stuff I read

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Summary from Goodreads: An isolated mansion. A chillingly charismatic artistocrat. And a brave socialite drawn to expose their treacherous secrets…

After receiving a frantic letter from her newly wed cousin begging for someone to save her from a mysterious doom, Noemí Taboada heads to High Place, a distant house in the Mexican countryside. She’s not sure what she will find—her cousin’s husband, a handsome Englishman, is a stranger, and Noemí knows little about the region.

Noemí is also an unlikely rescuer: She’s a glamorous debutante, and her chic gowns and perfect red lipstick are more suited for cocktail parties than amateur sleuthing. But she’s also tough and smart, with an indomitable will, and she is not afraid: Not of her cousin’s new husband, who is both menacing and alluring; not of his father, the ancient patriarch who seems to be fascinated by Noemí; and not even of the house itself, which begins to invade Noemi’s dreams with visions of blood and doom.

Her only ally in this inhospitable abode is the family’s youngest son. Shy and gentle, he seems to want to help Noemí, but might also be hiding dark knowledge of his family’s past. For there are many secrets behind the walls of High Place. The family’s once colossal wealth and faded mining empire kept them from prying eyes, but as Noemí digs deeper she unearths stories of violence and madness. And Noemí, mesmerized by the terrifying yet seductive world of High Place, may soon find it impossible to ever leave this enigmatic house behind.

So….are you looking for a chilly, creepy book? Maybe a bit of psychological horror in the vein of Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House or perhaps some Gothic horror a la Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca? Have I got a book for you!

Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s new novel Mexican Gothic follows a young woman from Mexico City, Noemí, who is sent by her father to visit her cousin Catalina. Catalina is newly married to an Englishman and living on his estate near a former silver mine deep in the countryside but she has sent every more disturbing, erratic letters. So Noemí takes herself and her city-girl sophistication off to the very remote estate of High Place.

And it is a dreary, chilling, crumbling estate perpetually shrouded in dense fog. The Doyle family built the English mansion – and basically imported as much of Britain as they could – over the silver mine they took over in the 19th century. The mine is no longer operating and the family and house have decayed over the decades since the Revolution. And that’s just the beginning. Catalina’s husband Virgil is handsome yet strangely menacing. Florence, the sister-in-law, is distant, cold, and lays out the rules: no smoking, no hot water for bathing, no electric light, and no disturbing Catalina (who has been diagnosed with tuberculosis, which doesn’t track with her symptoms). Her son Francis is a mild-mannered young man who might be Noemí’s friend, but he’s under his mother’s thumb. And the family patriarch, Howard….well, Howard is the source of almost all content warnings for this book. (CW for discussion of suicide, body horror, eugenics, sexual assault, and those are the ones I can remember off the top of my head.)

After a few days of making herself a nuisance – and having ever-more disturbing dreams – Noemí has enough information to determine that she has to get herself and Catalina away from High Place and this dangerous family. But will the house let them go? (Yeah, you read that right!)

There are so many excellent, weird, creepy parts to Mexican Gothic. The isolated, creepy house, the chilling housekeeper, the magnetic yet menacing husband (all the best parts of Rebecca) mixed up with Guillermo del Toro’s Crimson Peak in the vividly decaying house and the uniquely British obsession with family history but set in 1950s Mexico. Noemí’s interactions with the Doyle family get stranger and scarier and more complex. Then a little “weird nature” like in Jeff VanderMeer’s Annihilation gets into the mix and the story goes WILD (I don’t eat mushrooms and thank God for that). Mexican Gothic is solid Gothic horror. I LOVED IT (it also gave me major book hangover). Another contender for best book of the year.

Mexican Gothic is out now!

Dear FTC: I read a digital galley of this book from the publisher via NetGalley.
stuff I read

Becoming Duchess Goldblatt: A Memoir by Duchess Goldblatt

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Summary from Goodreads:
Part memoir and part joyful romp through the fields of imagination, the story behind a beloved pseudonymous Twitter account reveals how a writer deep in grief rebuilt a life worth living.

Becoming Duchess Goldblatt is two stories: that of the reclusive real-life writer who created a fictional character out of loneliness and thin air, and that of the magical Duchess Goldblatt herself, a bright light in the darkness of social media. Fans around the world are drawn to Her Grace’s voice, her wit, her life-affirming love for all humanity, and the fun and friendship of the community that’s sprung up around her.

@DuchessGoldblat (81 year-old literary icon, author of An Axe to Grind) brought people together in her name: in bookstores, museums, concerts, and coffee shops, and along the way, brought real friends home—foremost among them, Lyle Lovett.

“The only way to be reliably sure that the hero gets the girl at the end of the story is to be both the hero and the girl yourself.” — Duchess Goldblatt

How to describe Duchess Goldblatt? You either know who/what she is because you’re a Twitter follower or you don’t.

So, if you need an introduction, Duchess Goldblatt is a semi-fictional character, a social media profile created by an anonymous woman that appears to be an elderly woman, represented by a 17th century portrait, who dispenses sage, silly, and lovely bon mots and advice on Twitter.

Becoming Duchess Goldblatt, by Duchess’s still-anonymous creator, details how Duchess came to be, at a time when her creator was spiraling after a number of personal crises: the breakup of her marriage, shared custody of her only child, the loss of a job. She also details the death of her father during her college years, her fraught relationship with her mother, and her only sibling’s self-destructive mental illness. If family troubles like these are triggering for you, there are a couple chapters you might need to skip through; CW also for talk of suicide.

But in between the creator’s memoir, we get the memoir of Duchess Goldblatt, the matriarch of Crooked Path, as she grew in Twitter visibility and gained ever more famous followers (Lyle Lovett has become a friend to both Duchess and her creator). Her creator has maintained her anonymity – with few exceptions – and, you know what? It doesn’t really matter if we know everything about Duchess’s creator or not. We don’t need to know who thought up Secular Pie Thursday on Thanksgiving, as a way to stave off loneliness, only that Secular Pie Thursday exists as a bright spot on a holiday that might be rough for some people. I think that’s the greatest gift of Duchess’s creation – that even in her creator’s darkest moment, she found a way to give light to others and bring light into herself.

Long live Duchess Goldblatt.

Becoming Duchess Goldblatt is available today!

Dear FTC: I read a digital galley of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss.

Romantic Reads · stuff I read

Boyfriend Material by Alexis Hall

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Summary from Goodreads:
Wanted:
One (fake) boyfriend
Practically perfect in every way

Luc O’Donnell is tangentially–and reluctantly–famous. His rock star parents split when he was young, and the father he’s never met spent the next twenty years cruising in and out of rehab. Now that his dad’s making a comeback, Luc’s back in the public eye, and one compromising photo is enough to ruin everything.

To clean up his image, Luc has to find a nice, normal relationship…and Oliver Blackwood is as nice and normal as they come. He’s a barrister, an ethical vegetarian, and he’s never inspired a moment of scandal in his life. In other words: perfect boyfriend material. Unfortunately apart from being gay, single, and really, really in need of a date for a big event, Luc and Oliver have nothing in common. So they strike a deal to be publicity-friendly (fake) boyfriends until the dust has settled. Then they can go their separate ways and pretend it never happened.

But the thing about fake-dating is that it can feel a lot like real-dating. And that’s when you get used to someone. Start falling for them. Don’t ever want to let them go.

I’m not sure what I was expecting for Alexis Hall’s new Sourcebooks Casablanca release, Boyfriend Material, but it definitely wasn’t a hilarious rom-com narrated by Luc, a neurotic, paparazzi-averse twenty-something. His parents are rock-star famous but his dad walked out when he was three. Luc accidentally gets some (more) bad tabloid press, which affects his fund-raising job at a coleoptera charity – hilariously acronymed CRAPP – and must acquire a respectable, “proper” boyfriend ASAP. He gets set-up with Oliver, a very, very respectable, upstanding barrister with a stable, very staid, acceptable, non-paparazzi-bait lifestyle (incidentally, Oliver is also incredibly hot in his three-piece suits). So they agree to fake date – Oliver will appear in some “good” paparazzi photos and attend the Beetle Drive as Luc’s plus-one and Luc will come to Oliver’s parents’ ruby wedding anniversary do. (FAKE DATING, WHEE!!!!) So when does fake dating – involving sweet dinners at vegan pop-up restaurants, glass sculpture exhibits, quick lunches by the Gladstone statue, and meeting Luc’s batty-but-sweet mom Odile and her “special” curry and her mad-as-pants bestie Judy – become real dating with vulnerability and feelings and OMG PANIC??

Much of Boyfriend Material is Luc freaking out about feelings and learning to have feelings and be an adult and then maybe learning that Oliver isn’t quite as put-together as he thought. The entirety of the book is narrated from Luc’s perspective which makes his journey from panicked, emotionally-fraught bellend back to functional-ish adult feel very intimate and personal. You are 100% in Luc’s corner as the reader even if you want to bonk him over the head for being such a twerp on occasion. It also helps some of the tension in the plot, since it keeps Oliver’s point-of-view off the table throughout the book. When you hit the point-of-no return in this plot, when Oliver also to meet Luc halfway emotionally, it is delicious in the resolution.

Luc has a turn-of-phrase that had me snort-laughing in many places. For serious. On Luc’s and Oliver’s first “date” Oliver, who is a criminal defense attorney, says Luc can ask him that question that people always ask. Luc panics and asks if Oliver ever has sex in the wig….I died. Because that definitely isn’t the question Oliver is thinking of. Hall also absolutely shreds upper-class posh manners. One of his work colleagues is a posh twit, with an even posher, twittier girlfriend, who is a walking punchline about the declining mental acuity of the British landed aristocracy. There is a running joke about “dick pics” that includes the deepest deep cut from The Slipper and the Rose, a Cinderella musical from the 1970s (I screamed in delight, I love that movie). There’s a birthday party with Oliver’s friends that is delightful and then there is Luc’s friend group who are the absolute best, loveable friends who are there for him throughout the book despite said bellend-ness (and they’re hilarious).

I’m going to give a content warning, delightful though this book is. Both Luc and Oliver experience some really garbage casual homophobia – that very casual upper-class British kind that approves of being a Good Gay and not a Bad Gay. There is also an instance of really, really shitty casual homophobia (look, three out of four of Luc’s and Oliver’s parents are garbage, two of them because of said homophobia among other things). Given that this is an #ownvoices novel from Alexis Hall, I think this experience is probably fairly true to life, unfortunate as it is. I trust how Hall has shown how these situations play out. But it doesn’t make it any easier to read especially since Luc and Oliver are so likeable.

The steam level is low-boil/fade-to-black but definitely not G-rated. It definitely fits with this couple. Oliver is a character who doesn’t have casual sex and Luc is trying to turn his relationship-status around. A more descriptive type of sex scene would feel intrusive in this book. (For reference, the only other Alexis Hall book I’ve read is For Real which is SO HOT that I was sure my face was going to catch on fire during one scene, the pie scene. You know the one.)

I would love to see this adapted for a movie. My brain has already cast Matthew Goode and Matthew Rhys as Oliver and Luc (look, Matt Rhys always looks vaguely nervous about something IRL and I shipped them hard in Death Comes to Pemberley) although they’re twenty years too old. I would also accept as Luc the guy who plays Jaskier in The Witcher, Joey Batey, who is both closer to the right age and can handle Luc’s humor but I’m not sure who would match him for Oliver then.

Boyfriend Material is out tomorrow, July 7!!

Dear FTC: I read a digital galley of this book from the publisher via NetGalley – but our finished copies arrived at the store on Friday while I was finishing this review so OF COURSE I have already purchased one.

Romantic Reads · stuff I read

The Lost and Found Bookshop by Susan Wiggs

Summary from Goodreads:

In this thought-provoking, wise and emotionally rich novel, New York Times bestselling author Susan Wiggs explores the meaning of happiness, trust, and faith in oneself as she asks the question, “If you had to start over, what would you do and who would you be?”

There is a book for everything . . .. Somewhere in the vast Library of the Universe, as Natalie thought of it, there was a book that embodied exactly the things she was worrying about.

In the wake of a shocking tragedy, Natalie Harper inherits her mother’s charming but financially strapped bookshop in San Francisco. She also becomes caretaker for her ailing grandfather Andrew, her only living relative—not counting her scoundrel father.

But the gruff, deeply kind Andrew has begun displaying signs of decline. Natalie thinks it’s best to move him to an assisted living facility to ensure the care he needs. To pay for it, she plans to close the bookstore and sell the derelict but valuable building on historic Perdita Street, which is in need of constant fixing. There’s only one problem–Grandpa Andrew owns the building and refuses to sell. Natalie adores her grandfather; she’ll do whatever it takes to make his final years happy. Besides, she loves the store and its books provide welcome solace for her overwhelming grief.

After she moves into the small studio apartment above the shop, Natalie carries out her grandfather’s request and hires contractor Peach Gallagher to do the necessary and ongoing repairs. His young daughter, Dorothy, also becomes a regular at the store, and she and Natalie begin reading together while Peach works. To Natalie’s surprise, her sorrow begins to dissipate as her life becomes an unexpected journey of new connections, discoveries and revelations, from unearthing artifacts hidden in the bookshop’s walls, to discovering the truth about her family, her future, and her own heart.

I’d never read Susan Wiggs before but The Lost and Found Bookshop came across my radar in the HarperCollins catalog. Romance set in a bookstore? Sign me up! It was a fun read. I liked this book, but I didn’t LOVE it like I wanted to.

There’s a lot going on here. Natalie suffers the dual loss of her mom and her boyfriend in the same plane crash, but then also finds that her mom’s bookshop in San Fransisco is almost a complete financial loss and her grandfather is very slowly eroding away as dementia sets in. The handyman her mother hired to do the urgent repairs on the historic building (Peach) turns out to be a competent, (very) attractive, book-reading guy with a cute book-obsessed kid. Plus there’s a lot of family history to discover in the building since it dates back to before the 1906 earthquake. So there’s a lot to work with. The storyline of Natalie’s grandfather, Andrew, and his POV chapters are handled so well, with great sensitivity to both how he feels as his memory slips more and more and also the stress it places on Natalie to care for him as he “relives” her mother’s death every time he forgets and remembers.

But the book felt a little flat to me. There’s a secondary character, a middle-grade author, introduced to give Peach some competition in the “love interest” department. That guy has a secret that, when it was finally revealed, I found very hard to believe that it hadn’t been leaked already due to the Rick Riordan-level of fame the guy had. Consequently, so much time is spent with Guy B that the actual romance with Peach is crammed into the very end of the book. So it’s a very slow burn that could have used a lot more pining and spending time with each other alone, in my opinion (i.e. at no point did I want to yell “just kiss you dorks” at the book). I also felt that the author didn’t follow through on some details. It’s noted that Natalie has the kind of abs you only get from yoga class – but we never see her take a yoga class or any sort of physical activity of any kind (I don’t recall her ever thinking about it, even to lament being too exhausted to bother with exercise or missing space for a daily yoga practice or something). And then late in the book some weed is smoked without ever referencing this before (look, the weed is fine, they are in San Francisco, but it just felt out of left field particularly when it’s noted Natalie finished off her mom’s Ambien prescription earlier in the book). And so on. These are little nitpicky things because they feel tacked on as a way to try and flesh out character. They pulled me out of the scene like snagging my finger on a splinter.

So there were a lot of pieces of this book I really liked, but they didn’t all fit together in the most satisfying way for me.

The Lost and Found Bookshop is out July 7!

Dear FTC: I read a paper galley of this book that we received at the store in our last galley box before COVID19 hit.
mini-review · Reading Graphically · stuff I read

Everything Is an Emergency: An OCD Story in Words Pictures by Jason Adam Katzenstein

Summary from Goodreads: A New Yorker cartoonist illustrates his lifelong struggle with OCD in cartoon vignettes frank and funny

Jason Adam Katzenstein is just trying to live his life, but he keeps getting sidetracked by his over-active, anxious brain. Mundane events like shaking hands or sharing a drink snowball into absolute catastrophes. Jason has Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, a mental illness that compels him to perform rituals in order to protect himself from dangers that don’t really exist. He checks, washes, over-thinks, rinse, repeat. 

He does his best to hide his embarrassing compulsions, and sometimes this even works. He grows up, worries about his first kiss, falls in love with making cartoons, moves to New York City — which is magical and gross, etc. All the while, half his energy goes into living his life, while the other half is devoted to the increasingly ridiculous rituals he’s decided to maintain to keep himself from fully short-circuiting. Then, he fully short-circuits. At his absolute lowest, Jason finally decides to do the things he’s always been told to do to get better: exposure therapy and medication. These are the things that have always freaked him out, and they continue to freak him out. Also, they help him recover. 

Everything is an Emergency is a comic about all the self-destructive stories someone tells himself, over and over, until they start to seem true. In images surreal, witty, and confessional, Jason shows us that OCD can be funny, even when it feels like it’s ruining your life.

Everything is an Emergency is a nice comic collection from a cartoonist who illustrates his own journey with severe OCD and anxiety. It’s not quite a full graphic memoir – Katzenstein is a cartoonist who published in The New Yorker so it’s kind of that style, a comic panel per page with some accompanying text. He communicates his experience both in the downward spiral and back through therapy and treatment really well through his drawings. You could probably give this to a teen or perhaps older middle-grader in need of some support although the audience is aimed more for adults. It could have perhaps been a little longer.

Dear FTC: I read a digital galley of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss.
mini-review · Romantic Reads · stuff I read

A Duke, the Lady, and a Baby by Vanessa Riley (Rogues and Remarkable Women #1)

Summary from Goodreads: Created by a shrewd countess, The Widow’s Grace is a secret society with a mission: to help ill-treated widows regain their status, their families, and even find true love again—or perhaps for the very first time…

When headstrong West Indian heiress Patience Jordan questioned her English husband’s mysterious suicide, she lost everything: her newborn son, Lionel, her fortune—and her freedom. Falsely imprisoned, she risks her life to be near her child—until The Widow’s Grace gets her hired as her own son’s nanny. But working for his unsuspecting new guardian, Busick Strathmore, Duke of Repington, has perils of its own. Especially when Patience discovers his military strictness belies an ex-rake of unswerving honor—and unexpected passion…

A wounded military hero, Busick is determined to resolve his dead cousin’s dangerous financial dealings for Lionel’s sake. But his investigation is a minor skirmish compared to dealing with the forthright, courageous, and alluring Patience. Somehow, she’s breaking his rules, and sweeping past his defenses. Soon, between formidable enemies and obstacles, they form a fragile trust—but will it be enough to save the future they long to dare together?

Now, when I started A Duke, the Lady, and a Baby I was a bit nonplussed as to how Patience could get hired as her own child’s nanny/wet nurse without getting outed by the servants – unless the servants were in on it. But, fear not, the problem is easily solved in the first few chapters. Onward.

I’ll go with 3.5 stars out of 5. I liked the story of Patience and Busick and will she be able to get her baby back (plus bag a duke in the process, heyo, it’s a romance novel of course). There was a good mystery plot with excellent tension, although I’m still a little hazy about how the whole finance plot worked but that’s pretty minor. I really liked the historical detail Riley put into Patience’s backstory both as a woman color in pasty, imperial England and her plight as a widow who does not have guardianship of her own child and how this leaves her very, very little (extremely little) legal recourse to baby Lionel. Busick is also a character we rarely see in romance fiction – a hero who has lost a limb in wartime. It affects how he’s treated by others despite his rank as a duke. The romance plot itself is pretty low steam but it’s not chaste. There is definitely kissing and a small number of boob jokes (they’re kind of hilariously bad). I’m looking forward to future books in this series because this was fun.

What kept pulling me out was a structural thing. Patience’s perspective is in first-person while Busick’s perspective is in close third. Switching back and forth like that drives me batty. It just gets in the way of the story. Ymmv, of course.

A Duke, the Lady, and a Baby published in June 30!

Dear FTC: I read a digital galley form the publisher via Netgally.

Romantic Reads · stuff I read

Harbor by Rebekah Weatherspoon (Beards & Bondage #3)

Summary from Goodreads: Betrayed and set adrift…

Months before she’s set to walk down the aisle, assistant district attorney Brooklyn Lewis suffers an unthinkable loss. It’s bad enough her fiancé is violently taken from her, but along with her grief she must also process the fact that the man of her dreams was unfaithful. Friends and family want to see her heal, but Brooklyn doesn’t know how to move on from trauma and deception until she discovers she’s not the only one broken by this tragedy.

A light in the storm…

Attorney Vaughn Coleman and his partner Chris Shaw have also lost the love of their lives, who was found lifeless in the same bed as Brooklyn’s fiancé, taken from them by the same killer.

Unmoored by grief, Brooklyn, Chris, and Vaughn fall into a relationship that both fulfills them and threatens to pull them under the waves of guilt, but they soon realize it may take the love of three people to bring their battered ships back to shore.

*This romance features a polyamorous relationship between two men and a woman, with BDSM overtones*

FEEEEEELINGS. Harbor made me feel alllll the feelings. (Before I get into the review, I will give a brief content warning that the pre-chapter 1/off-page backstory contains cheating by romantic partners and death of romantic partners; there is also homophobia/kink-shaming on the page/related by characters’ family members.)

The Beards & Bondage series (Haven, Sanctuary) concludes with an expertly-written poly/menage BDSM romance between three people brought together by the violent deaths of their romantic partners. Vaughn and Shaw lost their partner Corrine and Brooklyn lost her fiance Josh when Corrine and Josh were murdered by Corrine’s stalker – while they were together romantically. The affair was revealed during the police investigation which complicates the survivors’ grief. In a meeting after the funerals, Vaughn, Shaw, and Brook feel an immediate emotional connection, but Brook chooses to walk away for the time being. Getting involved in her dead fiance’s lover’s partners’ lives is messed up, right? Maybe? No? Over a year later, she contacts the two men, deciding that perhaps she would like to explore their connection and see if there is more in the relationship than just bonding over shared trauma.

Each book in this series turns on the trauma-bonding between the main characters but I really feel like Rebekah excelled in this book, giving each character time to explore his or her own grief and trauma and wants and needs as the relationship progressed. The attention to detail in how Brook processed trauma versus Vaughn versus Shaw made them feel like actual real people processing their emotions right in front of me. The action of Harbor also takes place over a considerable time period – almost eighteen months prior to the epilogue – which really lends to the reality of this romance and allowed the characters to bond as people and also develop the trust needed in a BDSM relationship. The BDSM scenes, while certainly explicit, are exquisitely written. Rebekah could give a masterclass in how to make a scene hotter than hot but without using awkward euphemisms. The banter between each character was also so well-done. Brook and Vaughn converse differently than Brook and Shaw and Shaw and Vaughn, being in a long-term relationship, have their own conversational tics. Then you have Brook and her sister Liz – who is amazing in Sanctuary, do recommend. Nothing feels artificial – like I said, everyone feels like a real person instead of an invented character in a book.

Poly romances in general are harder to me to get into because it feels like – in my head – there are too many people and emotions to keep track of. I did not have this issue with Harbor – each character’s motivations and needs are very clear and they all worked together toward a beautifully satisfying emotional outcome. I also want to stress the significance of having three Black romantic main characters – including a plus-sized Black woman being worshipped by two gorgeous men – on the page. Mainstream romance publishing still hasn’t quite got the memo on diversity of all kinds, so Harbor is self-published. I can’t order in paperbacks of Harbor to sell in my store, at least not yet, but I can tell you to go buy Rebekah’s books via your e-book retailer of choice and use your dollars to show that a polyamorous romance with Black characters is what you want in your romance reading.

Harbor released on Tuesday, June 30, and if you haven’t yet read Haven and Sanctuary pick those up two and have yourself a wild reading weekend.

Dear FTC: I read a copy of this book that I purchased on my Nook.
Reading Graphically · stuff I read

The Great Gatsby: The Graphic Novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald, adapted by Fred Fordham with illustrations by Aya Morton

Summary from Goodreads: A gorgeously illustrated, first-ever graphic novel adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s beloved American classic.

First published in 1925, The Great Gatsby has been acclaimed by generations of readers and is now reimagined in stunning graphic novel form. Jay Gatsby, Nick Carraway, Daisy Buchanan, and the rest of the cast are captured in vivid and evocative illustrations by artist Aya Morton. The iconic text has been artfully distilled by Fred Fordham, who also adapted the graphic novel edition of To Kill a Mockingbird. Blake Hazard, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s great-granddaughter, contributes a personal introduction.

This quintessential Jazz Age tale stands as the supreme achievement of Fitzgerald’s career and is a true classic of 20th-century literature. The story of the mysteriously wealthy Gatsby and his love for the beautiful Daisy is exquisitely captured in this enchanting and unique edition.

This is a good adaptation of The Great Gatsby. The text adaptation was done by the same writer who did the To Kill a Mockingbird: A Graphic Novel adaptation. The art by Aya Morton is very pretty. It looks so much like a vintage greeting card or advertisement but the pastel colors felt very flat when seen on the actual paper page. They looked much brighter in the digital galley that I read. A few panels seemed inspired by some of the movie adaptations. Late in the book there is a chapter told from the point of view of Mr. Wilson and that’s definitely a scene I don’t remember from the original novel since the narrative is told entirely from Nick’s perspective (and I’ve read the book several times).

The Great Gatsby: The Graphic Novel is out now!

Dear FTC: I read a digital galley of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss.