I'm cheating on my book. I cannot juggle reading a bunch of different books. Although I was forced to do this in college, I try not to make a habit of it in my new "adult" freedom. I'm still reading This Side of Paradise, but I'm just not getting into it and have started another book. As I was explaining to a friend yesterday, I think the talent of some writers is in their storytelling, and some is in the beauty of the words. This Side of Paradise "is about the education of a youth, and to this universal story of Fitzgerald brought the promise of everything that was new in the vigorous, restless American during the years following World War I."
To me, in this book at least Fitzgerald's strength is certainly not in the storytelling - there are long expositions about morality and much of the book focuses on the status-seeking greed of the main character, Amory Blaine. The book finally got interesting, for me at least, when the arrogant Amory finally experiences heartbreak. Apparently Fitzgerald had just broken up with a girl (Zelda) when he finished writing a a manuscript he had been working on. He hoped if he became a successful novelist he would win Zelda back. Then, after the was accepted for publication, he wooed his girl back and she agreed to marry him! About a week after the book was published they married.
In fact, I'm finding the back story of Zelda and F. Scott more interesting than the book itself! I don't think that's a good sign.