Side of Paradise




By F. Scott Fitzgerald

BOOK ONE--The Romantic Egotist

CHAPTER 1. Amory, Son of Beatrice

Amory Blaine inherited from his mother every trait, except the
stray inexpressible few, that made him worth while. His father, an
ineffectual, inarticulate man with a taste for Byron and a habit of
drowsing over the Encyclopedia Britannica, grew wealthy at thirty
through the death of two elder brothers, successful Chicago brokers, and
in the first flush of feeling that the world was his, went to Bar Harbor
and met Beatrice O'Hara. In consequence, Stephen Blaine handed down to
posterity his height of just under six feet and his tendency to waver at
crucial moments, these two abstractions appearing in his son Amory.
For many years he hovered in the background of his family's life, an
unassertive figure with a face half-obliterated by lifeless, silky hair,
continually occupied in "taking care" of his wife, continually harassed
by the idea that he didn't and couldn't understand her.