Carraway having graduated from Yale and fought in World War I, has
returned home to begin a career. He is restless and has decided
to move to New York to learn the bond business. The novel opens
early in the summer of 1922 in West Egg, Long Island, where Nick
has rented a house. Next to his place is the Gatsby's mansion.
Tom and Daisy Buchanan live in East Egg. Daisy is Nick's cousin
and Tom had been in the same senior society at Yale. They invite
Nick to dinner at their mansion, and he meets a young woman golfer
named Jordan Baker, whom Daisy wants Nick to be interested in. During
dinner the phone rings, and when Tom and Daisy leave the room, Jordan
informs Nick that the caller is Tom's woman from New York.
Myrtle Wilson, Tom's woman, lives is a section of Long Island known
as the Valley of Ashes. In the Valley of Ashes is George Wilson's
garage. Painted on a large billboard nearby is a fading advertisement
for an optician with the eyes of a Doctor looking over them with
a pair of glasses.
One day Tom takes Nick to meet the Wilsons. The party breaks up
when Myrtle starts using Daisy's name, and Tom breaks her nose with
a blow of his open hand. Several weeks later Nick is invited to
one of Gatsby's elaborate parties. Nick watches Gatsby and notices
that he does not drink or join in the revelry of the party.
At a luncheon with Nick in New York, Gatsby tells Nick that he graduated
from Oxford. During lunch Gatsby introduces Nick to his business
associate, Meyer Wolfsheim, who fixed the World Series in 1919.
At tea that afternoon Nick finds out the Gatsby wants Nick to arrange
a date between him and Daisy. Gatsby had loved Daisy five years
ago, but he had been sent oversees by the army. Daisy had given
up waiting for him and had married Tom. Gatsby decides to win Daisy
back and his first step is to buy a house in West Egg. His house
is across the bay from Daisy's house, and he can see a green light
at the end of Daisy's dock. It represents his hope.
Gatsby and Daisy meet for the first time in five years, and he tries
to impress her with his mansion and his wealth. Tom, Daisy, Gatsby,
Nick and Jordan go into the city where the truth is revealed about
Gatsby and Daisy. Daisy will not go away with Gatsby and the five-year
dream is over. Gatsby and Daisy go home together in a yellow Rolls
Royce. On the way home they get into a car accident in which Myrtle
was killed. Gatsby will take the blame for Daisy who was driving.
George Wilson shoots Gatsby and then kills himself.
Not many people came to Gatsby's funeral except Nick, Mr. Gatz,
and a few servants. Nick returns to his hometown.