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Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald Hardcover – March 26, 2013
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“Fowler expertly depicts the rapture of the couple's early love, and later, the bullying and sickness that drove them apart…Z zips along addictively.” ―Entertainment Weekly
“[A] richly imagined novel…Here [Zelda's] touching story is also fascinating and funny, it animates an entire era.” ―People
“A gorgeously rendered piece of literary entertainment, not a biography but rather a love story set in the Jazz Age.” ―The Daily News
“A tender, intimate exploration of a complicated woman.” ―Library Journal
“Fowler's Zelda is all we would expect and more…once she meets the handsome Scott, her life takes off on an arc of indulgence and decadence that still causes us to shake our heads in wonder…soirées with Picasso and his mistress, with Cole Porter and his wife, with Gerald and Sara Murphy, Gertrude Stein and Alice B. Toklas, Ezra Pound and Jean Cocteau. Scott's friendship with Hemingway verges on a love affair--at least it's close enough to one to make Zelda jealous. Ultimately, both of these tragic, pathetic and grand characters are torn apart by their inability to love or leave each other. Fowler has given us a lovely, sad and compulsively readable book.” ―Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Fowler renders rich period detal in this portrayal of a fascinating woman both blessed--and cursed--by fame.” ―Booklist
“With lyrical prose, Fowler's Z beautifully portrays the frenzied lives of, and complicated relationship between, Zelda and F. Scott Fitzgerald...This is a novel that will open readers' minds to the life of an often misunderstood woman--one not easily forgotten.” ―RT Book Reviews
“A novel that is as heartbreaking as it is mesmerizing. About love, desire, betrayal, and one extraordinary woman struggling to shine in the world--even as the one she loves best is drawing the shades. Just magnificent.” ―Caroline Leavitt
“A wonderfully engaging read. With crisp dialogue and vivid descriptions, Z delivers both a compelling love story and a poignant tale of a woman coming into her own as an artist.” ―Heidi W. Durrow
“An utterly engrossing portrayal of Zelda Fitzgerald and the legendary circles in which she moved. In the spirit of Loving Frank and The Paris Wife, Therese Anne Fowler shines a light on Zelda instead of her more famous husband, providing both justice and the voice she struggled to have heard in her lifetime.” ―Sara Gruen
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Top Customer Reviews
That said, "Z" is an extraordinary, excellent fictional autobiography that - perhaps for the very first time - opened my eyes to the complicated nuances of the Fitzgeralds' life and marriage. Fowler's Zelda emerges as a complete, likeable flawed heroine - full of energy, love, and independence in an era when women were extremely limited and scandalized for thinking outside the confines of domesticity. At the outset I braced myself for a very critical portrayal of F. Scott Fitzgerald, since it was clear from the outset that Fowler was on Team Zelda. I was pleasantly surprised that Scott is treated quite fairly, characterized as the selfish, drunken genius that he was, firmly entrenched in the period's belief in male superiority. If anyone emerges as the villain here, it is Fitzgerald's friend and rival Ernest Hemingway, who treated quite critically (again, all from Zelda's perspective).
This is the touching, engaging story of a time and the two individuals who defined it. Zelda Fitzgerald is, at long last, a real person with a heart and soul and mind of her own, detached from her more famous husband.Read more ›
Fowler's Zelda is a remarkable character, full of charm and wit and promise. She meets Scott before the publication of his first novel, when he was so young and full of the spirit of adventure that she is captivated in spite of her father's admonition that he will never be able to support her. Their first few years in New York are a whirlwind of social engagements, all-night clubbing, and the undying attention of the media and the public. They seem charmed during those days. But if you know their story, you'll be anticipating what happens next.Read more ›
The problems began when Scott's drinking outpaced his writing, and he struggled month after month, year after year, to get a book finished. Zelda, meanwhile, with gifts of her own in writing, painting and ballet, struggled with resentment that she was relegated to the supportive role of wife and mother to their daughter Scottie.
Was this couple good for each other or did they destroy each other? Perhaps a little of both. Scott's drinking problem needed no encouragement, and Zelda's obsessive personality eventually put her in a Swiss asylum with a diagnosis of schizophrenia. Today, it's believed she was bipolar instead, but whatever the malady, the drinking and high living exacerbated it. There also was the stress associated with Scott's easy come, easy go philosophy about money.
Therese Anne Fowler has written Zelda's story as though she told it herself, so the portrait of her is more sympathetic than others told by people in the Scott camp. Among those was Ernest Hemingway, a close friend of Scott's who wound up hating Zelda (the feeling was mutual) and bad-mouthing them both in his memoir "A Moveable Feast" many years later. "Z" is a well-written, absorbing book that tells Zelda's story as she and Scott navigate the sometimes treacherous waters of fame and professional jealousy.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I loved this book! I learned alot. I love that era and hadn't known anything about F Scott let alone Zelda! I looked this up after watching the pilot on amazon prime. Read morePublished 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
Enjoyed the other side of Fitzgerald's story a great deal. Great writing, intuitive and wise. Loved her imagining of Zelda.Published 8 days ago by Cheri L.
This book was interesting, enlightening and also fun to read. Great insight into life in the 20s and into the possible lives of the Fitzgerald's.Published 16 days ago by Nor Cal
The history seems consistent with other books I've read on the subject.Published 17 days ago by BucksFoodie
I liked this book when I started reading it, but as the Fitzgeralds drank, partied, fought, gambled, spent money across a number of locations, I became more and more depressed. Read morePublished 18 days ago by ahammerquilts