Flashback Friday is my own little weekly tradition, in which I pick a book from my reading past to highlight. If you’d like to join in, here are the Flashback Friday book selection guidelines:
- Has to be something you’ve read yourself
- Has to still be available, preferably still in print
- Must have been originally published 5 or more years ago
Other than that, the sky’s the limit! Join me, please, and let us all know: what are the books you’ve read that you always rave about? What books from your past do you wish EVERYONE would read? Pick something from five years ago, or go all the way back to the Canterbury Tales if you want. It’s Flashback Friday time!
My picks for this week’s Flashback Friday:
The Basil and Josephine Stories by F. Scott Fitzgerald
(Stories first written from 1928 – 1931; collection published 1962)
Fourteen of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s best-loved and most beguiling stories, together in a single volume In 1928, while struggling with his novel Tender Is the Night, Fitzgerald began writing a series of stories about Basil Duke Lee, a fictionalized version of his younger self. Drawing on his childhood and adolescent experiences, Fitzgerald wrote nine tales that were published in the Saturday Evening Post about his life from the time he was an eleven-year-old boy living in Buffalo, New York, until he entered Princeton University in 1913. Then from 1930 to 1931, with Tender Is the Night still unfinished, Fitzgerald wrote five more stories (also published in the Post) that centered around Josephine Perry, Basil’s female counterpart. Although Fitzgerald intended to combine the fourteen Basil Lee and Josephine Perry stories into a single work, he never succeeded in doing so in his lifetime. Here, The Basil and Josephine Stories brings together in one volume the complete set, resulting in one of Fitzgerald’s most charming and evocative works.
F. Scott Fitzgerald is certainly having a moment, isn’t he? Between the soon-to-be-released movie extravaganza of The Great Gatsby and the newly published Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler, there’s an absolute Fitzgerald revival going on right now. Which got me to thinking… Yes, I read The Great Gatsby in high school, just like everyone else. I also, at various times, read This Side of Paradise, The Beautiful and the Damned, and Tender Is the Night. But the Fitzgerald work that has really stuck with me over the years is the collection of stories found here in The Basil and Josephine Stories. These stories, focusing on two young, privileged characters and their pursuits and struggles, beautifully convey a time and a society that continue to fascinate. This is one story collection that I don’t mind reading, over and over again.
So, what’s your favorite blast from the past? Leave a tip for your fellow booklovers!
Note from your friendly Bookshelf Fantasies host: To join the Flashback Friday fun, write a blog post about a book you love and share your link below. Don’t have a blog post to share? Then share your favorite oldie-but-goodie in the comments section. Jump in!