Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

3.85 (45,658 ratings by Goodreads)
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'If ever a couple ... became an era, it was F Scott Fitzgerald and his glamorous "flapper" wife, Zelda. They were the Jazz Age' Independent

When beautiful, reckless Southern belle Zelda Sayre meets F. Scott Fitzgerald at a country club dance in 1918, she is seventeen and he is a young army lieutenant. Before long, Zelda has fallen for him, even though Scott isn't wealthy or prominent or even a Southerner and keeps insisting, absurdly, that his writing will bring him both fortune and fame. When he sells his first novel, she optimistically boards a train to New York, to marry him and take the rest as it comes.

What comes, here at the dawn of the Jazz Age, is unimagined success and celebrity that will make Scott and Zelda legends in their own time. Each place they go becomes a playground:New York City, Long Island, Hollywood, Paris, and the French Riviera - where they join the endless party of the glamorous, sometimes doomed Lost Generation that includes Ernest Hemingway, Sara and Gerald Murphy, and Gertrude Stein.

Everything seems new and possible, but not even Jay Gatsby's parties go on forever. Who is Zelda, other than the wife of a famous - sometimes infamous - husband? With brilliant insight and imagination, Therese Anne Fowler brings us Zelda's irresistible story as she herself might have told it.

'Utterly compulsive reading' Stylist
'Brilliant' Daily Mail
'Superb' Independent

*Therese Anne Fowler's bestselling novel of the Gilded Age, A Well-Behaved Woman, is out now*
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Product details

  • Paperback | 384 pages
  • 131 x 197 x 25mm | 259g
  • Two Roads
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • None
  • 1444761439
  • 9781444761436
  • 58,987

Review Text

If ever a couple ... became an era, it was F Scott Fitzgerald and his glamorous "flapper" wife, Zelda. They were the Jazz Age. Independent
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Review quote

A novel that is as hearbreaking as it is mesmerizing. Just magnificent. * Caroline Leavitt, author of PICTURES OF YOU * Fowler's richly imagined portrait of the Jazz Age's literary royalty is 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, author of THE GIRL WHO FELL FROM THE SKY * Fowler renders rich period detail in this portrayal of a fascinating woman both blessed - and cursed - by fame. * Booklist * From her youth as the belle of Montgomery to the heady early days of marriage to the inevitable breakdowns, Fowler chronicles Zelda's incredible life with sympathy and compassion. * Bookpage * Fowler portrays a softer, more anxious Zelda, but loveable nonetheless, whose world is one of textured sensuality. * Publishers Weekly * Though there are many biographies of the Fitzgeralds, Fowler's well-researched fictional account provides a tender, intimate exploration of a complicated and captivating woman ... Fowler's detailed prose will certainly spark fresh interest in the most famous couple of the Roaring Twenties. * Library Journal * What Fowler so masterfully achieves in Z is a thoughtful portrait of a woman who might not have been as 'crazy' as we all had been led to believe, but one who was constantly disregarded by a jealous and narcissistic husband. * Book Reporter * Fowler's Zelda is all we would expect and more... Fowler has given us a lovely, sad and compulsively readable book. * Kirkus (starred review) * Narrated by Fowler's imagined voice of Zelda Fitzgerald, this is the touching and ultimately tragic love story of Zelda and her husband, F Scott Fitzgerald. Like much of their life, reality played like an F Scott Fitzgerald novel - full of glamour, alcohol and bad behaviour. This is an engrossing read of celebrity life. In some ways the story is specific to the between the war years and that fascinating creative group of writers and artists. In particular the opportunities for women beyond the role of home-maker drew Zelda and frustrated Scott. In other ways, perhaps things haven't changed that much as bright starts shine and burn out. Amy Winehouse anyone? * Bookbag * Sassy, witty and compulsively readable, Z is destined to put Fowler on the literary map. * Weekend Herald (NZ) * Thoughtful and emotionally charged, Z is a mesmerising piece of fiction that brings to life an era and the set of people who defined it. Faithfully researched, written with brio and style, it is a must-read for Fitzgerald obsessives but should also captivate readers coming new to the legend. * New Zealand Herald * Z is a fictional account of Zelda Fitzgerald's life - giving voice to the determined, intelligent and vibrant woman who struggled to find her identity in the shadow of her husband, whose demons challenged them both with heartbreaking consequences. An unforgettable read. * Australian Woman's Weekly * Captures the playful, deeply loving, sexy relationship between the young Fitzgeralds. * Huffington Post * Beautifully and powerfully drawn . . . crackles with energy. * Irish Times * A must-read. * Marie Claire * A gorgeously rendered piece of literary entertainment, not a biography but rather a love story set in the Jazz Age. * New York Daily News * Zips along addictively and exposes the dark side of artistic ambition. * Entertainment Weekly * A thrilling read. * Stylist.co.uk * In her new novel Z, Fowler draws a compellingly complete portrait of that other Paris (and New York and St. Paul and Long Island) wife: mother, painter, writer, flapper, feminist Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald. * USA Today * A treat. * Sunday Times Style * Fowler articulates the story of Zelda in the first person, encapsulating her struggle exquisitely. She amplifies Zelda's whisper into a lion's roar. Our girl finally gets the justice, autonomy, and recognition she so desperately craved in her lifetime. The era is projected in full technicolour and makes for utterly compulsive reading. * Stylist * A must-read . . . Fowler's take on Zelda Fitzgerald is both empowering and desperately sad as she strips away the rumour and damnation to reveal a portrait of a vulnerable young woman with so much to give who's destroyed by her husband and an era which promised women freedom - but only on men's terms * Stylist * An often superb novel. * Independent on Sunday * A brilliant example of what biographical fiction can be. Read it, read it, read it. * Daily Mail * Finely researched, entertaining and very plausible. * Vogue UK * 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, author of WATER FOR ELEPHANTS * If ever a couple ... became an era, it was F Scott Fitzgerald and his glamorous "flapper" wife, Zelda. They were the Jazz Age. * Independent *
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About Therese Anne Fowler

Therese Anne Fowler was born in Illinois and is a graduate of North Carolina State University, where she earned a BA in sociology and an MFA in creative writing. She taught undergraduate fiction writing and was editorial assistant for the literary magazine Obsidian III before leaving to write fiction full-time.

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Rating details

45,658 ratings
3.85 out of 5 stars
5 25% (11,434)
4 43% (19,855)
3 25% (11,217)
2 5% (2,393)
1 2% (759)
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