F Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940) left Princeton University in 1917 to join the army. He is said to have epitomized the Jazz Age, which he himself defined as 'a generation grown up to find all Gods dead, all wars fought, all faiths in man shaken'. In 1920 he entered a traumatic marriage which was to influence much of his writing.
Fitzgerald's first novel, about a coterie of Princeton socialites, appears in a 75th anniversary edition. (Mar.)
Fitzgerald's semiautobiographical first novel was considered intellectual and daring when it was published in 1920. Amory Blaine grows up in St. Paul in the early years of the century. His mother is an alcoholic whose wealth is sufficient to accommodate her eccentricities. She dotes on her son and encourages him to indulge his whims. His father is conspicuously absent. Amory observes the social graces, as befits someone of his class, but he is only capable of doing so superficially. He is always aware of himself and how he fits into his immediate surroundings. Because of this constant self-analysis, he finds it difficult to relax, to accept people as they are, and to make friends. It is at Princeton that Amory comes into his own, determined to make the best of what he considers from the outset to be the best years of his life. Narrator Dick Hill brings Amory to life with an energetic reading that captures the emotional swings of a spoiled and shallow man who never grows up. Recommended for public library collections.‘Nann Blaine Hilyard, Fargo P.L., N.D.