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The Great Gatsby (Penguin Readers Level 3)
Age Range: 12 – 17 years
Everybody wants to know Jay Gatsby. He is handsome and very rich. He owns a big house, and he has wonderful parties there. But after the music and dancing, does anybody really know who Jay Gatsby is? This is a story of love, money, and secrets.
Penguin Readers is a series of popular classics, exciting contemporary fiction, and thought-provoking non-fiction written for learners of English as a foreign language. Beautifully illustrated and carefully adapted, the series introduces language learners around the world to the bestselling authors and most compelling content from Penguin Random House. The eight levels of Penguin Readers follow the Common European Framework and include language activities that help readers to develop key skills.
The Great Gatsby, a Level 3 Reader, is A2 in the CEFR framework. The text is made up of sentences with up to three clauses, introducing first conditional, past continuous and present perfect simple for general experience. It is well supported by illustrations, which appear on most pages.
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Among the “Lost Generation” of writers that came of age during the Roaring Twenties, the work of F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896–1940) epitomized “The Jazz Age”: a period of declining traditional values, prohibition and speakeasies, and great artistic leaps. Fitzgerald’s first novel, This Side of Paradise, was a financial success, but subsequent ones, including his masterpiece, The Great Gatsby, sold poorly. In need of money, he turned to writing commercial short stories and Hollywood scripts, while his lifelong alcoholism destroyed his health and led to an early death. The 1945 reissue of The Great Gatsby spurred a wide resurgence of interest, and Fitzgerald is now considered one of the greatest American writers of the twentieth century.