THE PRICE WAS HIGH: The Last Uncollected Stories of F. Scott Fitzgerald by F. Scott Fitzgerald

THE PRICE WAS HIGH: The Last Uncollected Stories of F. Scott Fitzgerald

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Here are all but seven of the magazine short stories that Fitzgerald never wanted to see between boards. And this book is fat enough to do damage if you're tempted, as we were, to hit yourself in the head with it--sick with pity, exasperation, and confusion at the sight of history (in the guise of the ever-voracious Prof. Bruccoli) driving the final nail into an author's corpus that already groans for mercy under the weight of unfair attention. We learn here exactly how much Soctt made from McCall's and Redbook and The Saturday Evening Post for each of these stories. Which novel was put down to write them. How much he detested their formulaic boy-meets-girl, then happy-ironic-ending piffle. With the exception of only one story, a football one--""The Bowl""--this is Fitzgerald trading upon what was closest at hand: the softest parts of his style and the most myopic contemporaneities; churned out under obligation, not a single one of these stories takes the time to stand back and really achieve the pause, gravity, and sweetness of Fitzgerald's best work. Toward the end, after Tender is the Night, the story-making got terribly desperate: a series about 9th-century France--execrable--and a gaggle of doctor/nurse romances (sad, unwitting reflections of personal depression). Strictly for the ghoulish and the ultra-scholarly, this compendium spits out the evidence of what Fitzgerald meant when, in the Notebooks, he complained: ""It grows increasingly harder to write because there is much less weather than when I was a boy and practically no men and women at all.

Pub Date: Jan. 5th, 1978
Publisher: Jovanovich