Did you know that April marks the anniversary of the first publishing of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic Jazz Age novel, The Great Gatsby? 91 years ago, this iconic tale of flappers and fabulous parties hit the stands for the first time. Did you also know that it went through several alternate titles including Among Ash-Heaps and Millionaires, Trimalchio in West Egg, Under the Red, White and Blue, and The High-Bouncing Lover (my personal favorite)? The more you know!
But Gatsby-lovers can only re-read the book so many times before they want something new, yet similar, to consume! To celebrate the anniversary of Gatsby’s publication, whether set before, during or after the Roaring Twenties, here are 6 other books that are guaranteed to be great follow-up reads for a roaring good time!
It’s impossible to neglect mention of Scott’s friend (later rival) and fellow legendary writer, Ernest Hemingway. Both of these particular works especially deserve alignment, as they follow the lives of members of the Lost Generation struggling with a search for purpose and fulfillment, love and overcoming the past.
This timeless new novel weaves together the excesses and secrets of the wealthy, a memorable romance and a provocative mystery into a “modern-day Gatsby tale.” Leave West Egg and take a trip to Hollywood, California, where love, despite being irresistible, is not an easy or undamaging pursuit.
Have a taste of another borough in New York in Morrison’s novel Jazz, which takes place both during the Harlem Renaissance and the Antebellum South (jumping between the two). Taking cues from the most memorable Renaissance man Langston Hughes, who wrote poetry to rhythmically parallel the musical inflections of jazz, Morrison does the same in her book, modeling her rhetoric the same way jazz artists improvise and ramble in their music.
Amor Towles’ debut novel was widely lauded as comparable to The Great Gatsby, also set in New York (though in 1938) with a wealthy, enigmatic banker strongly reminiscent of Jay Gatsby, a female protagonist who also resembles Nick Carroway and a story that confronts the realities (and consequences) of pursuing the American Dream.
Another classic that echoes the same themes of shallow living, disillusionment about the Great War and making the wrong choices in love as The Great Gatsby, this artwork of a book is well worth reading for those who want something just as punchy (and depressing) as the latter.
Rowley’s new novel is a modern take on examining wealth and privilege, relationships and letting go of the past—all things not unfamiliar to the Gatsby tale. It’s a lovely, lighter story that still resonates and maintains unmistakable depth and of course, to top it all off, takes place in beautiful New York City.
What’s the book you’ll turn to after reading The Great Gatsby? Share with us in the comments below!