Kirk's Reviews > Tender Is the Night

Tender Is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald
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Dec 21, 07

bookshelves: sentimental-faves
Read in July, 1992

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 reread this for work probably once a year, and I'm always amazed at how fresh it seems to me---mainly because I'm always discovering a line or phrase that I'd passed over.

Other reasons to like TITN: It's Fitzgerald's most experimental, with just about every modernist trick in the book. It has two fantastic heroines that come to life when they emerge from Dick Diver's point of view: Nicole and Rosemary. There are glamorous excursions from Nice to Paris and Rome. It has that overwhelming sense of abstraction---it feels like you're reading history, a socialist critique of excess capitalism (check out the chapter on Nicole's shopping spree), a look into the prurience and spectatorship of early filmmaking, a dressing down of romanticism, and a love story about the impossibility of love.

Oh, and its so achingly, gloriously sad---I think that's the main reason I consider it a classic.
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by Ally (new)

Ally The brand new group - Bright Young Things - is nominating books to read in January & Tender is the Night is among them. Its the perfect place to discuss your favourite books and authors from the early 20th Century, why not take a look...

http://www.goodreads.com/group/invite...


Bessie James Great review. I try and re-read it every two years or so. The shopping spree is a classic.


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