The Beautiful and Damned, first published by Scribner's in 1922, is F. Scott Fitzgerald's second novel. It portrays the Eastern elite during the Jazz Age, exploring New York café society. As in Fitzgerald's other novels, the characters are complex, especially with respect to marriage and intimacy. The book is believed to be largely based on Fitzgerald's relationship with Zelda Fitzgerald
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This edition includes a detailed account of the composition of the novel, a textual apparatus, a chronology of composition, and, uniquely, three versions of the ending. Explanatory notes situate The Beautiful and Damned in its times and deepen the reader's understanding of Fitzgerald's sources for the novel.From the Inside Flap:
Following the great critical and financial success of his first novel, This Side of Paradise, F. Scott Fitzgerald published The Beautiful and the Damned in 1922. An immediate success upon its first publication, Fitzgerald's second novel is a dazzling portrait of love and life among the beautiful people. Through the story of two newlyweds, Anthony Patch of New York and Gloria Gilbert of Kansas City, Fitzgerald flawlessly captures the heady atmosphere and jaded values of the Jazz Age. Patch, expecting to become the sole heir to his grandfather's millions, embraces a life of endless parties and intellectual pretensions. In Gloria, he finds an exquisite ornament and a passionate lover. The couple whirls through days that mirror Fitzgerald's own--a fast life amid a smart set for which there is never enough cash. Beginning with wit and clever repartee, The Beautiful and the Damned quickly becomes a scathing chronicle of a dying marriage and a hedonistic society where beauty is all too fleeting. Through the character of Richard Caramel, a successful hack writer whose talent fails as he prospers, Fitzgerald caricatures himself. But today's readers will find an even more poignant self-portrait of Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda in Anthony and Gloria, a couple whose days of wine and roses fade quickly toward a tragic end.
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