95 years after it was first published, the copyright on The Great Gatsby has expired. This great American novel has sold over 25 million copies since it was first published, despite initially disappointing sales. It is hard to believe now, with its cultural pervasiveness, that F Scott Fitzgerald died thinking he was a failure, that his works were all but forgotten.

The Great Gatsby is an undisputed classic and its entry into the public domain immediately saw a raft of interpretations and retellings. The one at the top of Breaking the Glass Slipper’s to-read list was immediately The Chosen and the Beautiful by Nghi Vo. A queer, Asian retelling from the point of view of Vietnamese adoptee Jordan Baker.

Vo’s novel doesn’t disappoint. But it occurred to us that tackling such a beloved classic must be a daunting and perilous task. So we asked the author how she went about it!

Mentioned in this episode:

  • The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald

Nghi Vo is the author of the acclaimed novellas When the Tiger Came Down the Mountain and The Empress of Salt and Fortune, a Hugo, Locus, and Ignyte Award finalist and the winner of Reddit’s Stabby and IAFA’s Crawford Award.

Born in Illinois, she now lives on the shores of Lake Michigan. She believes in the ritual of lipstick, the power of stories, and the right to change your mind. The Chosen and the Beautiful is her debut novel.