Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Great Gatsby: What He Wants

Chapter IV notes:

Nick records all of the names of those who attend Gatsby’s parties over the summer, and the reader gets a good idea of what kind of people show up: the 1%.

One day Gatsby takes Nick to lunch.  Nick’s impression of Gatsby has either disintegrated or he doesn't really have much to go on: "he has little to say" and he is "quite restless."  Gatsby is aware of the outlandish rumors about him, and he tells Nick a little about his excursions.  Nick thinks he’s lying until Gatsby produces physical proof of some of his stories.  

Gatsby continues to make reference to something sad that happened to him in his past.  He blames this on why he finds himself “among strangers because [he] drift[s] here and there trying to forget the sad thing that happened to [him].”  Gatsby informs Nick that he will hear more about it when he meets with Miss Baker later that day.

Why Gatsby reaches out across the bay.
For now, Gatsby and Nick have lunch with Mr. Wolfshiem, a gambler who fixed the 1917 World Series, and have an odd conversation; later Nick sees Tom in the same restaurant and introduces Gatsby.  For some reason, Gatsby is uncomfortable and disappears.

Later, Miss Baker explains to Nick the whole story of how Gatsby and Daisy once met, fell in love, how he went to war, and how she almost did not marry Tom.  Long story short, Gatsby bought that house to be close to Daisy, across the bay, hoping to see her one day; and now he wants Nick to invite Daisy to tea at his place while he is there, only she cannot know beforehand that he will be there, too.

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