Tender Is the Night
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Tender Is the Night

3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  56,391 ratings  ·  2,383 reviews
'Tender is the Night' is based upon the author's unhappy marriage, and was written as he was experiencing the tragedies of his wife's nervous breakdown and his own decline.
Paperback, 392 pages
Published 1997 by Penguin Popular Classics (first published 1933)
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Jay From Wikipedia: "Two versions of this novel are in print. The first version, published in 1934, uses flashbacks; the second, revised version, prepared…moreFrom Wikipedia: "Two versions of this novel are in print. The first version, published in 1934, uses flashbacks; the second, revised version, prepared by Fitzgerald's friend and noted critic Malcolm Cowley on the basis of notes for a revision left by Fitzgerald, is ordered chronologically and was first published posthumously in 1948. Critics have suggested that Cowley's revision was undertaken due to negative reviews of the temporal structure of the first version of the book."(less)
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sckenda
What happens when an ambitious psychiatrist marries his rich mental patient? Nicole struggles with mental illness (view spoiler), and Dick Diver dedicates his skill to curing his wife but risks self-destruction. (view spoiler) Physician, heal thyself.

Fitzgerald gradually reveals the reality of this couple in the...more
Ann
When Fitzgerald finished this gem, he was stunned by the poor reviews it received. I honestly think it's a profoundly more true and powerful book than Gatsby ever will be. His effortless and viceral writing tells a story of such complex and accurate human relationships, I often find myself reflecting on Dick Diver as a friend I should check up on, and part of me thinks I spent a year of my youth hanging out on the French Riveria having too much to drink, but somehow pulling it off sophistication...more
Martine
How is one to feel about a protagonist who frequently displays signs of elitism, sexism, bigotry and homophobia, finds himself worryingly attracted to young girls, has no goal in life except to make himself useful to damsels in distress, and drinks away his career and marriage, ending up a mere shadow of his former self? Is one supposed to regard him as a tragic hero? Is one to sympathise with him? And if one does sympathise with him, is that because of the way he was written, or rather because...more
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
This book is so pointless, you could read the chapters in random order and probably not feel like you'd missed much. This marks my second and final attempt to read it. I almost made it to the halfway point this time. If you loved The Great Gatsby, don't get your hopes up for this one to be anything close to that good. You'll be disappointed.
Jonathan
Feb 09, 2009 Jonathan rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who don't do anything without first consulting Mother.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Shovelmonkey1
Jul 05, 2012 Shovelmonkey1 rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who want to see beyond Gatsby
Recommended to Shovelmonkey1 by: 1001 books list
For the longest time I lived an F. Scott Fitzgerald free existence. The name was familiar enough although I mostly associated it with those bulky Penguin Classics which are prone to making me break out in a cold-sweat. Weighty tomes burdened by commentary on class difference, forbidden or tormented or doomed romance, some of which are drier than a mouthful of Jacob's Crackers.

I am F. Scott Fitzgerald-free no longer! And how glad does this make me? Very. I read The Great Gatsby a couple of month...more
Kirk
This is a hard but necessary book to read. It should be the type of plot we're attracted to, because it's a dissolution story, not unlike LOST WEEKEND or LEAVING LAS VEGAS, to name but two examples of the genre. And yet many friends I share this with just can't get into it. Part of the blame lies with the style: it's just so damned intricate and thick, it tends to scare away those who don't want to be ravished by style. As someone who does, I can get lost in this book any day of the week. I rere...more
ariel
i knew a dick once. his name was sam, and he was a star. people gravitated toward him everywhere he went. i did, too. he radiated light and fun and when he talked to you, he made you feel like the most important person in the room. he partied hard, and he was the type of person you wanted to party with, because it was always a good time. he was the son of a diplomat, knew five languages, and always knew exactly what to say or do to get the situation how he wanted it. when i was about sixteen, we...more
Empress
Mar 04, 2008 Empress rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: poor little rich girls.
Shelves: suck-a-tating
I am trying to like this book because for some reason I think that I should.
But, in truth, I am finding it quite dull and painfully slow.
Maybe I lack in patience or sophistication, because--given other reviews of this book--there is a good chance I am missing something (or simply haven't read enough into it yet--apparently it gets good after the tedious first 100 pages...)
But so far, I am pretty seriously bored and disintersted in his saga about rich people, poor misunderstood movie stars and...more
Kelly
This is my favorite Fitzgerald book. I read it back to back with This Side of Paradise last year, which was an interesting experiment. I had the young, beautiful, self-confident Fitzgerald and the Fitzgerald of post-Zelda's craziness, dark dark alcoholic Fitzgerald. Besides showing obviously how much his skills had improved, it showed the sheer range he was capable of as well. This is a dark, depressing novel. Loss, loneliness, isolation, desolation. It does not end well. But the sheer power of...more
Zanna
2.5 stars

Of course, it doesn't matter what the author really meant to say. Reading Richard Godden's introduction though, it was quite comforting to me to remember that it doesn't matter what scholars think the text means, or author meant, either. Or the press. "A tragedy backlit by beauty" is the highlighted quote.

What tragedy? There is a 'tragedy' here, if that word, so empty of agency, so forgiving and concealing, can be used for a rape. But I don't think that's what's meant; they mean poor Di...more
Chiara Pagliochini
“Dick cercò di rilassarsi: la lotta sarebbe presto incominciata a casa e avrebbe forse dovuto vegliare a lungo ricomponendo l’universo per lei.”

È stato molte volte detto - e scritto certo in tutte le lingue - che l’amore dovrebbe essere una fusione tra due persone, una fusione fisica e mentale e spirituale che faccia di due esseri un essere solo.
“Tender is the night” viene a raccontarci quel che accade quando questo obiettivo è raggiunto, e le conclusioni che se ne traggono non sono felici nean...more
Rob
I can't believe I read this and it wasn't even for school. Although I remember I was temping at JPM Chase in Montvale NJ when I was reading this and some guy was like, "Yo, why you reading romance novels?" And I was like, "It's F. Scott Fitzgerald you mook." Of course I didn't say that, but I should have. God I hated that place. I decided that I never wanted to work in a corporate park ever. Of course, now I work nowhere, so I got my wish. The book still sucks. I mean, the main character's name...more
Anh
Such a beautiful title.

The only other book from Fitzgerald I read is, of course, The Great Gatsby, which didn't impress me. So only naturally, I'm reluctant to read any other book by The Lost Generation, or at least, any by Fitzgerald. I know it's ridiculously assuming of me, but first impression makes all the differences and I'm oh so prejudiced.

Ah, but the title is so, so beautiful. So I thought, why not giving it a go? It's only a fairly thin book anyway. At least it won't take long.

Another m...more
Kim

In 1932, F Scott Fitgerald was living in suburban Baltimore. His father had recently died and his wife Zelda had been committed to a psychiatric institution in Switzerland. He finally decided that the novel on which he had been working on and off since the publication of The Great Gatsby in 1925 would be about the destruction of a man of great promise through an ill-judged marriage. In writing the novel, Fitzgerald liberally used material from his life. This material included his relationship wi...more
Marco Tamborrino
Ci si sentiva soli e tristi, ad avere il cuore così vuoto l'uno per l'altra.

Una struggente storia d'amore? L'antenato dei romanzetti rosa odierni? Non direi. Piuttosto la discesa in un abisso. Raccontarlo non è facile, recensirlo tantomeno. Del resto in questo romanzo non succede pressoché niente. Niente d'importante, almeno. È, come ho già detto, un viaggio nella follia, ma non solo follia amorosa, anche follia mentale, fisica, morale, sociale. "Tenera è la notte" è un bellissimo titolo, un tit...more
Cecily
Rosemary (young movie star) and husband and wife, Dick and Nicole Diver, all expats in France… Dick is originally a psychiatrist and Nicole was his patient - a psychologically unhealthy relationship for both.

My version is the original, with time jumps (many editions were chronological). The middle period of the story (the start of the original structure), when Dick first meets Rosemary is somewhat slow. Once you understand more about Dick and Nicole, it gets better.

A bit like Thomas Hardy, som...more
Kecia
Ah the roaring 20s! The Great War (WWI) is over. The stock market is going gang busters; its crash is yet to come. The Great Depression is looming in the not too distant future, but of course no one knows that. What's a rich, shallow, American to do but hang out in Europe and behave badly???

Earlier this week I heard on the news that narcissism is on the rise. I looked down at Mr. Fitzgerald in my hand and thought surely the person on television telling me this is not a student of history. Tender...more
Larissa
When I sit down to consider Hot American Expat Writers from the 20s (which I do often), I most often divide the field into two camps: The Romantic, Tragic Disinfranchised and The Stoic Motherfuckers. Obviously (obviously), the clear choices for mascots of either camp are Misters Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald, and Ernest Hemingway, respectively. Reflecting upon this dichotomy, one might, if one is was so inclined--which (see above) I am--undergo one of the ultimate literary litmus tests:

Which one...more
Madeline
To be fair, this really wasn't Fitzgerald's fault.

I love The Great Gatsby and I love The Beautiful and the Damned. And, as my dedication to The List proves, I love reading about rich white people and their Rich White People Problems. But everything about this book rubbed me the wrong way, for the following reasons (none of which, as I said, are Fitzgerald's fault. Well, maybe the last one.):

I first started this as an audiobook, which is a medium that I'm trying to get into thanks to my 40-minut...more
Sarah
Update!: If you'd like to see the girl Rosemary was based on, skip to the 4:45 in this video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xK93I...
(She's the one in the apron).

Original review:
The psychology is outdated -- but the writing! The writing! So lovely. So moving. I'm in love with this book.
Rachel
First off, I would like to say that the description Goodreads has included for this novel is lacking any sort of sufficient plot and/or character summary; if I wanted to read a biography of Fitzgerald, I would.

Okay. I went through a phase last year of REALLY wanting to like F. Scott Fitzgerald. I read three or four of his works in a row, "Tender is the Night" being one of them. I can't deny his style is elegant and commanding, but I have yet to read a Fitzgerald novel that I really love. The rea...more
Erelin
Ok, well, this is a hard thing to do, to give F. Scott Fitzgerald two stars. Who am I to criticize one of the (supposedly) greatest authors and literary geniuses ever? But the truth is that although I do aprecciate his excellent writing technique and many wonderful passages in this book (hence the extra star), I failed to connect with this book in any way whatsoever. I didn't care for any of the characters and their joys and sorrows left me completely unmoved. I just could not care less what hap...more
Sparrow
The most depressing book I've ever read.
Stephanie
Tender is the Night, one of F Scott Fitzgerald’s later works, was begun in 1925, but was not published until some years later. Indeed, the lapse between composition and publication had significant impact upon the book’s success: although the author considered it to be his masterpiece, it was met with little of the runaway success and critical accolades of a work such as The Great Gatsby, which arguably remains today Fitzgerald’s seminal work. This in part was due to the temporal disconnect betwe...more
Trevor
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cphe
A difficult novel to read. The story of Nicole and Dick Diver both living with the effects of Mental Illness. It's a sad and poignant story.

Dick is an emminent psychiatrist who marries his patient, the very wealthy Nicole Warren. It's a scenario that can't end well. As Nicole grows in strength and is ultimately able to stand on her own merits, Dick begins to unravel. It's a poignant read, a tiring read.

At times I loved the characters at other times I disliked them intensely. I don't think this n...more
Bruce
The young psychiatrist Dick Diver finds himself falling in love with Nicole Warren, a young psychotic patient, the victim of an incestuous relationship with her father, in a posh in-patient clinic in Switzerland. She in her turn is infatuated with Diver. The situation is professionally unethical and therapeutically dangerous, but Diver seems passive and unable to resist. Fitzgerald’s prose is exquisite and his portrayal of interpersonal yearning is sensitive and agonizing. The characters seem ve...more
Lada
A story of a couple like a prince a princess, set in the beautiful French Riviera. Like a Hollywood movie. With a beautiful girl arriving in and having a crush on the prince, and the man childhood beau of the princess.A moving story of the impossibilty of love, because of deep-ingrained and stifled emotions that have become part of a secret. A dolorous marriage secret watered down in alcohol and despair. a shattered dream. Reality's dream. Love as a disillusion. Tendre is the Night becomes a dre...more
·Karen·
There is something deeply ambivalent about Fitzgerald's appraisal of the dissipation, drunkenness and fatuous frivolity of a world to which he himself belonged. Surely we can only condemn the characters for their snobbery, their thoughtlessness, their attitude that money should get them out of the kind of difficulty that they have brought upon themselves through ignorance, self-deception or sheer bloody-mindedness? And yet at the same time we can feel sympathy for fragile Nicole, for Dick's desc...more
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Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was an American writer of novels and short stories, whose works have been seen as evocative of the Jazz Age, a term he himself allegedly coined. He is regarded as one of the greatest twentieth century writers. Fitzgerald was of the self-styled "Lost Generation," Americans born in the 1890s who came of age during World War I. He finished four novels, left a fifth unfini...more
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“Actually that’s my secret — I can’t even talk about you to anybody because I don’t want any more people to know how wonderful you are.” 537 likes
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