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Zelda Fitzgerald

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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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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The Year of Reading Women came too late for Zelda Fitzgerald

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Siri Hustvedt’s newest novel, The Blazing World (Simon & Schuster, March 11) tells the story of a frustrated artist, Harriet (“Harry”) Burden, who presents a series of exhibits of her own work under the names of three male artists in an attempt to reveal the sexism inherent in the art world. There has of late been much attention focused on expanding the coverage and readership for women writers, and so Hustvedt’s theme of a female artist fighting for space and attention are certainly timely. 2014 has been declared the Year of Reading Women, after the hashtag #readwomen2014, started by Joanna Walsh, became part rallying cry and part celebration of the achievements of women writers. Walsh explains that she launched the project in part as a response…

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