9780307474520

Flappers and Philosophers

by
  • ISBN13:

    9780307474520

  • ISBN10:

    0307474526

  • Edition: Reprint
  • Format: Trade Paper
  • Copyright: 2009-09-08
  • Publisher: Vintage
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Summary

Flappers and Philosophers was the first collection of short stories written by F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Author Biography

F. Scott Fitzgerald, author of The Great Gatsby, was born in 1896 and died in 1940.

Excerpts

The Offshore Pirate
 
This unlikely story begins on a sea that was a blue dream, as colorful as blue-silk stockings, and beneath a sky as blue as the irises of children's eyes. From the western half of the sky the sun was shying little golden disks at the sea—if you gazed intently enough you could see them skip from wave tip to wave tip until they joined a broad collar of golden coin that was collecting half a mile out and would eventually be a dazzling sunset. About half-way between the Florida shore and the golden collar a white steam-yacht, very young and graceful, was riding at anchor and under a blue-and-white awning aft a yellow-haired girl reclined in a wicker settee reading The Revolt of the Angels, by Anatole France.
 
She was about nineteen, slender and supple, with a spoiled alluring mouth and quick gray eyes full of a radiant curiosity. Her feet, stockingless, and adorned rather than clad in blue-satin slippers which swung nonchalantly from her toes, were perched on the arm of a settee adjoining the one she occupied. And as she read she intermittently regaled herself by a faint application to her tongue of a half-lemon that she held in her hand. The other half, sucked dry, lay on the deck at her feet and rocked very gently to and fro at the almost imperceptible motion of the tide.
 
The second half-lemon was well-nigh pulpless and the golden collar had grown astonishing in width, when suddenly the drowsy silence which enveloped the yacht was broken by the sound of heavy footsteps and an elderly man topped with orderly gray hair and clad in a white-flannel suit appeared at the head of the companionway. There he paused for a moment until his eyes became accustomed to the sun, and then seeing the girl under the awning he uttered a long even grunt of disapproval.
 
If he had intended thereby to obtain a rise of any sort he was doomed to disappointment. The girl calmly turned over two pages, turned back one, raised the lemon mechanically to tasting distance, and then very faintly but quite unmistakably yawned.
 
"Ardita!" said the gray-haired man sternly.
 
Ardita uttered a small sound indicating nothing.
 
"Ardita!" he repeated. "Ardita!"
 
Ardita raised the lemon languidly, allowing three words to slip out before it reached her tongue.
 
"Oh, shut up."
 
"Ardita!"
 
"What?"
 
"Will you listen to me—or will I have to get a servant to hold you while I talk to you?"
 
The lemon descended slowly and scornfully.
 
"Put it in writing."
 
"Will you have the decency to close that abominable book and discard that damn lemon for two minutes?"
 
"Oh, can't you lemme alone for a second?"
 
"Ardita, I have just received a telephone message from the shore—"
 
"Telephone?" She showed for the first time a faint interest.
 
"Yes, it was—"
 
"Do you mean to say," she interrupted wonderingly, "'at they let you run a wire out here?"
 
"Yes, and just now—"
 
"Won't other boats bump into it?"
 
"No. It's run along the bottom. Five min—"
 
"Well, I'll be darned! Gosh! Science is golden or something—isn't it?"
 
"Will you let me say what I started to?"
 
"Shoot!"
 
"Well, it seems—well, I am up here—" He paused and swallowed several times distractedly. "Oh, yes. Young woman, Colonel Moreland has called up again to ask me to be sure to bring you in to dinner. His son Toby has come all the way from New York to meet you and he's invited several other young people. For the last time, will you—"
 
"No," said Ardita shortly, "I won't. I came along on this darn cruise with the one idea of going to Palm Beach, and you knew it, and I absolutely refuse to meet any darn old colonel or any da

Excerpted from Flappers and Philosophers by F. Scott Fitzgerald
All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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