Great Gatsby Chapter Summary
In chapter one of the Great Gatsby we are introduced to the narrator Nick Carraway, a young man who has moved from the Midwest Of America to West Egg in New York to become a bonds salesman. We discover that the events that Nick is going to tell us about happened a year ago and he is retelling the story of his time in West Egg and his experiences with Gatsby. Nick moved to New York and rents a small house next to a mansion which is owned by Gatsby. On the other side of the bay lies East Egg, this is the more fashionable of the two and is home to Daisy Buchanan, Nicks second cousin and Tom Buchanan a former Yale polo player. In chapter 1 Nick visits Tom and Daisy's estate. There is a women unknown to Nick at this point there called Jordan Baker, a professional golfer and friend of Daisy. They discuss topics current to the time until they are interrupted by a phone call in which we find out from Jordan that it is Toms mistress, Tom fails to cover this up. Tom and Daisy are keen to set Jordan and Nick up. When Nick arrives back across the bay to West Egg he sees Gatsby sitting outside his mansion staring and reaching out to a green light at the end of the dock on East Egg.
Chapter 2 begins with Nick and Tom travelling by train to New York as Tom insisted that Nick meets 'His Girl'. This is the first time we are introduced to Myrtle Wilson, Toms mistress. Myrtles husband owns a car repair garage. After talking to George Wilson, myrtle leaves her husband at the garage thinking she is going into New York to visit her sister. Tom, Myrtle and Nick make their way to their apartment, during this Myrtle decides to buy a dog . Once they arrive at the apartment Myrtle calls her sister and her friends The McKees. Their time at the apartment is spent getting very drunk and discussing topics like Myrtles marriage and how she is desperate to improve her life. As everyone is extremely intoxicated Tom gets very aggravated by Myrtle mentioning Daisies name and when she repetitively says it he lashes out and breaks Myrtles nose. The evening then ends and Nick makes his way home.
In chapter one we are briefly informed that Gatsby hosts extravagant parties at his mansion on West Egg, people flock from miles away to attend. In chapter 3 we discover his parties include catering ( two meals), an orchestra and alcohol. Party goers stay dancing and mingling until the early hours of the morning at Gatsby's mansion. Nick sees these parties go on from his house but doesn't attend one until he personally receives an invitation from Gatsby himself. Nick attends the party and encounters Jordan Baker, the two then go on talking to people about Gatsby, who he is and what's his occupation . No one they speak to personally knows Gatsby and Nick and Jordan are told rumours such as Gatsby once 'Killed a man'. Nick begins to talk to a man who turns out to be Gatsby himself, after talking for a small while Gatsby asks to speak to Jordan alone. Jordan comes out of the room from talking to Gatsby very excited stating that what he has told her is 'amazing'. Later on in the chapter it is apparent that Nick and Jordan start to see more of each other and despite her flaws Nick is very intrigued by her. Chapter 4
In the beginning of chapter 4 Nick lists and discuses some of the guests he has encountered at Gatsby's parties such as Ewing Klipspringer who practically lives at Gatsby's mansion and a long list of other attendees. In this chapter Gatsby invites Nick to have lunch with him in the city. On the journey there in Gatsby's car Gatsby tries to clear up any rumours Nick has heard. Gatsby tells Nick he was from a well off background and lived in San Francisco until he studied in England at Oxford university, after university Gatsby states that he joined the war efforts and was a major in the military. Once Gatsby and Nick arrive in New York City they have lunch with a man called Meyer Wolfsheim, Wolfsheim is a professional gambler, notorious and deeply involved in organized crime this is Gatsby's link to organized crime. In the same afternoon Nick also has tea with Jordan Baker and she reveals what Gatsby told her that night at the party. Jordan tells Nick that Daisy knew Gatsby when he was a military officer, they were very much in love. When Gatsby went off to war Daisy promised she'd wait for him. But Gatsby was poor so Daisy turned her attentions to Tom and on the day before the wedding Jordan found Daisy reading letters from Gatsby and reconsidering whether she should marry tom, but the wedding went on. Jordan then tells Nick that Gatsby moved to West Egg so his lover would only be across the bay from him and he hoped one day she would attend one of his parties. Gatsby also requested that Nick invite Daisy for lunch and he would go too so he can see her.
In the beginning of chapter 5 Gatsby goes over to Nicks house and Nick promises to call up Daisy about lunch the next morning. Gatsby also asks Nick if he wants to make a bit of extra money but Nick declines as he's not sure what it might entail. The next day Nick rings Daisy and she agrees to have lunch with him without Tom. Gatsby wants it to be perfect so sends over a gardener and flowers to Nicks house. Gatsby arrives early to Nicks and is very nervous, when Daisy arrives the atmosphere is very awkward between the three. Excusing himself Nick leaves the room and tries to give Daisy and Gatsby some alone time. When he arrives back around half an hour later the mood is much more joyous and Gatsby and Daisy are talking and enjoying themselves. Gatsby then goes onto inviting Nick and Daisy to come and see his estate, Daisy is amazed by it and even sobs at the sight of Gatsby's beautiful shirts, Gatsby shows Daisy all of his materialistic possessions. Nick then leaves Daisy and Gatsby alone in his mansion and heads home.
Chapter 6 begins with a reporter coming to Gatsby's to find out about the mystery of him, everybody wants to know who Gatsby is and rumours are spreading like wild fire. Nick then goes onto telling the reader about who Gatsby really is. We learn that Gatsby's real name is James Gatz and he was originally from North Dakota, Gatsby's real past is very different to what he first told Nick on the way to the city. James Gatz changed his name to Gatsby when he got a taste of high society, Gatsby became his persona. Dan Cody, a wealthy man took Gatsby under his wing and spent 5 years with Gatsby travelling 3 times around the continent. Later on in the chapter Tom and Daisy attend one of Gatsby's extravagant parties. Gatsby dances with Daisy and the pair talk on Nicks doorstep for half an hour alone before returning back to dinner. Tom doesn't eat dinner with Gatsby and Daisy but goes and sits at another table, Daisy knows what he's up to. Daisy finds the evening appalling except for the time she spent with Gatsby. Nick and Gatsby then go on to reviewing the evening.
Chapter 7 In chapter 7 Nick discovers that all of his servants have been replaced as he believed his old ones might spill secrets about him and Daisy. It is a extremely hot day when Nick, Gatsby and Jordan go to lunch at Tom and Daisies. Daisy confesses her love for Gatsby when Tom leaves the room to talk to Myrtle on the phone. Daisy then suggests they go into New York City. Tom is very suspicious about Daisy and Gatsby and comes to the conclusion that they are having an affair. On the route into town Tom stops at Wilson's garage as he is low on gas to discover that he is very unwell and himself and Myrtle will be moving West as he has learnt that Myrtle has been having an affair with a man he is not sure of yet. The group then head to a room in the Plaza hotel where Tom confronts Gatsby . Gatsby then declares that Daisy never loved Tom, but Daisy did love Tom for a short while and therefore doesn't back Gatsby up. Tom then orders Gatsby and Daisy to head back home and Tom, Jordan and Nick follow closely behind. The narration then turns to Wilson who has been found by a man named Michaelis. Myrtle then runs away from her husband and is hit by a passing car that fails to stop. Tom pulls over in his car to discover the body is myrtles, he is very upset . Tom then finds out that the car description of the one that killed Myrtle matches Gatsby's. Back at East Egg Nick finds out that it was Daisy that was driving the car that killed Myrtle. Chapter 8
Nick suggests that Gatsby leave for a while before his car is identified. Gatsby then starts to tell Nick about how he ended up at Oxford, it turns out that he never attended but ended up in the town trying to get home after the war and also what happened in the past between him and Daisy, when Gatsby arrived back to America Daisy was on her honeymoon, this left Gatsby melancholy. Gatsby tells Nick that he is going to have the pool cleaned as he hasn't used it once this summer and plans to. The narrative then turns to Wilson and Michaelis. Michaelis goes to see Wilson but he is not there. Wilson had driven to Gatsby's house adamant that he has killed his wife. Wilson shoots Gatsby whilst he is in his swimming pool. Nick discovers Gatsby's body in the pool and Wilson's body lying dead on the grass.
In chapter 9 Nick discovers that Daisy and Tom have gone on a trip and is unsure what to do and who to invite to Gatsby's funereal but believes he deserves a good send off. Nick contacts Wolfsheim but is upset to find out that he will have nothing to do with the funereal. Nick gets into contact with Henry Gatz, Jays father who will be attending the funereal. Nick also receives a call from Klipspringer who only rang with a query about his shoes, Nick hangs up. On the day of the funereal Nick tries to get Wolfsheim to attend one more time but he still refuses. Nick and Henry Gatz then make their way to Gatsby's funeral but Nick is shocked by the small turn out and felt that Gatsby deserved more, despite 100s attending his party only one man called Owl eyes actually attends the funereal. Further on into the chapter Nick speaks to Jordan but although he has feelings for her he still dismisses her. Then Nick sees Tom in New York and refuses to shake his hand as he discovered Tom played a part in Gatsby's death. Nick then leaves West Egg and back home to the Midwest. Nick on his way back thinks back to Gatsby's house and parties and how far Gatsby had come in life which was short lived and could have been great in the future.