Sunday, March 11, 2007

Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Scribner; Reprint edition (July 1, 1995)
  • ISBN-10: 068480154X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684801544
  • List price: $10.00
  • I finished this book on Mar. 11
  • This book is number 28 on the list.
So, let me admit something here: I have read all the books on the list that remotely appealed to me, and am now plodding through with the rest. I chose this Fitzgerald because I had liked The Great Gatsby. Unfortunately, I did not find this book to be nearly as interesting.
This might make me seem stupid, and that's fine with me: but I did not get this. I mean, I understood what was going on. But I did not understand why I was supposed to care, I was all: "Why am I reading about this?" I still don't know.
Dick and Nicole Diver are this 1920's expatriate power couple. Rosemary, an 18 year old actress finds them charming and immediately falls in love with Dick within the first few pages. When this happened, I was already mad. I wished she was going to fall for the other guy, Abe North, don't ask why but I found him way more interesting. A about a hundred or so pages later still no affair, though they both love each other. End book one, and I'm all: "What?" Anyway, we find out that Dick married Nicole after treating her for being a total nutbar and they don't ever really seem to like each other except for one overheard moment of two sentence sexiness. Later, Nicole goes astronaut diapers crazy again for a few pages. She eventually gets better while Dick gets less successful, less attractive and more of a lush. Boo to that.
I do not appreciate a book in which my romantic lead A. never has good sex B. never gets anything he wants and C. in fact becomes a total loser. I also do not appreciate the shift of perspective to a character whom I never liked (ie: Nicole). Though, I must say, I did like her tryst with Tommy at the end, because I love when a woman breaks from convention and does her own thing, a la A Doll's House though in this one Nicole keeps her kids. I get that there are messages here, or I am supposed to feel something for Dick's descent into mediocrity, but I'm not feeling it.
So, yeah, not a fan. I'm sure there are many people who would like this one, but I am not that girl. For anyone reading, I recommend using the SparkNotes page on the book as a guide, because there sure is some stuff that happens that I didn't get the first time. I am sorta starting to dread the idea of reading more books like this. Alright, I have to go find a good ghost story or something to get this taste out of my mouth...

1 comment:

Shon Richards said...

"Later, Nicole goes astronaut diapers crazy again for a few pages."

I know the term is topical, but astronaut diapers crazy is the best description anyone ever gave of Nicole.