Revolutionary Road

Revolutionary Road

3.8 214
by Richard Yates
     
 

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ISBN-10: 0307454789

ISBN-13: 2900307454781

Pub. Date: 12/30/2008

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

With a new introduction by Richard Ford

"A deft, ironic, beautiful novel that deserves to be a classic." —William Styron

From the moment of its publication in 1961, Revolutionary Road was hailed as a masterpiece of realistic fiction and as the most evocative portrayal of the opulent desolation of the American suburbs. It's the story of Frank

Overview

With a new introduction by Richard Ford

"A deft, ironic, beautiful novel that deserves to be a classic." —William Styron

From the moment of its publication in 1961, Revolutionary Road was hailed as a masterpiece of realistic fiction and as the most evocative portrayal of the opulent desolation of the American suburbs. It's the story of Frank and April Wheeler, a bright, beautiful, and talented couple who have lived on the assumption that greatness is only just around the corner. With heartbreaking compassion and remorseless clarity, Richard Yates shows how Frank and April mortgage their spiritual birthright, betraying not only each other, but their best selves.

In his introduction to this edition, novelist Richard Ford pays homage to the lasting influence and enduring power of Revolutionary Road.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
2900307454781
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
12/30/2008
Series:
Vintage Contemporaries Series
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
480

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Revolutionary Road 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 211 reviews.
Ivy26 More than 1 year ago
This book caught my eye this past summer when I was browsing through B&N. At 15, a book about broken marriage is not exactly my usual cup of tea, yet there was something about the story that intrigued me. Well, that, and the fact that Leo DiCaprio was in the film version. (: I definitely did not go into reading this novel with high hopes. Hell, I wasn't even expecting to get through the whole thing. But man, was I wrong! Since buying it in August, I've read it three times - and I never re-read books! Ever. That, my friends, is how totally awesome it is. What was so completely fantastic about Revolutionary Road was the characters. Everything about them was so real - so scarily real, even, that I kind of felt like I was reading a book about myself...(Note to eye-rolling adults: Yeah, I may only be 15, but I could still relate to April and Frank in a surprising number of ways. So ha.) Anywho. The two main characters, Frank and April, aren't exactly likable folks. In fact, they're both pretty messed up and kind of annoying at times. And yet you couldn't help but feel bad for them, sympathize with them, and even root for their happiness as the novel went on. I know alot of people hated April, but I actually preferred her to Frank. In addition to the amazing characters, the writing is absolutely exquisite. Yates did a fantastic job with writing a natural dialogue and describing emotions and surroundings without whipping out some annoyingly impressive vocabulary. By the end of the novel, not only was I crying my eyes out, (Yeah, so there's a piece of advice for ya: Have tissues on hand.) but I was also wishing I could write something that touching and, well, freaking amazing. After reading it, I sprinted my butt off down to the Blockbuster to rent the film. Sadly, it was not nearly as good as the book - as is often times the case. The performances were great, but there was just something missing that I couldn't quite put my finger on. However, if you're lazy and aren't a fan of reading, I suggest you watch the movie. It's pretty much spot on plotwise, though not as nearly emotionally devastating. Or, at least, that's my opinion. So yeah, I'm going to stop blabbering now, as most people have probably already skipped to the next review anyways...All and all, Revolutionary Road is now one of my favorite books and has earned its own permanent spot on my bookshelf. I highly reccommend it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a very moving story that reflects the attitudes of the 'fifties' realistically but one that transends time and can be meaningful to anyone in today's world. The plot is powerful in that it deals with the economical, social and emotional impacts of the era from the point of view of both women and men. Its a wonderful read and hopefully will be a great movie with Winslett and DeCaprio playing April and Frank.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Many critics believe Richard Yates to be one of the most overlooked--but best--author of the 20th century, and it's easy to see why in this well-written and perceptive study of a couple of intellectually snobbish New Yorkers who, for reasons not entirely of their own choosing, are forced to move into 'tickey tackey' conformist suburbia. The husband commutes and the wife stays home and keeps house; this was 1955, years before anyone thought of feminism as anything other than the suffragist movement. Most of the story takes place through husband Frank's perspective, and at age 30 he is proof that a man can have a midlife crisis at any age. He unwillingly takes a job with a large, IBM-like company to support the family and discovers, much to his horror and fascination, that he actually likes this work. But things are not going well at home. His wife April resents the time he spends in Manhattan, and not without reason. Yates doesn't often leave Frank's point-of-view but when he does, as when relating a fight between Richard and April, he cross-cuts so dextrously as to lend a whole new insight to the term 'battle of the sexes.' I reallly liked this book. I would hazard a guess that it appeared to be more existentially bleak when it was published in the early Sixties than it does today, when it can be put under a microscope and examined sociologically, warts and all. But it's a good read no matter what stance you take and you will, I bet, sympathize with at least one of the characters in it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Written in 1961, Mr. Yate's book is a piercingly clear, honest look at the lives of a couple in suburban Connecticut who are so caught up in their selfishness and self-aggrandizing lifestyle, that they fail to see their life crumbling around them. The writing is so honest at times that one wonders why all authors can't write this way. Highly recommended.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Not only is this book well-written and eye-catching, it explores in depth the relationship between a husband and wife, their roles in society, and the devastating effect of unfulfilled wishes. It is one of the most overlooked books of the 20th century.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved the book but not a happy feel good novel if that is what you are looking for
Liz Gerding More than 1 year ago
This is not a feel good book, so keep moving if that's what you are looking for. It is a very dark, unforgiving reflection on life and marriage that speaks very honestly to the way we live. Yates makes no heros out of anyone, all the characters are flawed and so real. And the movie is the best film adaptation I've seen; Dicapprio and Winslet could not have delivered a better performance.
ChristineC3 More than 1 year ago
Richard Yates originally published this book in 1961. It was his first book and was a book award winner, for good reason. Revolutionary Road is poignant and relatable. The characters are well developed and human. It touches the heart and left me examining those times in my life when the mundane sets in and the draw of escape and adventure tugs so hard it can rip your life into unexpected dimensions...not all of which are as you imagined, as in this book. This book clearly showcases the thoughts and emotions that drive our critical moments of decision as we consider a change in direction. A great read for those interested in human nature and for those who are contemplating change. It may provide you with the impetus to jump or with renewed appreciation to remain where you are.
LauraReviews More than 1 year ago
I read this book a year before the movie came out and absolutely loved it. Classic in its descriptions, timeless in its content, Revolutionary Road is a suburban legend. While observing the lives of Frank and April Wheeler, Yates captures the essence of realism and hopefulness characteristic of the post World War II American flight to suburbia. Probably many of the themes and character dynamics could be applied to today as well.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book because the movie was coming out. I finished it in one sitting. It was so gripping, and the characters are so real you begin to think that you're one of them. I was worried that the movie wasn't going to be as good because how could anyone put this piece of art into film and retain all of its wonder? The movie was dead on the book, as if I was reading it all over again. Highly recommended!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. The characters are well developed, and the plot is interesting and makes you step back and look at your life. For those that say that it is about shallow people, I have to disagree. The characters in this book are dynamic, and have understandable values. Yes, Frank needs to get a hold on his temper, and April needs to learn to talk about her feelings and not make such rash decisions, but that certainly doesn't make them shallow. This book was definetely riveting and definetely moving. Yes, it is depressing, so if you're looking for a bright, sunny, happy book, then you probably shouldn't read this. And, contrary to what some people are saying, this book is not boring. It is definetely worth your time to read it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not usually my genre and not exactly a page turner, but still very well written. If you're a girl who either married or considers ever getting married, don't read this. Otherwise, sure.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've always had a great interest in the culture of 1950's & 1960's society, so naturally I was drawn to this novel's setting. It was until my roommate told me that I had to read the novel before we could rent the film featuring Leo DiCaprio & Kate Winslet. I was a little hesitant to read the novel, thinking it was going to be a melodrama about all the unrest among the beginnings of American suburbia. However, this book was absolutely remarkable. Though the protagonists, Frank & April, were riddled with discontent within the simple-minded people and society of suburbia and 1950's NYC workplace - contrary to society's "Cult of Domesticity." Yates, the author, lays underneath the story on the surface a deeper meaning that many people were yearning for at this time. Many taboo issues, such as abortion and adultery, are addressed in this novel. Overall, I am very happy that I had read this novel - well worth the $7.99 :)
Shannon520 More than 1 year ago
While Revolutionary Road wasn't a book that changed my life or altered my perception on it, it was a good read and a good alternative to the common view that the 50s were ultra-idyllic, happy nuclear family times.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was pretty anti-climatic. I felt like I knew what was going to happen a couple of chapters in. I thought it was a very mono-tone book. I did not care for the writing style. I recommend skipping the book and going directly to the theatre to see the movie.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book, could not put it down. Very sad though. Good movie as well
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cgeiger1 More than 1 year ago
A MUST READ!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago