Here comes one of those rainy days when I would peek out of the window and feel incredibly glad to be snuggling up with two of my favorite boyfriends: bed and hot chocolate. And may I add the third: a Fitzgerald book. I have just finished Tender is the Night (my fourth Fitzgerald read after The beautiful and damned, This side of Paradise, and The Great Gatsby) and my mind is so overflowing with emotions that here I am, at my personal sanctuary, feeling a vital urge to write down, to express… What thought-provoking reads of such glamor, such pain, which touch on the essence of existence and human relationships, yet seem to be nonchalantly covered in dry wit and lyrical prose!
A fervent admirer of the Golden 20s and the Jazz Age, I have for long been possessed by the elegant prose , the dry humor and the quirky charm of Fitzgerald’s novels. Fitzgerald’s tragic depiction of bittersweet loss, of youthful decadence, of disillusionment, of fading passions and wasted potentials, and especially of the transience of beauty and happiness, have touched me deeply. It is difficult to get Fitzgerald at the first read, given the author’s complex and verbose style; yet once one is able to dig behind the surface, a vast mesmerizing world of magnetic charms, broken love and morals on various human issues is gradually opening up. Indeed, in life I would love to be a Fitzgerald novel- the more one reads, the more one understands, appreciates and discovers.
Another appeal that I cherish the most about Fitzgerald is his eloquence and burning passion on the celebration of the female beauty. Most of his novels are based on his real life experiences and many lines are inspired by and directed at his wife Zelda Fitzgerald, who I could fathom was an intriguing and complex entity reflected in Daisy Buchanan, Gloria Gilbert, or Nicole Diver. Imagine those beautiful lines bursting with love and affection flung at you:
And even disregarding all the controversy over their purpose and content, Fitzgerald’s novels stand by themselves as masterpieces of the most sophisticated English language. His words were so delicately chosen and his sentences were so beautifully woven that I easily become a Fitzgerald-obsessive and unconsciously start using many lines in daily conversations (with some twists of course). As Edgar Allan Poe rightfully posits, “beauty of whatever kind, in its supreme development, invariably excites the sensitive soul to tears.”
And I blame you, the great Fitzgerald, for turning me into this far gone melancholic, nostalgic creature.
— Vintage Furrie
Pictures taken by Phoebe Nguyen and Natascha Asberger
Quote pictures complied from various sources via Pinterest