I think I bought this book at a garage sale, but I can't really remember. It's been on my shelf for a while, and it looks like it has seen much better days!
About the Book
In the hopeful 1950s, Frank and April Wheeler appear to be a model couple: bright, beautiful, talented, with two young children and a starter home in the suburbs. Perhaps they married too young and started a family too early. Maybe Frank's job is dull. And April never saw herself as a housewife. Yet they have always lived on the assumption that greatness is only just around the corner. But now that certainty is about to crumble.
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
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I have to admit that the only reason I finally picked up this book was because I caught the last 30 minuets or so of the movie on TV and was intrigued. Then I learned that it was a book and so I decided to read the book before I watched the whole movie. I still have yet to see the whole movie, but based on what I saw the book is better than the movie and I thought what I saw was pretty good!
I'm really not 100% sure why I liked this book so much. I didn't like Frank, and I despised April. They just weren't good people. They both seemed to be a bit self-centered and not quite "grown-up". So how I enjoyed a book so much when I didn't like the main characters is a mystery to me. I thought that they both needed a big dose of reality and that the world needed to knock them down a bit. But the supporting characters were pretty good. And the overall character development was great. It would have been a lot harder to despise them if I'd not had such a good understanding of them!
The writing in this book was great. I could picture everything in my mind as I was reading. At the beginning of the book I saw Leonardo and Kate as Frank and April, but as I continued to read the image I had of them in my mind changed so much. That was really impressive to me. When I read a book after I've already seen the movie I tend to use the actor's and actresses in my mental image of the book. I don't know if it was more attributed to the fact that I've only seen part of the movie or the fact that the writing in this book was really good and over-rode my natural tendency to rely on images I already have. Either way it was refreshing to read a book without picturing the actors that were in the movie.