The Great Gatsby


Plot Summary

In the summer of 1922, Nick Carraway is a young man. He moves to New York from Minnesota, determined to learn about the business of bonds. He decides to rent a house on Long Island, in an area of "new rich" called West Egg. It is a fashionable and stylish place, and the people who live there have not had their wealth long enough to have made deep social connections. They are also more likely to display their riches and show off for other people. Jay Gatsby lives next door in a huge, Gothic mansion. Every Saturday night, there is an extravagant party at his house, but Gatsby himself is rather mysterious. No one knows that much about the man.

Even though Nick lives in West Egg, he actually has connections in East Egg, where the "old money" individuals live. He has also been Ivy-League educated at Yale. One evening, Nick goes to East Egg to have dinner with his cousin Daisy and her husband Tom. While Nick was at Yale, Tom was one of his classmates. Tom and Daisy introduce Nick to one of Daisy's friends, Jordan Baker. She is beautiful, but quite cynical about life. Despite this, she begins a romantic relationship with Nick. While Nick is visiting, he also learns that Tom and Daisy do not have a good marriage, and that Tom is carrying on an affair with Myrtle Wilson. She lives in the Valley of Ashes, with is an industrial dumping ground between New York City and West Egg. It is not long after discovering this that Nick goes to New York City with Myrtle and Tom. Tom has an apartment he keeps for parties, and at one such party - a gaudy, vulgar affair - Myrtle starts taunting Tom about his wife, Daisy. Tom breaks her nose.

Eventually, as the summer moves toward fall, Nick is invited to a party given by Gatsby. He finds Jordan Baker at the party, and they are both able to actually meet Gatsby. He is much younger than they would have expected, with a remarkable smile. He calls everyone he meets "old sport," and has taken on an English accent. During their time at the party, Gatsby asks if he can speak with Jordan alone. Nick learns about...

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