Tender Is the Night
F. Scott Fitzgerald, 1934
In Tender Is The Night, Fitzgerald deliberately set out to write the most ambitious and far-reaching novel of his career, experimenting radically with narrative conventions of chronology and point of view and drawing on early breakthroughs in psychiatry to enrich his account of the makeup and breakdown of character and culture.
First published in 1934, Fitzgerald's classic story of psychological disintegration was denounced by many as an unflattering portrayal of Sara and Gerald Murphy (in the guise of characters Dick and Nicole Diver), who had been generous hosts to many expatriates.
Only after Fitzgerald's death was Tender Is the Night recognized as a powerful and moving depiction of the human frailties that affect privileged and ordinary people alike. (From Scribner edition.)
In Tender is the Night, Fitzgerald distilled much of his tempestuous life with his wife Zelda, and the knowledge of the wrecked, fabulous Fitzgeralds adds poignancy and regret to this tender, supple and poetic portrait. To the just-fashionable French Riviera come Dick and Nicole Diver—handsome, rich, glamorous and enormous fun. Their dinners are legend, their atmosphere magnetic, their intelligence fine. But something is wrong. Nicole has a secret and Dick a weakness. Together they head towards the rocks on which their lives crash—and only one of them really survives. (From Penguin Essentials 2 Edition.)
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