What Do Owl Eyes Reveal About Gatsby’S Books?

Updated 30 September, 2023
Owl Eyes is first introduced in Jay Gatsby’s library. He was fascinated over the fact that Gatsby had real books in his library, instead of decoys. The fact that he was interested in the books shows that he has an interest in matters that most people would overlook or disregard.
Detailed answer:

While at the party Nick meets a man whom we call ‘owl eyes’ since he never said what his name was. Owl Eyes is introduced in Gatsby’s library and is seen sitting “staring at the shelves of books”. Owl eyes tells Nick that he “needn’t bother” to look at the books to see if they were real because he already checked, and they were. Nick was confused, but Owl eyes continued in saying he “thought the books would be nice durable cardboard” and that they were in fact “absolutely real”. Owl eyes continues, “It’s a bona fide piece of printed matter. It fooled me. This fella’s a regular Belasco. It’s a triumph. What thoroughness! What realism! Knew when to stop, too-didn’t cut the pages. But what do you want? What do you expect?”. Basically, Owl eyes knows that Gatsby is a fake, and his idea of people in East egg is completely wrong. He points out the books because Gatsby is fake, and he assumed the books would be as well. He was shocked to find out that the books were perfectly real. So, he compares Gatsby to Belasco, a director known for his very realistic sets. This suggests that Gatsby disfavors the class he was born into because of his excessive attempts to leave his current class of new money. The Owl Eyes represents the ability of the people to see what happens to them in their lives.
Previously, it was revealed that Owl Eyes was able to perceive instances better than most people in the book, without a distorted view. In the end of the novel Owl Eyes takes off his spectacles and then sympathizes with Gatsby at the funeral. He wiping his glasses could again have been another symbolic meaning for how he perceives a situation, such as to see why Gatsby was rejected by others in a manner that was clear-sighted.
To sum up, Owl Eyes was strategically placed in the library by Fitzgerald because he wanted to give the reader some hints to the philosophy of the drunken man. The man was very excited that the books were not cardboard and no pages were ripped out. Meaning, everybody has their own life story: some people cut out pages to hide the truth, and some do not understand the synopsis, yet every story is real.

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