The Great Gatsby – Chatper 6

Chapter Six

Long time no see Gatsby! I know I said I wouldn’t be posting as frequently. But I didn’t anticipate that I wouldn’t post on it for a whole week (see when I wrote even this I thought I would post it yesterday, but didn’t get around to it!) ! I keep saying to myself you’ve got time to go post about it, and read it, but I just find myself doing absolutely anything but writing about the next chapter. It’s not that I hate reading The Great Gatsby, it’s just that I’m not finding it as enjoyable to read as I thought I would. Not that much is really happening, and I’m actually not a fan of Fitzgerald’s writing style. It’s not at all like Mein Kampf which was nearly impossible to read, and I’m going to continue reading it, I just felt I should inform you all, why I’m not really posting about it. I’m just not inspired to spend the time posting about it, certainly not like I was for The Sending, since I really wanted to read that book. I hope that Catch-22 pleases me a lot more, so I can continue to post more often!

So Gatsby one morning is asked by a reporter for a comment, and the reporter is just looking for a comment on anything. Gatsby has becomes such a name, that this reporter thinks that whatever he says is news. Because of the huge number of rumours surrounding his name, I guess the report are is wondering if any of them are true, but really, some are so laughable. “Doesn’t live on a house, lives on a boat that looks like a house and is secretly moved up and down Long Island” is just one of them! It turns out that (I think, sometimes it is really hard to decipher what Nick is on about) the reporter, James Gatz is almost idolising Gatsby (I doubt James knew of Gatsby when he changed his name, but they really are similar), since he was able to come out of nowhere, which is apparently what makes this book so great. That it tells the tale of the American dream; rags to riches.

Anyway back to the story now, James is actually a deplorable man, well he isn’t terrible, but I just don’t like him. Actually, so far, the most likeable character has been Ms Baker, everyone else, I don’t really like. Wait, so Nick is the narrator of this story, and yet he knows so much about James Gatz, and what he thinks when he is alone, at night, in his bed? James’ fantasies, were a ‘hint of the unreality of reality, a promise that the rock of the world was founded securely on a fairy’s wing’, um, what? This book is becoming progressively stranger. (At this point I feel that I should explain my ‘sudden’ change in tune, in regards to this book. Before I was relatively neutral in regards to my discussion about the book, I hadn’t really formulated an opinion, and, sure sometimes I was negative, but I feel that now, I’m extra negative. This is probably because I’m finding it a challenge to read and write about the book, and have been doing anything but, for the past few days. But in addition, I think the opinion of a few other people, who, after mentioning The Great Gatsby movie, said that they had read the book, and in fact hated it, and that the only good thing was that it was short, so the suffering didn’t last, has tainted my own opinion. So, my whole headspace about this book has changed, but I’m fine with that.)

Wait now I’m confused, is James Gatz and Jay Gatsby the same person (that would make sense), but, how does Nick know all this now? So Nick explains in the next paragraph that indeed, he learnt all this from Gatsby himself later on, so this does explain a lot. But still, that’s a interesting passage of exposition, and it seems so random. There was a journalist, and then Nick decides to explain something that he was told later, and now we are hearing about when he was told this. Could it be more jarring?

So Nick spends a few weeks away from Gatsby, with Jordan, ‘trying to ingratiate myself with her senile aunt’, which just makes me dislike Nick more! So when Gatsby and Nick meet again, it is pierced by the arrival of Tom Buchanan, who if I remember correctly, is Daisy’s husband, which makes this very awkward. But what I can’t get, is why he is here in the first place, why on earth would Gatsby allow Tom to be here, or is it part of his plan to get Daisy for himself? Even so, why did these people accept an invitation to go riding around here, if they didn’t know him? Oh let’s just go over to a stranger’s house, whose apparently rich and powerful, and go riding without him, and then come back and make meaningless and awkward conversation, and say that we’ll be back when he hosts his next party!

Then the woman with Tom and Mr Sloane, declares that Nick and Gatsby simply must go and have tea with them, even though Gatsby clearly just offered for them all to have tea at his place, where other people might show up. At the same time Mr Sloane, doesn’t want them coming with him and this woman, while Gatsby clearly wants to. Nick politely declines (good choice), and Mr Sloane tries to get the woman to change her mind, by reminding her of some prior commitment, but that doesn’t work, and Gatsby says he’ll follow them in his car, since he doesn’t have a horse (I honestly cannot imagine a world where people still rode around on horses as a legitimate method of transport, I kinda wish it was like that again).

Outside, while Gatsby is getting ready, Mr Sloane and the lady were arguing, and Tom reveals that she has a big dinner party tonight, and Gatsby won’t know anyone there. Of course Tom is more interested in where Gatsby knows Daisy, and says that he is ‘old-fashioned’ (which makes me laugh!), and thinks that women run around too much these days. In short he just wants to completely control his wife and make sure she never has fun and doesn’t do anything unless he says so. The group leave before Gatsby is ready, to avoid him coming along.

At the next party Tom came with Daisy, probably to keep tabs on her. My she actually is strange, and again not all that likeable, she says to Nick that if he wants to kiss get, she’ll arrange it. Gatsby takes great delight in introducing them to all his famous guests. Tom doesn’t seen to mind that Gatsby and Daisy danced and that they spent time alone, our he just didn’t really notice. When Daisy wasn’t with Gatsby she want really having a good time, she was offended by the West Egg.

When it was time to leave Tom was trying to figure out just what Gatsby was, perhaps a bootlegger? In reality what actually is he, I think a crook! Daisy says he owned drug stores, but I doubt that. After they were gone, and all the other guests, Gatsby was back to his self doubting best, concerned Daisy didn’t have a good enough time, all Nick can do is reassure him otherwise. He seems to think she’d just leave Tom in one instant and it would be just as it was years ago. How deluded he is!

The chapter ends with Gatsby recounting his final moment with Daisy five years ago, and nock was reminded of something. His own love? His own past? In the end it was unexplainable and gone forever, which is a tad pathetic on my opinion.


4 thoughts on “The Great Gatsby – Chatper 6

    1. Yes, it is a good thing that there isn’t that much left, chapter 7 is pretty long though, so I’m going to have to split it up! It certainly has had rave reviews, since it’s one of the ‘classics’, but maybe since I’m not American I don’t quite see it the way some people do. Well, there’s still a chance it can be somewhat redeemed!

  1. According to The New Yorker, the book wasn’t very well reviewed when it originally came out.
    “When The Great Gatsby was published, on April 10, 1925, F. Scott Fitzgerald, living high in France after his early success, cabled Max Perkins, his editor at Scribners, and demanded to know if the news was good. Mostly, it was not. The book received some reviews that were dismissive (‘F. SCOTT FITZGERALD’S LATEST A DUD,’ a headline in the New York World ran) and others that were pleasant but patronizing. Fitzgerald later complained to his friend Edmund Wilson that ‘of all the reviews, even the most enthusiastic, not one had the slightest idea what the book was about.’ For a writer of Fitzgerald’s fame, sales were mediocre-about twenty thousand copies by the end of the year. Scribners did a second printing, of three thousand copies, but that was it, and when Fitzgerald died, in 1940, half-forgotten at the age of forty-four, the book was hard to find.”

    This prefaced their negative review of Baz Luhrmann’s film version.

    Wouldn’t it be funny if in another 88 years, the Baz Luhrmann movie is acclaimed as one of the masterpieces of cinema and the book it’s based on is almost entirely forgotten?

    1. I wonder what made it such a popular book if it wasn’t very well received? Something obviously happened to kick start its popularity. Maybe it was put into the American curriculum?

      It would be quite hilarious if the film turns out to have the same fate. It is strange how this happens, I believe it happened with The Shawshank Redemption, which didn’t do too well until it came out on DVD (or was it VHS?).

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