The Great Gatsby

Chapter 1

Summary

Nick Carroway is introduced to the story as the narrator. It tells how Nick has a job as a bond businessman and he eventually comes to rent a house in West Egg.

Tom Buchanan

Tom is very educated and talented but he isn't a good husband. He cheats on his wife and is rough with her. He is also arrogant and dishonest.

Tom is significant in the way that he is Daisy's husband and because he is disloyal to her which could cause something to happen in the plot later on.

Quote

“I hope she’ll be a fool—that’s the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool” (17).

I think this quote is significant because Daisy hopes that her daughter will be a beautiful fool, most likely in hopes that she can live through life without thinking about things too much, but getting by because she's beautiful.

Chapter 2

Summary

Tom takes Nich to visit his mistress, Myrtle. They have a party at a motel with Myrtle's sister and the McKee couple. The language of the party gets a little sketchy after everyone is intoxicated and Nick doesn't feel comfortable, but stays.

Myrtle

Myrtle is Wilson's wife and seems to be a desperate person. Nick thinks she's sensuous even though she's a little heavy-set.

She is important in the story because she is the person Tom is cheating on Daisy with and this could potentially cause changes later on in the story.

Quote

"Though I was curious to see her, I had no desire to meet her- but I did" (24). When Tom takes Nick to meet his mistress, he's of two minds on meeting her. He's curious about her because Tom always mentions her, but doesn't really want to meet her because it's the lady who Tom is cheating on Daisy with but he meets her anyway.

Chapter 3

Summary

Gatsby is known around the area because he throws very elaborate parties and spends a lot of money on them and Nick is invited to one. While at the party, Nick hears people gossiping and spreading rumors about Gatsby and how he got his money and different scenarios about how Gatsby lives his life. Nick later meets a man who had served in the war with him and it ends up being Jay Gatsby. He also becomes attracted to Jordan Baker.

Jordan Baker

She had a friend name Lucille who thinks that Gatsby was a German spy in the war. Jordan herself is rather dishonest and deceitful. Even though she is a pro golfer, she cheated in her first golf tournament and Nick thinks she's the most dishonest person he's met.

Jordan is an important character in the story so far because Nick is starting to care for her and this could be immensely important to the events of the plot.

Quote

"He had one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life" (48). I think this had a lot of significance because it showed a lot of vibrant wording. The fact that his smile was one of those that you see very rarely throughout life and that the narrator recognized it as such is very important.

Chapter 4

Summary

Gatsby goes through things that he's done throughout his life and Nick doesn't believe him at first. Gatsby eventually shows him proof that he's actually done those things. It is also revealed that Gatsby and Daisy had been in love with each other years before. Gatsby sets up and elaborate plan to have Daisy over to have tea with him without her knowing it.

Daisy

Daisy is a quiet person so that people have to lean in to hear her. She is very complex. She has a terrible marriage with Tom because he cheats on her but she's loyal to him even though she loves Gatsby.

She plays an important role in the story just because of the fact that her and Gatsby had history.

Quote

"So my first impression, that he was a person of some undefined consequence, had gradually faded and he had become simply the proprietor of and elaborate road-house next door" (64). Nick has this thought and it suggests that Nick had that Gatsby was some type of deep person who was well balanced and significant. Nick figures out that Gatsby is actually just a normal person who just had a lot of money.

Chapter 5

Summary

Nick comes home from his date with Jordan. While on his way home, he realizes all of the lights at Gatsby's house are on. Gatsby is worried about what might happen at the lunch with Daisy. Daisy and Gatsby

Gatsby

Gatsby is is a rich man who is known for throwing elaborate parties. In person, he's a man who has traveled and who was once in the military. He gets nervous when it comes to the love of his life, Daisy.

He is a main part of the story in part because the book title has his name in it and a lot of the stories mystery is centered around him.

Quote

"The exhilarating ripple of her voice was a wild tonic in the rain" (85).

As previously stated, Daisy has a way of speaking that makes people want to listen to her. She speaks softly and people always lean in to hear what she has to say. This quote suggests that she also has a very pleasant and nice voice that people would want to listen to.

Chapter 6

Summary

This chapter goes through what actually happened in Gatsby's early life and reporters are going crazy over the information. When Nick goes over to Gatsby's because he hadn't seen Daisy or Gatsby in weeks, Nick is surprised to see Tom there. Gatsby hosts another party in which Tom and Daisy and Nick all attend and nobody really has a good time.

Tom Buchanan

He is suspicious of what might be happening between Daisy and Gatsby but he hasn't quite figured out what's going on yet. He doesn't like Gatsby at all and tries to slander him by telling Daisy that Gatsby got wealthy from bootlegging,

Quote

"By God, I may be old-fashioned in my ideas, but women run around too much these days to suit me" (103). Tom Buchanan says this when Gatsby agrees to go to dinner with a lady and her husband. She keeps insisting he go even when her husband was against it, but she ignored him. This shows even more that Tom is very controlling and doesn't like that idea of women having power.

Chapter 7

Summary

Gatsby ends all of his parties and fires all of his staff because those things were originally just to lure Daisy to find him. When Gatsby and Nick go visit Tom and Daisy, Tom is certain about Daisy's and Gatsby's feelings for each other. Tom calls Gatsby a bootlegger and Daisy gets mad and defends him. Later, Nick and Jordan discover an automobile accident and finds out it had been Gatsby and Daisy who had hit Myrtle, and then later on Tom and Daisy reconcile with each other.

Gatsby

In this chapter, Gatsby gets a little desperate for Daisy. He is so stuck on the idea that Daisy will forget her whole life just to be with him and they can be like they were years before. He doesn't really see the consequences of how he's acting.

Quote

"I stared at him and then at Tom, who had made a parallel discovery less than an hour before- and it occurred to me that there was no difference between men, in intelligence or race, so profound as the difference between the sick and the well" (124). This implies that he thinks that the only difference between men is whether or not they are sick or not. Sick maybe as in mentally damaged or not quite emotionally stable. And being well could mean that they are mentally stable.

Chapter 8

Summary

Gatsby admits that he lied about his background to Daisy so that he could impress her. Nick is agonizing about what had happened the previous night with the car accident. Then it shifts to a narrative on what had happened after Myrtle had been killed.

Nick

He's distracted all day and he worries about the accident with Myrtle. He seems to be caring but he doesn't exactly have the best measure of judgement and doesn't know what he should or shouldn't do.

Quote

"But what gave it an air of breathless intensity was that Daisy lived there- it was as casual a thing to her as his tent out at camp was to him" (148). Daisy was used to luxury and wealth and her house astounded him because he was used to living in very poor environments.

Chapter 9

Summary

Gatsby dies and Nick describes what happened. Almost nobody comes to Gatsby's funeral and Nick is angry about that. After this, Nick decides to move back west and break up with Jordan who supposedly gets engaged. Nick reminisces about how he thinks the entire story was about the west.

Nick

Nick goes tells about the later years and when Gatsby died. He tries to arrange a funeral and calls people to come to remember Gatsby. But very little people actually showed up and this frustrated Nick. This shows that he still had compassion for Gatsby and still cared about him regardless of things that had happened.

Quote

"That's my Middle West- not the wheat or the prairies or the lost Swede towns, but the thrilling returning trains of my youth, and the street lamps and sleigh bells in the frosty dark and the shadows of holly wreaths thrown by lighted windows on the snow" (176). He thinks that where he is now is more of the Mid-west than where he actually grew up.