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F. Scott Fitzgerald

Have Book, Will Travel: 6 Literary Road Trips

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The most effective way humans can connect with and understand one another is, arguably, through a shared experience. If you have ever read a novel that detailed a personal experience or an awakening you resonated with, then you’re probably aware of the intricate emotional connection that literature can evoke. Narratives, featuring trying or thought-provoking journeys as a plot basis, can be highly inspirational. Readers may find themselves yearning for that experience, usually to better understand themselves or reality as a whole. Mimicking literary works — or aspects of them — in real-life can also provide insights into the author’s point-of-view, deepening that connection that transcends time and space. There are several works that leave bread crumb trails throughout North America.…

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Previously Unpublished Hemingway Story

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Having just celebrated the 74th anniversary of the Liberation of Paris, another celebration of Paris took place earlier this month when The Strand Magazine ran a previously unpublished story by Ernest Hemingway with post-war Paris as the focal point. A Room on the Garden Side is “an earthy, poignant sketch that takes place in Hemingway’s favorite hotel in Paris, the Ritz, at the end of World War II,” writes Strand Managing Editor Andrew F. Gulli.  “The narrator, Robert (also nicknamed Papa) and a group of irregular soldiers who fought their way into the city, newly liberated from the Nazis, are due to leave Paris the next day.” The narrator, explains Gulli, is in a room chatting books, life, love, death,…

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The Fitzgeralds’ Connecticut Fling: Its Effect on Gatsby

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In “Boats Against the Current: The Honeymoon Summer of Scott and Zelda,” Richard Webb details F. Scott Fitzgerald’s time in Westport, CT, and advances the theory that the inspiration for The Great Gatsby was not Great Neck, Long Island, but rather Westport. A companion documentary film is being produced by Robert Steven Williams, who provided this take on the book and his account of the dual projects. The challenge of making a documentary with the author of Boats Against the Current was trying to rein in Richard “Deej” Webb’s rational exuberance for the subject. We’d spent five years researching the Fitzgeralds’ time in Westport, CT, and had amassed hundreds of hours of footage and thousands of photos, many never seen…

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Sally Koslow on Fitzgerald’s Love Affair with Sheilah Graham in Her New Book, “Another Side of Paradise”

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It is always intriguing when an author shifts genres and offers us something very different – especially when the latest project captures our attention immediately and we declare ourselves followers of the writer. Sally Koslow, having written popular novels including The Late, Lamented Molly Marx, The Widow Waltz and Little Pink Slips that take place in real time, falls into this category. With the release of her first historical fiction novel Another Side of Paradise, Koslow engages her readers, drawing us into a memorable time in America for romance and female agency. From the moment we open this new work, we are transported into the life of Sheilah Graham, a woman born into poverty in England at the turn of the 20th…

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Presenting: The Real Housewives of Classic Literature!

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Everyone loves The Real Housewives! OK, to be fair, not everyone is aware of how magical the Real Housewives can be on occasion. While a lot of people find them irritating, where else are you going to find crazy moments where weird rich women debase themselves like insane animals in a menagerie for we the people to marvel at? No matter what your opinion is on The Real Housewives franchise, it’s hard to deny that they’re a bonafide cultural phenomenon. Love them or hate them, their hilarious quips, wild cat fights and generally unblinking attitude towards affluence are here to stay. So, if we were to cast a new season of Real Housewives, populated by some of the most desperate…

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Summer Celebrations: The 6 Wildest Parties in Literary History

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From music festivals to beach bashes, summer gives us the freedom to frolic outside and enjoy a margarita…or six. Summer really is all about the evenings of partying until the early morning with friends, or afternoons in the park, reading in the sun. We decided to combine these two fantastic summer activities by giving our take on the six wildest parties in literary history for you to fantasize about and maybe be inspired to throw your own summer bash. Matt’s Picks: The Acid Tests from Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe (Picador Reprint, 2008) “Everything in everybody’s life is…significant. And everybody is alert, watching for meanings.” Journalist Tom Wolfe following a group of degenerate hippies searching for ‘truth’ through the…

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Elvis Costello Shares the Books That are Most Important to Him

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Famous singer/songwriter Elvis Costello has a way with words. His songs are often darkly funny and filled with stories. Not only is he a magician with words when it comes to songwriting, but Costello recently added author to his list of achievements, proving once again just how much of a wordsmith he truly is. Unsurprisingly, he’s also a reader at heart and told New York Public Library some of his favorite literary cautionary tales. The Pat Hobby Stories, F. Scott Fitzgerald (Benediction Classics, 2011) Adolf Hitler: My Part In His Downfall, Spike Milligan (Viking Books, 2012) My Last Sigh, Luis Buñuel (Vintage Books, 2013) For the full post on Costello’s favorite books, visit NYPL.org.  

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The Basic Bitch Exists in Books and We Have Five Favorites

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Fall is the season of basic bitches: pumpkin spice everything, infinity scarves, knee-high boots and scented candles that smell like “Autumn Wreath.” A basic bitch devours these things, or at least Instagrams herself with them on the regular: #lovingfall #pumpkins #uggsarewarm. If you’re unfamiliar with the term, let me educate you: a basic bitch is a girl with no real distinct personality, who loves anything that’s popular and paints her life as an endless stream of duck-face selfies while clutching a Starbucks latte. We all know a basic bitch—hell, sometimes we are basic bitches (pumpkin spice just tastes sooo good!). And basic bitches have been around a lot longer than you’d think: they’ve been cropping up in our books for…

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What would Hemingway eat? A menu for a Moveable Feast

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I realized, as I worked my way through Ernest Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast, that he titled it so because his time in Paris was an ongoing banquet of social activities, incessant writing, and literal feasting and imbibing from one café to the next. It was also most apparent to me that, though he had already fallen into the arms of another woman when he wrote this memoir, he had truly loved his first wife, Hadley. Regret filters through when he speaks of their tender years together. So much so that I wondered if writing it could have been his way of telling her of his regret. But above all, as a gastronaut, I found the descriptions of food and drink…

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Zelda and Mrs. Hemingway: Literary Wives Take Center Stage

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Zelda Fitzgerald died 66 years ago to the day, in 1948. She had been a patient at Highland Mental Hospital in Asheville, North Carolina, off and on for nearly a dozen years. On March 10, fire spread through the hospital and burned nine women alive, including Zelda, who was on a locked ward awaiting electroshock treatment. As much for her turbulent lifestyle as for her horrific death, the wife of F. Scott Fitzgerald continues to serve as a tragic muse for contemporary novelists.  Therese Anne Fowler brings to life in wondrous historical detail Zelda’s Alabama upbringing, Scott’s early courtship, and her ambitions for writing and dancing in her novel Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald, now out in paperback. This…

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Love life got you down? Cheer up! At least you’re not married to a writer

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We’ve all heard, and told, our share of dating horror stories. Even for those who’ve found “the one,” maintaining relationships can be a struggle. If you’re feeling down about your latest bad date or marital spat, nothing can cheer you up quite like hearing about someone else’s disasters in love. And no one seems to have it quite as bad as those with the misfortune to fall for a writer. In Writers Between the Covers, authors Shannon McKenna Schmidt and Joni Rendon dish on the scandalous, appalling, and heart-wrenching love lives of some of the world’s most famous writers. Compared with the experiences of these spurned, used, and jilted lovers, your latest dating misfortune probably doesn’t seem so rotten. No…

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