Review: Richard Yates’ “Revolutionary Road”

by writereaderly

A tightly written catalogue of disappointment and soul-hollowing accommodations to modern (1950s) life. Frank and April Wheeler consider themselves the beautiful, intellectual, up-and-comers of their Connecticut suburb, but 1955 saw the disintegration of their sprawling complacency and empty marriage. “Fine” writing, as they burble in the intro, and a perceptive dissection of pre-60s zeitgeist and its representative characters, but I had thought it would pack more of a contemporary punch. Good enough, though.

Where it came from: KAM’s Bookshelf
Time and manner of reading: Parenthetic wedding reads and a train finale, somewhat bleakly and moderately absorbed
Where it went: Home
Reminds me of: The terrible honesty required to live well, and the importance of safe, legal abortions
Who I’d recommend it to: It’s well-written enough, but it’s so relentlessly, commonplace-ly dark I’m not sure who would actively *want* to read it – perhaps masochists who’d hope to feel superior because their lives are, of course, better and richer than the Wheelers’.
Also reading: Rabbit #5