Wednesday, April 30, 2014

C&LM: The Lees of Happiness-F.Scott Fitzgerald

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Last year when the Gatsby craze happened, I realized I had not read any other Fitzgerald books and I felt a little guilty. I've re-read Gatsby every summer for many years now, but I decided it was time to expand my knowledge of his works. I've read two of his novels, The Last Tycoon and This Side of Paradise, and recently I came across The Lees of Happiness which you can actually read online for free! This is a short story that was published in the Chicago Tribune. It centers around a couple named Jeffrey and Roxanne. Jeffrey is a struggling author and Roxanne is an actress. Their friend Harry comes to visit and Roxanne attempts to make biscuits and they turn out so badly that they nail them to the wall. Jeffrey has a stroke before he can write his grand masterpiece and lives for another 11 years as Roxanne cares for him and her career wanes as well. Harry visits periodically and we learn his wife leaves him. He and Roxanne remain friends.

I was not expecting a story called The Lees of Happiness to be this depressing, but I didn't realize that "lees" was not their last name, but that it meant "sediment, dregs" according to, so that makes more sense that they were supposed to be struggling to get to happiness. Unfortunately, it didn't seem to me that they did ever find happiness, I suppose Roxanne and Harry became friends so that was good? I don't know. I thought it was okay, let's say a 3/5.

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