Larissa's Reviews > Tender is the Night

Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald
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's review
Apr 04, 2007

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bookshelves: 2007, english-usa

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 is your favorite?

Understand that this is not truly about whether you still consider The Great Gatsby to be one of the Best Books Ever Written, or whether you're an aficionado for whom any description of the life-and-death opera that is Bullfighting is a (nearly) spiritual experience. No, when you come down to it, this is really a question of whose book made you want to abandon your humdrum contemporary American life and take up residence in a sexy foreign locale where having a job, knowing the language, and/or sleeping with people you know are so besides the point. What it comes down to is this:

Whose (to crib a phrase from one of my very favorite writer/critic/phrase-coiner-s) "lifestyle porn" makes you hotter?

I have my answer, of course, but I wouldn't want to unnecessarily sway your own soul-search, so I'll just leave you with this thought, courtesy of the aforementioned M. Ascher Chamney:

"Fitzgerald was all agonized and wrote long books about his feelings. Hemingway was all, 'Fuck it--I'm gonna go shoot a lion.'"

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Reading Progress

Started Reading
August 1, 2006 – Finished Reading
April 4, 2007 – Shelved
October 22, 2008 – Shelved as: 2007
June 10, 2009 – Shelved as: english-usa

Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Katey (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:54AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Katey This is one of the best author/book reviews I've read yet! Well done! "Lifestyle porn"- dead on. I love it.

message 2: 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...

message 3: by Mark (new) - rated it 1 star

Mark yeah, but Hemingway could also write about women, love and emotions in a surprisingly gentle way. For all his barrel-chested, "I'm-a-man-dammit!" gumbo he had his moments of vulnerability.

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