Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Won't You Join In Old Sport?

The Great Gatsby.

My favourite novel. I first read in, like may other people probably did, while studying my A levels. It was for course work for English Literature. I absolutely fell in love with it. I've always loved the 20's, F. Scott Fiyzgerald now has his own shelf in my bookcase, and the characters where so different, most of them delusional and selfish, and the narrator wasn't the main character. I usually read detective type or science fiction but there is something about this book that captures my interest.

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald was published in 1925, at the height of the jazz age. Fitzgerald had hoped for it to sell 75, 000 copies but sold only 25,000 copies in his lifetime. Like most masterpieces, The Great Gatsby found fame after the author's death. Today, the book is described as ' a classic 20th century American fiction' and has sold 25 million copies worldwide.

For those who aren't familiar with the very famous novel, the story is set in the summer of 1922. It is told from the perspective of Nick Carraway, a Yale graduate and World War 1 veteran. He takes a job in New York and rents a small house on Long Island next door to the mysterious millionaire, Jay Gatsby. He also lives across the bay from his cousin Daisy Buchanan and her husband Tom. As the summer continues, Nick eventually receives an invitation from Gatsby to attend one of his lavish parties. Along with Nick, is Jordan, a golfer who accompanies him to the party where they both meet Gatsby himself. It is through Jordan that Nick finds out Daisy knew Gatsby back in 1917, when they shared a romantic relationship and Gatsby is still in love with Daisy.

This diagram explains the characters and their relationships with each other but beware SPOILERS. Sorry if its a little on the small/blurry side.

There have been 5 film adaptations of the novel, the 1974 version starring Robert Redford as Gatsby and Mia Farrow as Daisy, being the most famous. But now, Austrailian director Baz Luhrmann has created another, what looks to be , spectacular vision. The 1974 adaptation wasn't great. We watched in college after we had read the book. I thought it was very disappointing. Gatsby was well cast but that was about it. It lacked heart and soul and the other characters just wafted through the film. As soon as this new film was announced I was ecstatic!

Above is a link to an interactive book by Baz Luhrmann about the making of the film.

Everybody and everywhere has gone 'Gatsby' and Fitzgerald crazy. I thought it might be overload but i can't get enough of the 20's style appearing in shop windows and articles in magazines about where the best 20's style cocktails are served. The feel of 'Gatsby' is seeping through and I don't know about other places but London is embracing it more so than I imagined. Harrods has displays in their famous windows, which I'm hoping to go and stare at later this month. Oxford Circus tube station has been transformed (see below) and novel has been turned into a ballet and is currently on at the Sadler's Wells Theatre.

 Here is a link to some 'Gatsby' type places, some ideas of what to do at the weekend after you seen the film. http://www.standard.co.uk/goingout/attractions/great-gatsby-london-8566173.html 

Along with these goings ons, the magnificent posters are everywhere you go. I wished that the soundtrack could also be playing too, in the tube/train station. The soundtrack may be slightly modern but its so good. I sampled it, loved it, bought it. All the songs, I think, will fit well, apart from the songs by Jay Z, Fergie and Will.I.Am.

 I simply love these posters. Gotta collect them all (but in postcard form perhaps).

I have to mention Out of Print clothing, I am obsessed with them. They celebrate the world's greatest stories through fashion. They print book covers from classic novels and children's books on tshirts, jumpers, bags and stationary. They are also in partnership with Books for Africa and working towards donating books to those who don't have access to books at all. For each product sold, one book is donated to a community.

I can vouch for their products, my tote bag is as strong as an ox and my jumper is so darn cosey and warm.

They also have their own Gatsby HQ set up. With new t-shirt designs in many new colours (I have my eye on a purple on) and an amazingly addictive game on their website its worth having a look an soon you'll be swinging into the Gatsby spirit old sport!

I'm certainly obsessed!

Now if you'll excuse I'm going to start practicing my dance moves so I am ready for the film on Friday! Enjoy your Gatsby filled week and end!


  1. Oxford street station looks amazing!! I didn't know much about the history of the new film/story (was just really looking forward to it) but was nice to learn a lot more - and get even more excited for the new release!! x

    1. I need to get down there before they take it all down, want to take some photos. Let me know what you think of the film when u see it x