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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars VERY TOUCHING, VERY WELL DONE
"It is seven thirty on an August evening. The windows in the living room of the gray house are wide open patiently exchanging the tainted inner atmosphere of liquor and smoke for the fresh drowsiness of the late hot dusk. There are dying flower scents upon the air, so thin, so fragile, as to hint already of as summer laid away in time."
This is the story of...
Published on April 10 2004 by Heather Negahdar

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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Among His Better Efforts
As a fan of Fitzgerald's writing, I was truly disappointed bythis book. Verbose and somewhat boring early on in the text, the bookhas none of the best qualities of his better works. His tendency to write the elegant sentence is taken too far too often in this text, having the effect of a continual stream of unnecessary adjectives normally associated with writers below...
Published on April 21 2000


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars VERY TOUCHING, VERY WELL DONE, April 10 2004
By 
"It is seven thirty on an August evening. The windows in the living room of the gray house are wide open patiently exchanging the tainted inner atmosphere of liquor and smoke for the fresh drowsiness of the late hot dusk. There are dying flower scents upon the air, so thin, so fragile, as to hint already of as summer laid away in time."
This is the story of a young couple Anthony and Gloria Patch living out their days to the hilt in New York City as they await the death of Anthony's grandfather, Adam Patch from whom they expect to inherit his massive fortune.
Gloria is a spoilt child from Kansas City turned into a sophisticated and most beautiful woman. Gloria does not intend to lift a finger to do any domestic work in the home, no matter how slight; while Anthony who considers himself an aesthete, finds it quite hard to get his act together and instead of buckling down to some work, prefers instead to hang with his wife and their friends on nightly binges. They drink and eat in the classiest restaurants and hotels, rent the most expensive apartments, travel out to the West in the spring time driving plush cars, wearing top-of-the-line clothing and just generally living it up high on the hog, as they wait.
Meet Maury Noble who is Anthony best friend who spends his time between New York and Philadelphia; Richard Caramel who has just completed a writing a book and looking for new ideas for a second one. Joseph Bloeckman from Munich who started out small in America and is now a big shot in Show Biz. Also the quiet Jewess Rachael Barnes and Muriel Kane who is young, flirtatious and sometimes a bit too talkative and Tana the Japanese housekeeper of the Patches.
We are shown the Patches at their very best as the novel starts, with the world at their feet and loaded with cash with which they make very expensive choices. But, as we get further in, we see things begin to change gradually and we realize that those very choices will be their very downfall. It was quite a good read but it could be very heartbreaking at times as we put ourselves into the shoes of the main characters. All lovers of F. Scott Fitzgerald should read this book if you haven't done so already, and those of you who like reading about the ultra rich in the Roaring Twenties this one is for you. It is the kind of book that you feel you will want to read again. It is that good and I shall miss it. Heather Marshall 10/04/04
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not Among His Better Efforts, April 21 2000
By A Customer
As a fan of Fitzgerald's writing, I was truly disappointed bythis book. Verbose and somewhat boring early on in the text, the bookhas none of the best qualities of his better works. His tendency to write the elegant sentence is taken too far too often in this text, having the effect of a continual stream of unnecessary adjectives normally associated with writers below his caliber. The work also seems thrown together, with pieces of stage script and overly-sentimental poetry splashed among the pages. I can't help but think, with respect to how unpolished the product was, that he had an idea and a deadline and the deadline won. Better books to read by Fitzgerald are The Great Gatsby, Tender is the Night, and even the unfinished The Love of the Last Tycoon. His collected short stories also offer enjoyable reading. I realize I am at odds here, but I cannot recommend this book.
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4.0 out of 5 stars GREAT SADNESS, March 20 2011
By 
Mary Gina Machado "Gina Book" (Brampton) - See all my reviews
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although FSF goes off on a tangent every once in a while, it is hard to leave his books and read something less intense
FSF is not a happy read or is he a happy person but i love his stories-he is intense and i love the era as well
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Tragic Tale of Anthony Patch, March 19 2004
By 
The Beautiful and Damned, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is a tragic tale of a man named Anthony, struggling with several issues. It begins with his own laziness and social anxiety, only to continue with an effort to achieve the love of a beautiful, yet seemingly unattainable, woman. War, alcohol and other women also play a large role in the struggles Anthony encounters throughout the novel. Ultimately, this book portrays the life of a man whose lackadaisical attitude about life, eventually leads to his own downfall and inevitable insanity.
Fitzgerald wrote this piece in order to analyze the time in which it was written. Throughout the entire novel, there is a specific reference to prohibition and how alcohol was used not only for pleasure, but also as an escape. Throughout the story, as Anthony's life becomes more troubling and hard for him to handle, the reader is able to see he resorts to alcohol more and more and it eventually ends up consuming his life. His addiction and lack of purpose in life eventually leads to his downfall. By the end, Anthony is unable to go one day, let alone a few hours, with out getting drunk and spends the little money he and his wife have to obtain more alcohol. This drunken scene only continues to grow worse after he enters the war scene.
Another significant event perceived by the author through this piece is the war. Fitzgerald was in the army, following his senior year at Princeton, and due to this, many of the details of the war in the novel may have been significant memories to Fitzgerald in which he wished to reveal to those who were uninformed. The war played a large role in this novel as a whole. While things were growing dull in Anthony and Gloria's marriage, issues in the world were elevating. When Anthony goes to enlist, their marriage is given time to breathe and recuperate while they are apart. Yet, Anthony's faithfulness is questioned once he has been away from Gloria for a while and he begins to forget his life back at home. While providing an escape for Anthony and Gloria's' marriage, the war changed their relationship. It seemed to be a turning point at first with Anthony's return, yet after the first week they were reunited, the couple was once again back to their fighting, drinking and partying away what little patience and money they still obtained.
Much like Anthony's character in the book, Fitzgerald's involvement in the war efforts had a large impact on his life. This greatly influenced the details of the war and Anthony's romantic love affair in the novel. While Fitzgerald was at one of his army posts, he met a girl named Zelda Sayre, who may have been represented by Dorothy's character in the novel. Yet in the novel, Anthony's affair with Dot was what eventually ate away at his pride and confidence. He had worked so long and hard to achieve Gloria's companionship. He had fought so hard to obtain what he thought to be unattainable, a beautiful, young, and full of life, woman. Yet, in the end, he allowed this relationship to disintegrate, and found himself in the arms of another. His guilt eventually became so great that he was unable to deal with it. This guilt lead him to eventually push away all of Dots' affections and do the only thing he knew how to do, drink her out of his memory. In the end, when Dot reappeared at his apartment door, begging for his love, no matter what the circumstance, Anthony's guilt, insanity and drunken state gave way to his need for her extinction. Following this instance, Anthony had nothing left to look forward to, and retreated into his mind, to a place in his childhood where he found comfort. There he stayed, no longer caring whether or not his grandfather's money was obtained or anything else, except his small stamp collection, living content only through his memories of the past.
Another conflict of society at this time in which Fitzgerald attempted to portray was the carelessness of the upper class and their inevitable downfall. The Patch couple is a prime example of such social standings. Both came from relatively well off families, yet instead of taking responsibility for their lives and their future life together, they depended solely on the possibility of wealth from Adam's grandfather throughout their entire marriage. In any attempt to find a job to support themselves, they were easily distracted. Although eventually they won the lawsuit and the money Anthony's grandfather had unintentionally left, by this time it was pointless. It took five years to gain the money they had been waiting for, for so long. Ironically, it was not until Anthony had given up both physically and psychologically, that the money was obtained. This symbolized how hard and long someone can work for something, eventually driving themselves to insanity before the goal is reached and once it's actually achieved, one is too exhausted both physically and mentally to care anymore.
In this novel, the author accurately portrayed life during this time, and showed his feelings on issues such as war, love, money, social standing and sanity. The author's indication of how these issues correspond with and affect each other as well as the outcome of the combination of such issues is revealed through this novel. This allows the reader to get an accurate sense of life during this time, both of the prosperous and those who struggled. The war had a great affect on the sanity, monetary situation, and relationships of many men at this time allowing for the creation of such characters as in The Beautiful and Damned. Yet Fitzgerald took it one-step further and created a dramatic and eventually tragic love story that grips the reader until the last line of the story with Anthony saying, "I showed them...It was a hard fight, but I didn't give up and I came through!" (449).
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4.0 out of 5 stars Often Beautiful, If Ultimately Damned, Jan. 27 2004
By 
Yan Timanovsky (Brooklyn, NY) - See all my reviews
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Fitzgerald's second novel shows a maturation rather than maturity. It is a no-frills, yet poignant and focused portrait of the profoundly amoral young aristocracy boozing up the 1920s, rather than a predictable rise-and-fall morality tale. Here, Fitzgerald holds the reins over his language; he is firmly in control, cutting down on some long-winded passages and verbosity seen in This Side of Paradise.
B&D is true to the values of its hero, Anthony Patch, a superfluous and utterly indolent Harvard graduate who's far less sure of what he wants and likes than what he doesn't, except of course, for Gloria, a beautiful and narcissistic partner whose taste is compatible with his own.
Awaiting his grandfather's demise, the young couple drinks away their days and nights because there is nothing else they can conceive of doing. Their friends are a philosopher whose fundamental maxim is that there is nothing worth doing and a writer whose early promise deteriorates into banal tripe - a tragic waste of talent he is blind to.
Fitzgerald's prose and story are so deceptively fluid that the reader can miss many passive and active attitudes, bereft of any values or standards (other than aesthetic ones), towards life, family, fidelity, war, and death. In this world, marriage is a refuge from boredom (albeit a hopeless one), work is debasing, war is a decoration of the moneyed class, and wealth itself is a presumption.
As, usual, Fitzgerald's strengths (reaching the acme in Gatsby) are in his ability to describe feelings and moments. From Anthony's courthship of Gloria to his military affair with Dot, FSF never loses the palpable understanding of his own characters to satisfy effect.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Decent at best, Jan. 3 2004
By 
Sarang Gopalakrishnan (Urbana, IL) - See all my reviews
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+ It's well-written, well-paced and a fairly exciting read.
+ The atmosphere of a decadent upper class is captured quite well.
- The plot is familiar, and the characters are mostly unmemorable. The girl is probably the best of the lot, but she's over-drawn. The guy (Anthony Patch) is too bloodless to be sympathetic. Everyone else is a stick.
So overall it's a good read, but not worth re-reading.
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3.0 out of 5 stars My Thoughts of the Beautiful and the Damned, Oct. 10 2003
By A Customer
My thoughts of: The Beautiful and the Damned
The Beautiful and the Damned, by F.Scott Fitzgerald, is an exciting novel that brings friendship. Love, and confusion of young life all together. "here eyes were gleaming ripples in the white lake of her face; the shadows of her hair bordered the brow with a persuasive unintimate dusk." The author clearly tries to describe the joy and sorrow of finding a new love throughout this novel. Fitzgerald shows the ups, downs, confusions, and oddness of how love begins, lingers, and in some cases, ends.
Anthony Patch begins as a young, well educated, and wealthy man. He acts like a regular young man, engaging in drinking, associating with peers, and finding love. He stumbles upon love through a friend, Richard Caramel, an interesting author. Richard's cousin, Gloria, is an attractive young lady who sparks a flame in Anthony's eyes almost instantly. They create what may be love but gradually realize that alcohol and greed soon replaces it all.
The setting of this novel seems perfectly fit for the story. It switches from one impressive city to the next, Boston and New York City. A big city naturally puts these characters into play. The activities they persue, and every young person dreams of, fall snuggly into Boston Massachusetts and New York City. Dancing, dining out, and drinking, done so often they become almost as natural as breathing, all activate their fancy high life.
The characters in this novel bring back the old fashioned yet, somehow, modern ways of the young. The protagonist, Anthony Patch, signifies a highly opinionated person which shows throughout the story as he places himself in deep discussions with Gloria, the antagonist. The deep discussions also occur with Maury and Richard, some of their closest companions. Maury and Richard both get along great, but they characterize very different people. For instance, Richard loves writing. Writing almost addictively, searching for a new character to create always stays on his mind. Maury, a lot like Anthony, stands as an opinionated person who gives the two much to talk about, which only adds more interest to the story. Gloria conversates as well, but mostly about things only appealing to her. Gloria presents what Anthony and Maury call a "childish" kind of glow. Though she seems childish, this feature actually attracts people to her the most. All the characters play an interesting and important role in this book.
The Beautiful and the Damned, definitely worth reading, shows the realism of everyday life in the 1920's. F.Scott Fitzgerald portrays the life of the young and how easily it might self destruct through greed, material wants, and alcoholism. Fitzgerald proves that the fairytale of married life among the wealthy rarely happens. Money, though abundant, possibly means a lack of love and other ingredients that fuel a healthy life. Money turns into the only reason Gloria stays with Anthony. Though this book may seem fantasy-like at first, it breaks through the candy coated appearance of wealthy life in the early 1920's
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Beautiful and Damned: A Look into the Elite, Oct. 9 2003
The Beautiful and Damned:
A Look into the Elite
"As you first see him he wonders frequently, whether he is not without honor and slightly mad." This type of confusion is typical when following the characters through their whirlwind lifestyles in F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel, the Beautiful and Damned. Fitzgerald portrays the rich and shameful through the eyes of one of New England's socialites. Fitzgerald holds nothing back when his characters come in contact with alcohol, nightlife, and women in 1910's New York. Having wealth doesn't always bring the happiness and comfort that every human needs and wants.
The action begins by trailing Anthony Patch and his friends fresh out of Harvard. His social status comes from his grandfather, who was a big reformer back in the late 1850's. Anthony and his friends, Maury Nobel and Richard Caramel maintain a lifestyle of extravagant meals and lavish Broadway plays. Anthony's life suddenly takes a turn when he meets Gloria Gilbert. Soon after meeting her, he falls head over heels in love, then beginning a romantic journey with Gloria. Anthony and Gloria finalize their love with marriage. The story unfolds through the trials and tribulations of marriage life for the two.
The realistic setting of 1913's New York City and the Boston area is one of the most important elements of the book. The events that occur could only happen in the New York night life. Each character slowly realizes that they would never live anywhere else in world. Through the book, Anthony "found himself thoroughly enjoying New York." Fitzgerald drew from his own experiences in New York, one of the most influential cities of the 1920's and 1930's. Some other major U.S. cities came into play for the happy couple on their honeymoon. They travel to places like "Chicago, Hot Springs and the West." Without the setting the story would never work out the same.
The protagonist, Anthony Patch is a tall and thin, 25 year old, meek and simple man, who aspires to be an aesthete. He also looks for love in the big city. Sure enough he finds it with Gloria Gilbert. After the honeymoon, he soon realizes that his new wife becomes dependent on material things. Anthony soon finds his life falling into a financial downward spiral. Gilbert, the antagonist, is a 22 year old free spirit coming from the mid-west. After marriage her true colors bleed through, making Anthony realize that she is not the woman he thought. Gloria realizes that he becomes boring to her and she doesn't love him, but she stays for the financial security. Maury Nobel and Richard Caramel are long time friends of Anthony. Richard, a best-selling author, feels much older than the others. He is a short, bald man. Maury, tall and thin, nervous man, meets his best friend at Harvard.
The pace of the plot starts out slow, but then picks up. All the elements of the book come together very well. Fitzgerald takes the reader to 1913's New York to the life of Anthony Patch. His fast pace lifestyle reflects into his marriage, which is run by greed and alcohol. The plot moves smoothly and is simple to understand, which makes it easier to have fun reading this book. Fitzgerald's rendition of a new couple in a big city relates too much of the population.
The type of language Fitzgerald use is sophisticated yet casual English. The diction shows the readers that both Fitzgerald and the characters of the novel have high levels of education. The language explains one of the most important factors in the book: money. "A classic is a successful book that has survived the reaction of the next period or generation," this quote is classic for some of the conversations between Maury and Anthony. The chance of higher education gives the characters multiple opportunities for a better life.
The Beautiful and Damned depicts the stereotypical views of the wealthy not having problems when in fact they have many of the same problems as everyday, ordinary people. When all the events of the book join together, it becomes a wonderful piece of literature. Some of other Fitzgerald's novels in include The Great Gatsby and This Side of Paradise. This book is beautifully written and very entertaining to read.
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3.0 out of 5 stars The Boring and Damned, June 22 2003
By 
"melee82" (San Marcos, TX) - See all my reviews
This book really wasn't that great. It was slow and hard to get into. Many incidences were repetitive and the book was a whole lot of nothing. The ending was a let down, and I grew to have a strong feeling of contempt for many of the characters. If you like Fitzgerald, stick with the Great Gatsby or Tender is the Night. Otherwise you'll find reading this book is boring and you'll be damned to want to finish it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Moral depravity personified, Feb. 22 2003
By 
Chris Salzer (Gainesville, GA United States) - See all my reviews
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The genius of F.Scott Fitzgerald shines brilliantly in this vastly underappreciated classic novel of moral depravity. The pervasive themes of Fitzgerald include moral corruption, profligate behavior, agnosticism, selfishness, narcissism, egocentrism, and of course, a sick obsession with money and alcohol. These themes permeate all too well throughout the beautifully written The Beautiful and Damned(pardon the pun).
Released in 1922, 2 years subsequent to the seminal This Side of Paradise and 3 years prior to the magnum opus The Great Gatsby, incomprehensibly, The Beautiful and Damned was not well received critically nor financially. As a result, history has erroneously filed it under the dubious sophomore jinx category. Strange it may seem, I vehemently disagree. As you read this book, you witness first-hand the maturation of an amazing writer. No American writer of the 20th Century can compare to the profound power and unwavering genius that is F.Scott Fitzgerald. If you enjoyed The Great Gatsby, you will no doubt enjoy this work - an equally beautifully writen and tragic tale of aspiring morally depraved young Americans in pursuit of The American Dream.
"Remarkable that a person can comprehend so little and yet live in such a complex civilization."
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The Beautiful and Damned
The Beautiful and Damned by F Scott Fitzgerald (Hardcover - Nov. 16 2010)
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