Fitzgerald died while working in Hollywood), the novel revisits some of Fitzgerald’s most popular themes, including infatuation, disappointment, and status.

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Recommended Edition: The Last Tycoon (F Scott Fitzgerald Penguin Hardcover Collection)

8. ‘winter dreams’.

This 1922 short story is widely regarded as one of Fitzgerald’s finest works and is a powerful portrait of the loss of youthful illusions (a common theme in Fitzgerald’s writing). Based, as the night is tender, on Fitzgerald’s own love life (here, his infatuation and his failure to seduce socialite Geneva King), the story is about a young man from Minnesota who works at a local golf club, has his heart broken by a girl, and he goes off to fight in the first world war.

The story foreshadows the Great Gatsby in the central character’s romantic infatuation and social climb, and is considered the strongest story associated with the so-called “Gatsby group of plays.”

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recommended edition: flappers and philosophers: the collection of tales of f. scott fitzgerald (f scott fitzgerald penguin hardcover collection)

9. ‘the ice palace’.

This 1920s short story is based on a real ice palace that appeared at the 1887 Winter Carnival in Fitzgerald’s hometown of St Paul, Minnesota. Sally Happer, a young woman from Georgia, travels north to meet the family of her fiancé. the title refers to an epiphany happer experiences in the titular ice palace, when she reevaluates her attitude towards her fiancé and gets over her disillusionment with the cold north. Epiphany is a common feature of modernist short stories, and ‘The Ice Palace’ is one of Fitzgerald’s most overtly modernist works.

recommended edition: flappers and philosophers: the collection of tales of f. scott fitzgerald (f scott fitzgerald penguin hardcover collection)

10. the great gatsby.

our tenth and final choice in this selection of the classic f. Scott Fitzgerald’s stories could only have one title: his best-known novel. The Great Gatsby was originally titled Trimalchio in West Egg (a reference to a character in a libelous Roman novel), Under the Red, White, and Blue, and even The High Bounce Lover (yes, really). Fortunately, Fitzgerald was convinced to change the title.

nick carraway, the narrator of the novel, is a young man who has come to new york to work in the stock market. He lives on West Egg Island, where his neighbor is the wealthy Jay Gatsby, owner of a mansion. He soon introduces the mysterious Gatsby into his confidence and discovers a whole world of angst that underpins Gatsby’s material success.

gatsby has been called the great American novel and is certainly a candidate for that title. we have analyzed the novel here.

recommended edition: the great gatsby (the penguin english library)

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