Hot Best Seller

Tender is the Night: "Show me a hero and I will write you a tragedy."

Availability: Ready to download

Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was born on September 24th 1896 in Saint Paul, Minnesota, to an upper-middle-class family. His early years in Buffalo, New York showed him to be a boy of high intelligence and drive with a thirst for literature. In 1908, his father was fired from Procter & Gamble, and the family returned to Minnesota. Here Fitzgerald attended St. Paul Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was born on September 24th 1896 in Saint Paul, Minnesota, to an upper-middle-class family. His early years in Buffalo, New York showed him to be a boy of high intelligence and drive with a thirst for literature. In 1908, his father was fired from Procter & Gamble, and the family returned to Minnesota. Here Fitzgerald attended St. Paul Academy, in St. Paul, until 1911. At 13 he was published in the school newspaper, it was, of all things, a detective story. In 1911, aged 15, he was sent to the prestigious Newman School, in Hackensack, New Jersey.And, after graduating in 1913, he decided to continue at Princeton University. Here he firmly dedicated himself to writing. Unfortunately his writing pursuits came at the expense of his coursework. In 1917 he dropped out to join the U.S. Army. However this service to his country came with the very real fear that he might perish in the trenches of Western Europe with his literary dreams not yet begun. So he spent the weeks before reporting for duty at work on a novel entitled The Romantic Egotist. Fitzgerald was assigned to Camp Sheridan, in Alabama. It was there that Fitzgerald met the love of his life; Zelda Sayre, the "golden girl," of Montgomery youth society.The war ended before Fitzgerald could be deployed, and he moved to New York City hoping to start a career in advertising that would be lucrative enough to convince Zelda to marry him. Unable to convince her that his means were enough to support her she broke off the engagement.Fitzgerald returned to his parents in St. Paul, to revise The Romantic Egoist, now recast as This Side of Paradise. His revised novel was accepted by Scribner's and published in 1920 becoming an instant success. It launched Fitzgerald's career as a writer and provided a steady income suitable for Zelda's ambitions. The engagement resumed and they married at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York.Frances Scott "Scottie" Fitzgerald, their only child, was born on October 26, 1921. Inspired by the parties he had attended visiting Long Island's north shore Fitzgerald began planning the greatest of his novels, The Great Gatsby, in 1923, wanting to produce "something new—something extraordinary and beautiful and simple and intricately patterned." Published in April 1925, The Great Gatsby received mixed reviews and but sold 20,000 in its first year. Today, it is one of a small circle vying for the title "Great American Novel". Fitzgerald continued to supplement his income by writing short stories for magazines and to sell his stories and novels to Hollywood. He called this ‘whoring’. In February 1932, Zelda was hospitalized with schizophrenia. Fitzgerald's heavy and excessive drinking had now developed into alcoholism and with recurring financial difficulties, the emotional toll of Zelda's mental illness, this meant several difficult years. In 1937, Fitzgerald moved to Hollywood. His income improved but he found movies beneath his talents.He spent the second half of the 1930s in Hollywood, working on short stories, scripts for MGM, and his final novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon. In 1939, MGM ended the contract, and Fitzgerald became a writer for hire. Still an alcoholic, he now became estranged from Zelda and developed a relationship with Sheilah Graham, the Hollywood gossip columnist. In this last period of his life his alcoholism had left him physically wrecked. After suffering a heart attack, in Schwab's Drug Store, he was ordered to avoid strenuous exertion. On the night of December 20, 1940, Fitzgerald and Sheilah Graham attended the premiere of This Thing Called Love. As they left Fitzgerald went dizzy; upset, he said to Graham, "They think I am drunk, don't they?" The following day, Graham saw him jump from his armchair, grab the mantelpiece, gasp, and fall to the floor.


Compare

Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was born on September 24th 1896 in Saint Paul, Minnesota, to an upper-middle-class family. His early years in Buffalo, New York showed him to be a boy of high intelligence and drive with a thirst for literature. In 1908, his father was fired from Procter & Gamble, and the family returned to Minnesota. Here Fitzgerald attended St. Paul Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was born on September 24th 1896 in Saint Paul, Minnesota, to an upper-middle-class family. His early years in Buffalo, New York showed him to be a boy of high intelligence and drive with a thirst for literature. In 1908, his father was fired from Procter & Gamble, and the family returned to Minnesota. Here Fitzgerald attended St. Paul Academy, in St. Paul, until 1911. At 13 he was published in the school newspaper, it was, of all things, a detective story. In 1911, aged 15, he was sent to the prestigious Newman School, in Hackensack, New Jersey.And, after graduating in 1913, he decided to continue at Princeton University. Here he firmly dedicated himself to writing. Unfortunately his writing pursuits came at the expense of his coursework. In 1917 he dropped out to join the U.S. Army. However this service to his country came with the very real fear that he might perish in the trenches of Western Europe with his literary dreams not yet begun. So he spent the weeks before reporting for duty at work on a novel entitled The Romantic Egotist. Fitzgerald was assigned to Camp Sheridan, in Alabama. It was there that Fitzgerald met the love of his life; Zelda Sayre, the "golden girl," of Montgomery youth society.The war ended before Fitzgerald could be deployed, and he moved to New York City hoping to start a career in advertising that would be lucrative enough to convince Zelda to marry him. Unable to convince her that his means were enough to support her she broke off the engagement.Fitzgerald returned to his parents in St. Paul, to revise The Romantic Egoist, now recast as This Side of Paradise. His revised novel was accepted by Scribner's and published in 1920 becoming an instant success. It launched Fitzgerald's career as a writer and provided a steady income suitable for Zelda's ambitions. The engagement resumed and they married at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York.Frances Scott "Scottie" Fitzgerald, their only child, was born on October 26, 1921. Inspired by the parties he had attended visiting Long Island's north shore Fitzgerald began planning the greatest of his novels, The Great Gatsby, in 1923, wanting to produce "something new—something extraordinary and beautiful and simple and intricately patterned." Published in April 1925, The Great Gatsby received mixed reviews and but sold 20,000 in its first year. Today, it is one of a small circle vying for the title "Great American Novel". Fitzgerald continued to supplement his income by writing short stories for magazines and to sell his stories and novels to Hollywood. He called this ‘whoring’. In February 1932, Zelda was hospitalized with schizophrenia. Fitzgerald's heavy and excessive drinking had now developed into alcoholism and with recurring financial difficulties, the emotional toll of Zelda's mental illness, this meant several difficult years. In 1937, Fitzgerald moved to Hollywood. His income improved but he found movies beneath his talents.He spent the second half of the 1930s in Hollywood, working on short stories, scripts for MGM, and his final novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon. In 1939, MGM ended the contract, and Fitzgerald became a writer for hire. Still an alcoholic, he now became estranged from Zelda and developed a relationship with Sheilah Graham, the Hollywood gossip columnist. In this last period of his life his alcoholism had left him physically wrecked. After suffering a heart attack, in Schwab's Drug Store, he was ordered to avoid strenuous exertion. On the night of December 20, 1940, Fitzgerald and Sheilah Graham attended the premiere of This Thing Called Love. As they left Fitzgerald went dizzy; upset, he said to Graham, "They think I am drunk, don't they?" The following day, Graham saw him jump from his armchair, grab the mantelpiece, gasp, and fall to the floor.

30 review for Tender is the Night: "Show me a hero and I will write you a tragedy."

  1. 4 out of 5

    Ann

    When Fitzgerald finished this gem, he was stunned by the poor reviews it received. I honestly think it's a profoundly more true and powerful book than Gatsby ever will be. His effortless and viceral writing tells a story of such complex and accurate human relationships, I often find myself reflecting on Dick Diver as a friend I should check up on, and part of me thinks I spent a year of my youth hanging out on the French Riveria having too much to drink, but somehow pulling it off When Fitzgerald finished this gem, he was stunned by the poor reviews it received. I honestly think it's a profoundly more true and powerful book than Gatsby ever will be. His effortless and viceral writing tells a story of such complex and accurate human relationships, I often find myself reflecting on Dick Diver as a friend I should check up on, and part of me thinks I spent a year of my youth hanging out on the French Riveria having too much to drink, but somehow pulling it off sophistication. Now that I sound like a lunatic, I must express this is not normal for me. The world and characters really got under my skin. After my first reading I woke myself by weeping...and I was weeping for the characters. That has never before or since happened to me. It is a work of profound beauty and pain about the resilience of the human spirit. If you're feeling the world is too glib, I feel this is a great antidote.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Martine

    How is one to feel about a protagonist who frequently displays signs of elitism, sexism, bigotry and homophobia, finds himself worryingly attracted to young girls, has no goal in life except to make himself useful to damsels in distress, and drinks away his career and marriage, ending up a mere shadow of his former self? Is one supposed to regard him as a tragic hero? Is one to sympathise with him? And if one does sympathise with him, is that because of the way he was written, or rather because How is one to feel about a protagonist who frequently displays signs of elitism, sexism, bigotry and homophobia, finds himself worryingly attracted to young girls, has no goal in life except to make himself useful to damsels in distress, and drinks away his career and marriage, ending up a mere shadow of his former self? Is one supposed to regard him as a tragic hero? Is one to sympathise with him? And if one does sympathise with him, is that because of the way he was written, or rather because we are aware that he is a thinly veiled version of the author himself, a giant of early-twentieth American literature? Those were some of the questions I pondered after reading Tender Is the Night, F. Scott Fitzgerald's last finished novel, and possibly his most autobiographical one. Set in France and Italy in the 1920s, it tells the story of two wealthy American expats, Dick and Nicole Diver (largely based on the author and his wife Zelda), who seem to others the most glamorous couple ever, 'as fine-looking a couple as could be found in Paris', but are finding their private lives increasingly less glamorous. We first see the couple through the eyes of Rosemary Hoyt, a young and naive American actress holidaying in Europe. Rosemary falls madly in love with suave Dick, but also admires angelic Nicole. After about 130 pages during which Rosemary hangs out with the Divers and nearly embarks on an affair with Dick, the narrative stops and goes back in time to tell the story of Dick and Nicole's marriage, which is considerably more complicated than Rosemary realises. Nicole, it turns out, has a history of mental illness, and Dick is both her husband and the doctor treating her -- a recipe for disaster, obviously. Being a tale of needy people, broken relationships, loss of purpose and wasted potential, Tender Is the Night is quite a depressing read, and one's appreciation of it largely depends on one's tolerance for that kind of thing. If you like your books bleak and tragic, chances are you'll appreciate Tender Is the Night. If not, you might want to steer clear of it. I generally love a good tragedy, but I confess I wasn't overly impressed with Tender Is the Night. For a book which has garnered so many rave reviews, I found it remarkably flawed. Fitzgerald himself seems to have somewhat agreed with me. Despite referring to Tender Is the Night as his masterpiece and being shocked by its lack of critical and commercial success, he began reconstructing it a few years before his death, placing the flashback chapters at the beginning and making all the textual alterations required by this change. However, he died before he could finish the project, or perhaps he abandoned the project as not worth completing (no one seems to know for sure). A friend of his, Malcolm Cowley, then completed the revision, and for years this was the standard edition of the book. However, the Cowley version has fallen into scholarly disfavour (or so Penguin informs me), and several publishers, Penguin included, now use the first edition, the one that Fitzgerald thought needed revision. Apparently, there are no fewer than seventeen versions of the novel extant, which says much about how satisfied Fitzgerald was with his own work. My guess? Not very much. I read a version based on the first edition of the book, and to be honest, I can see why Fitzgerald felt it needed some work. Tender Is the Night felt very disjointed to me. To a certain extent, this was because of the aforementioned non-linear structure, which felt a bit jarring to me. However, as far as I'm concerned, that is not the book's only problem, nor even its biggest one. What most annoyed me was the way in which the perspective keeps shifting. Fitzgerald uses an omniscient narrator in Tender Is the Night, but not consistently so; the story is always written from a certain character's perspective. Sometimes the perspective is Rosemary's, sometimes it's Dick or Nicole's; even the minor characters have stretches of the story told from their perspectives, often on the same page as a main character's perspective. To me, these shifts in point of view often felt haphazard, not to mention a little jarring. I didn't think they were particularly effective, either, as they hardly build on each other and don't provide any information that couldn't be gleaned from a 'regular' omniscient narrator. I may be in a minority here, but I think the book would have benefited from a more consistent approach to perspective. The story itself is a bit haphazard, as well. It occasionally drags, it has little plot, and there are quite a few scenes and storylines which don't really go anywhere. Among several other seemingly unlikely scenes, the book contains a murder, a shooting and a duel, none of which is fully integrated into the story, and none of which is given proper significance. Scenes are introduced and then left so randomly that you have to wonder why Fitzgerald bothered to include them at all. At the risk of being unkind and judgemental, I guess that's what being an alcoholic will do for an author: it gives you wild ideas, but prevents you from carrying them out properly. Which brings me to the characterisation. I'll probably get a lot of flak for this, but I felt that Fitzgerald's vaunted characterisation was a bit 'off' in this novel. Many of the minor characters are sketchily drawn, whereas the main characters are described well (sometimes brilliantly so), but never properly explained. While Fitzgerald does a good (and occasionally excellent) job of sharing his protagonists' feelings, he hardly ever bothers to explain their motivations. This particularly bothered me in the parts written from Dick Diver's point of view, as Dick is supposed to be a psychiatrist. By rights, he should be analysing people actions and motivations all the time, and asking lots of questions. However, Dick hardly ever asks questions. He does not even ask himself questions. He never wonders why he is so drawn to young girls, or what it is in him that causes him to need to be their saviour. He just observes other people in a way of which any intelligent person (trained psychologist or not) would be capable, and then describes their behaviour in a few felicitous phrases. For this and other reasons, I didn't buy Dick Diver as a psychiatrist. Fitzgerald may have read up on psychology (and undoubtedly learned a lot from the doctors who treated his own wife), but I never found his alter ego convincing as a psychiatrist, let alone a brilliant psychiatrist. To me, Dick has 'writer' written all over him. It's a pity I kept finding such flaws, because Tender Is the Night obviously had the potential to be amazing. It has all the right ingredients: interesting (albeit snobbish and bored) characters, powerful themes, evocative (albeit frequently vague) writing, you name it. And the story certainly doesn't lack in pathos. It is quite harrowing to watch Dick Diver, a supposedly brilliant and popular man who never lives up to his potential and is increasingly torn asunder by money, alcoholism and his failed marriage to a mentally ill woman, go to pieces, becoming, in his own words, 'the Black Death' ('I don't seem to bring people happiness any more'). The fact that this was Fitzgerald writing about himself, about his own frustrations and shattered dreams, adds considerable poignancy to the reading experience. Even so, Tender Is the Night ended up leaving me fairly cold, as I simply didn't care for Dick enough to be genuinely moved by his descent into failure. While others may find Dick a swell guy, I myself found his complacency and lack of purpose grating, his alcoholism exasperating, and his brilliance skin-deep. I seem to be alone in this opinion, but I stand by it. In summary, then, I enjoyed and admired aspects of Tender Is the Night, but I don't think they add up to a great whole. While I appreciate Fitzgerald's brutal honesty and the masterful way in which he evokes mutual dependence, isolation and frustration, I can't shake off the feeling that the book could have been much better than it ended up being. And this pains me, as I hate wasted potential as much as Fitzgerald himself seems to have done. As it is, Tender Is the Night is in my opinion not just a book about wasted potential, but an example of wasted potential. It is fitting, I suppose, but no less disappointing for that. 3.5 stars, rounded down to three because I really didn't like it as much as many of the books I have given four stars lately.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jeffrey Keeten

    I don't ask you to love me always like this, but I ask you to remember. Somewhere inside me there'll always be the person I am to-night. If you were to meet Dick and Nicole Diver at a party, a restaurant, or on the beach, you would leave them feeling as if you had been in the presence of greatness. They are both witty, charming, gorgeous, majestic, sexy, and in command of whatever situation they find themselves in. They are the sun and moon merged together, and no one shines brighter in the “I don't ask you to love me always like this, but I ask you to remember. Somewhere inside me there'll always be the person I am to-night.” If you were to meet Dick and Nicole Diver at a party, a restaurant, or on the beach, you would leave them feeling as if you had been in the presence of greatness. They are both witty, charming, gorgeous, majestic, sexy, and in command of whatever situation they find themselves in. They are the sun and moon merged together, and no one shines brighter in the daylight or in the moonlight. They are what many aspire to be, but few will ever achieve, the suave assurance of the Diver couple. As Rosemary Hoyt, a burgeoning movie starlet, says after meeting them, ”The Divers made her want to stay near them forever.” She loves them both, but she wants a part of Dick for herself. She might be naive, but even she senses that to break them apart dissipates the magic of the two of them together. The Divers are at the height of their power when Rosemary meets them. Nicole Warren is obscenely rich, and Dick is a successful, published psychologist. They met when Nicole was suffering a mental breakdown. Dick brought her back from the brink. ”They were more interested in Nicole’s exterior harmony and charm, the other face of her illness. She led a lonely life owning Dick who did not want to be owned.” The Warren family is used to owning everything in their universe. She is so beautiful and tragic, and Dick, like most of us, wants to preserve lovely things. He is on the verge of reaching the pinnacle of his profession. He is breaking new ground and getting noticed by the top men (this is 1929) in his field. That drive he has to succeed erodes as he starts to enjoy the life on the Riviera more than the life in a clinic in Zurich. Who wouldn’t? Aren’t we supposed to enjoy being rich? Dick is well aware that there is only a small window in every smart man’s life to experience success. ”You’ve taught me that work is everything and I believed you. You used to say a man knows things and when he stops knowing things he’s like everyone else, and the thing is to get power before he stops knowing things.” F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald It is impossible to separate F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda Sayre from the characters populating his novels. Their almost mythical love affair and the disastrous unraveling of their lives are mined heavily by Scott for his novels and stories. Zelda was often exasperated to find something gay and spirited she had said at a party or something dark and insightful she may have shared in the privacy of the bedroom show up in Scott’s writing. She was in many ways the subject of all of his writing. She was certainly the muse. F. Scott drank too much, and Zelda slowly slid into madness. She died at 47 and he at 44. They had lives used up too quickly. Dick has Rosemary fluttering around him like a lovely, lustrous satellite, but Nicole has her numerous admirers, as well. Foremost of these is Tommy Barban. ”He sat in the only chair, dark, scarred and handsome, his eyebrows arched and upcurling, a fighting Puck, and earnest Satan.” He is virile and alive and lustful. He lacks Dick’s polish and sophistication, but then Dick, as he drinks more and more, isn’t exactly Dick anymore. “‘We can’t go on like this,’ Nicole suggested. ‘Or can we?--what do you think?’ Startled that for the moment Dick did not deny it, she continued, ‘Some of the time I think it’s my fault--I’ve ruined you.’ ‘So I’m ruined, am I?’ he inquired pleasantly. ‘I didn’t mean that. But you used to want to create things--now you seem to want to smash them up.’” As Dick and Nicole’s dependency on one another becomes more and more uncertain, the influences of others start to drive wedges between them. It is like watching the disintegration of a monument. They can not find the synergy with other people that they had together, but they can’t find it with each other anymore, either. The whole was greater than the sum of their parts. Fitzgerald is wonderful at dangling this world of infinite possibility that so infused the 1920s era. Living for today, not worrying about tomorrow, and not letting the past be a burden on the present. Even as he shows us this glittering world, he begins to inch back the curtain to reveal the darkness that holds it all up. To be Dick and Nicole, they must be on the top of their game all the time. They are performance artists. They dazzle those fortunate enough to be around them, but like most rock stars, they start to feel the pressure to always entertain. Alcohol or drugs can take the edge off and temporarily make them feel like themselves, but eventually the centers of who they are become buried under the shimmering facades of the people everyone wants them to be. If you wish to see more of my most recent book and movie reviews, visit http://www.jeffreykeeten.com I also have a Facebook blogger page at:https://www.facebook.com/JeffreyKeeten

  4. 5 out of 5

    Jeanette (Again)

    This book is so pointless, you could read the chapters in random order and probably not feel like you'd missed much. This marks my second and final attempt to read it. I almost made it to the halfway point this time. If you loved The Great Gatsby, don't get your hopes up for this one to be anything close to that good. You'll be disappointed.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ahmad Sharabiani

    638. Tender is the Night, F. Scott Fitzgerald Tender Is the Night is the fourth and final novel completed by American writer F. Scott Fitzgerald. It was first published in Scribner's Magazine between January and April 1934 in four issues. Dick and Nicole Diver are a glamorous couple who take a villa in the South of France and surround themselves with a circle of friends, mainly Americans. Also staying at the resort are Rosemary Hoyt, a young actress, and her mother. Rosemary becomes infatuated 638. Tender is the Night, F. Scott Fitzgerald Tender Is the Night is the fourth and final novel completed by American writer F. Scott Fitzgerald. It was first published in Scribner's Magazine between January and April 1934 in four issues. Dick and Nicole Diver are a glamorous couple who take a villa in the South of France and surround themselves with a circle of friends, mainly Americans. Also staying at the resort are Rosemary Hoyt, a young actress, and her mother. Rosemary becomes infatuated with Dick and becomes close to Nicole. Dick toys with the idea of having an affair with Rosemary. Rosemary senses something is wrong with the couple, which is brought to light when one of the guests at a party reports having seen something strange in the bathroom. Tommy Barban, another guest, comes loyally to the defense of the Divers. The action involves various other friends, including the Norths, where a frequent occurrence is the drunken behavior of Abe North. The story becomes complicated when Jules Peterson, a black man, is murdered and ends up in Rosemary's bed, in a situation which could destroy Rosemary's career. Dick moves the blood-soaked body to cover up any implied relationship between Rosemary and Peterson. It is revealed that, as a promising young doctor and psychiatrist, Dick had taken on a patient with an especially complex case of neuroses. This patient is Nicole, whose sexual abuse by her father is suggested as the cause of her breakdown. As her treatment progresses, she becomes infatuated with Dick, who in turn develops Florence Nightingale syndrome. He eventually determines to marry Nicole, in part, as a means of providing her with lasting emotional stability. Strong objections are raised by Nicole's sister, who believes Dick is marrying Nicole because of her status as an heiress. Dick is offered a partnership in a Swiss clinic, and Nicole pays for the entire clinic. After his father's death Dick travels to America and then Rome in hopes to see Rosemary. They start a brief affair, which ends abruptly and painfully. Dick gets into an altercation with the police, and Nicole's sister helps him to get out of jail. Dick doesn't see how he can be the same person after such a humiliation. He gradually develops a drinking problem. After this becomes an issue with the patients, Dick's ownership share of the clinic is bought out by American investors following his partner's suggestion. Dick and Nicole's marriage breaks down when he becomes increasingly alcoholic and pines for Rosemary, who is now a successful Hollywood star. Nicole becomes increasingly aware of her independence. She distances herself from Dick as his confidence and friendliness turn into sarcasm and rudeness towards everyone. His constant unhappiness over what he could have been fuels his alcoholism, and Dick becomes increasingly embarrassing in social and familial situations. Nicole enters into an affair with Tommy Barban. Nicole divorces Dick and marries Barban. ... تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز هفدهم ماه نوامبر سال 2011 میلادی عنوان: لطیف است شب؛ نویسنده: فرانسیس اسکات فیتزجرالد؛ مترجم: اکرم پدرام نیا؛ تهران، نشر قطره، هنوز، 1388، در 491 ص؛ شابک: 9789643419646؛ چاپ دیگر: تهران، میلکان، 1393؛ در 370 ص؛ شابک: 9786007443378؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان امریکایی - سده 20 م رمان «لطیف است شب»، داستان روانپزشک جذابی ست، به نام: «دیک دایور»، که همسری زیبا و ثروتمند، ولی روانپریش، به نام: «نیکول» دارد. ورود «دیک» به رمان، در فصل نخست، و در ساحل رویایی «ریوریرای فرانسه»، رخ می‌دهد. نویسنده ی «گتسبی بزرگ»، باز هم میدرخشند، این‌ها نخستین تصاویری هستند، که از جغرافیای اروپا بر صفحه نقش می‌بندند، نقل از متن کتاب: «بر کرانه‌ ی دلپذیر ریویرای فرانسه... هتل و ساحل درخشان آن، که به جانمازی آجری رنگ میمانست... در تمام منطقه، فقط همین ساحل در حرکت و جنب و جوش بود...» پایان نقل. شخصیت «دیک» با پیشروی داستان، به دلیل بیماری همسرش، دچار تزلزل می‌شود. جرقه‌ ی فرود از فراز او، با دل‌دادگی «رزماری» ستاره نوپای هالیوودی به وی، با آغاز دوباره ی حملات روان‌ پریشانه‌ ی «نیکول»، آغاز می‌شود. اگر ابتدای رمان، یعنی سواحل دریا را، مقایسه کنیم با خطوط پایانی داستان، شخصیت «دیک» انگار دیگر شده است، و ایشان دیگر آن مرد موفق همیشگی نیست: «از شهری به شهر دیگر...»؛ و این جمله‌ ی پایانی کتاب است، و انگار نقطه‌ ی پایان «دیک دایور» باشد، و البته که در فروترین فرود. آزاد منشی «دیک»، که با آن موج‌های روان و آرام دریا، بر فراز بود و معنی می‌یافت، حالا جایش را به درماندگی داده، و فرود از فراز به سرانجام رسیده است. «لطیف است شب» که عنوان شاعرانه‌ ای هم هست، عنوانش را از شعر «کیتس» برگرفته: «بر بال‌های نامرئی شعر / ذهن کـُـندم چه گیج است و عقب / در کنار تو چه لطیف است شب / ماه ملکه کامیاب نشسته بر تخت / و پریانِ ستاره، گرد او پر طرب / ولی اینجا تاریک است شب.» کتاب جزو صد رمان برتر سده ی بیستم میلادی است. «ارنست همینگوی» بارها «لطیف است شب» را بهترین اثر دوست صمیمی‌ خویش، «اسکات» نامیده است. ا. شربیانی

  6. 4 out of 5

    Warwick

    I meanit begins badly, tails off a bit in the middle, and the less said about the ending the better. Occasionally, there are books that leave you at a loss as to how to dismiss them. Reading this I kept thinking of a line from Stoppard's The Real Thing: Theres something scary about stupidity made coherent. I can deal with idiots, and I can deal with sensible argument, but I dont know how to deal with you. Tender is the Night is not stupid, but it is, if you like, triviality made coherent. The I mean…it begins badly, tails off a bit in the middle, and the less said about the ending the better. Occasionally, there are books that leave you at a loss as to how to dismiss them. Reading this I kept thinking of a line from Stoppard's The Real Thing: ‘There’s something scary about stupidity made coherent. I can deal with idiots, and I can deal with sensible argument, but I don’t know how to deal with you.’ Tender is the Night is not stupid, but it is, if you like, triviality made coherent. The story of a wealthy married couple going through a mid-life crisis, it's such a nothingy narrative couched in formally perfect prose that attacking it feels like swinging at a ghost – the disparity between form and content is dizzying. It's like watching Stephen Hawking spend half an hour punching something into his speech computer, only to hear it reel off a haiku about Joey Essex. Where to start. Construction-wise, it's a complete mess; Fitzgerald realised this, and was still rearranging chapters until he died, hoping for a rehabilitation which the novel has eventually found (it was panned on release). In its original, and most commonly printed, form, the first hundred and twenty pages introduce a baffling profusion of characters with no discernible story, at which point the narrative drops back a few years to set up the main couple of Dick and Nicole, a charmless pair of socialites based fairly closely on F. Scott and Zelda. A chronological reordering might, perhaps, solve some of the problems, although personally I would advocate cutting the opening section altogether, dropping the middle bit, and then drastically abridging the end section, so that you're left with a slim pamphlet consisting of a nice speech about the First World War, some good descriptions of Zurich, an extramarital fumble in a French hotel room, and then a speedy conclusion. Job done. Instead it just goes on and on, retailing anecdotes about peripheral characters who seem to spend the whole book going through a series of boring encounters designed only to highlight the period's casual racism, homophobia and misogyny. It's difficult to overstress how little I cared about anyone in here. The settings – Nice, Rome, Lausanne – should provide colour, but in fact they have few distinguishing features, becoming interchangeable stops on a general American-eye view of Yurp. In Gatsby I had loved Fitzgerald's nocturnal flights of melancholy prose; here, instead, he seems to be in a sort of Hemingway mode, all flat cynicism and brittle dialogue and bitter comments about ‘the opportunistic memory of women’. Most of all, perhaps, I hated the equation drawn between professional productivity and personal happiness. The long, drawn-out decline and fall which comprises the latter half of the novel tries to show that Dick is a failure as a man because he never completed his book and because he develops a greater affection for his children. Don't get me wrong, Dick is – well – he's a dick, isn't he – but all the same, I thought it seemed a bit unfair to argue that because he chooses not to fight to keep his adulterous wife, and instead ends up practising medicine in a tiny town in New York state, that he's somehow therefore an archetypal symbol of a wasted life.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Vessey

    SPOILERS "He wished she had no background, that she was just a girl lost with no address save the night from which she had come." Tender is the Night is a love story. It is also a story about loneliness. But mostly, it is about the need to love and belong. Dick Diver falls in love with mentally ill woman and marries her. But he never truly finds happiness with her. He falls in love with an young actress, but he never gets to be with her, because his connection with and his love for his sick wife SPOILERS "He wished she had no background, that she was just a girl lost with no address save the night from which she had come." Tender is the Night is a love story. It is also a story about loneliness. But mostly, it is about the need to love and belong. Dick Diver falls in love with mentally ill woman and marries her. But he never truly finds happiness with her. He falls in love with an young actress, but he never gets to be with her, because his connection with and his love for his sick wife are too strong. And he goes through life alone, leading a battle that cannot be won. This is a beautiful and touching book, but it is also adamant in the way it shows what loneliness, what falling in love with the wrong person can do to us. Still, does loving a person you cannot be happy with mean that you have truly chosen (as much as love is choice) the wrong person? There are those of us who love those that cannot be reached, that cannot be saved, even those don’t love us back. For which do we need bigger strength? To quit loving such person or to go on loving them? Is Dick’s growing detachment from Nicole a sign for the diminishing of his love or his loss of hope? Can a distinction be made? Do we love a person only when we believe there is a chance for them to turn into what we need them to be and for us to be happy with them? We dream of finding that perfect person, for the connection that breaks us apart and builds us all over again, but what happens when we meet an already broken person whose pieces are there, waiting for us to pick them up and put the puzzle back together, only to realize that there will always be a piece that will be missing, that won’t fit as we need it to? I believe that when we love, it is forever. Love that dies is no love, unless the object of our love changes severely. But maybe sometimes the person hasn’t become so different as we think, maybe they are the same, and it us who have changed without realizing it and this has lead to a change of heart. “Think how you love me. I don’t ask you to love me always like this, but I ask you to remember. Somewhere inside me there’ll always be the person I am tonight.” If the person we have grown to love stays forever there, under some form, does the part of us that loves this person goes on existing even while we feel that with another part of ourselves we slip away from our loved one’s reach and start needing new horizons, new lands to explore, new hearts to conquer? Is there such thing as loving only with a part of yourself or is love something that sweeps you completely and you love with your whole being? Do humans have the potential, the depth to love absolutely and completely? Or is love fragmented, like we are fragmented? Is it possible for the part that loves and the part that stays indifferent (or even hates) to be two sides of the same coin, two faces of the same feeling? Dick Diver goes on loving his wife, but a part of him grows cold. This terrible contradiction comes not from weakening of his love for her, but from his inability to connect to her. Are love and connection the same thing? I thought so. I am not so sure anymore. He loves her, but feels disconnected from her. "He moved on through the rain, demoniac and frightened, the passions of many men inside him and nothing simple that he could see." If we are ready to love without connection does that make our love extraordinarily strong or not strong enough? Can a man who loves a woman whole-heartedly accept only half of her, fragments of her, isn’t the strongest kind of love the one that compels us to either have a full possession of somebody or walk away, because we love them too much to bear to have only fragments of them? Or is the strongest love the one because of which we are ready to make any sacrifices and accept even the smallest particles, when even the smallest piece is better than nothing, when we are ready to sacrifice our life, our pride, our very essence? Dick Diver feels like he has lost an essential part of himself, a part that leaves any real feeling in him incomplete. If we sacrifice too much for the loved one, so much as we no longer feel as ourselves, can love survive? Does true love transcends all? Which is the stronger? The love we bear for the other person or our sense of self? When the sense of self vanishes, do we keep loving? Would Dick have been happier had he left Nicole? Would he have been happy with Rosemary? I think not. When we love somebody, we bear all their baggage, their pain overwhelms us, it becomes a part of us, but the same is valid for their joy, for everything amazing they are and everything amazing they give us. We are overwhelmed, but the mere fact that we love someone so deeply as to let ourselves be overwhelmed gives us a sense of security and belonging and fullness. "He knew that the price of his intactness was incompleteness." They made no love that day, but when he left her outside the sad door on the Zurichsee and she turned and looked at him he knew her problem was one they had together for good now Is his love for her weakness or strength? Or both? When we truly love, how much do we belong to ourselves and how much to the other person? "There were now no more plans than if he had arbitrarily made some indissoluble mixture, with atoms joined and inseparable; you could throw it all out but never again could they fit back into atomic scale. As he held her and tasted her, and as she curved in further and further toward him, new to herself, drowned and engulfed in love, he was thankful to have an existence at all, if only as a reflection in her wet eyes." I believe that no two people are absolutely alike or absolutely different, therefore there is no such thing as an absolute harmony or absolute disconnection. The relationship between Dick and Nicole, however strong or weak, keeps on living and tearing him apart. When the relationship does not bring us happiness, when the pain prevails, is it still love? Does true love mean that no matter the circumstances, we can always find some happiness, some spark there? Or do we love even when the passion no longer exists and desperation and emptiness fill our hearts and minds and hang over us and touch us like a pale, cold sun, so alike and unlike the real one that once kept it all alive, but has now melted and disappeared into space, leaving us merely with the memory? It was not so much infatuation as a romantic memory. She was still his girl Tender Is the Night left me incredibly satisfied and yearning at the same time. I wish Scott Fitzgerald had developed Nicole’s character more. Or Rosemary’s. But with Dick himself being the main focus and how his love and longing, pain and loneliness affect his life and personality, they were more of a catalyst for him than actual characters in the novel. I think that had Fitzgerald given them more personality, this would have been a five-star book for me. Still, it was a great experience. One I am tempted to go back to one day. Read count: 1

  8. 4 out of 5

    Ilse

    To me the title was the best part of the book.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    This is my favorite Fitzgerald book. I read it back to back with This Side of Paradise last year, which was an interesting experiment. I had the young, beautiful, self-confident Fitzgerald and the Fitzgerald of post-Zelda's craziness, dark dark alcoholic Fitzgerald. Besides showing obviously how much his skills had improved, it showed the sheer range he was capable of as well. This is a dark, depressing novel. Loss, loneliness, isolation, desolation. It does not end well. But the sheer power of This is my favorite Fitzgerald book. I read it back to back with This Side of Paradise last year, which was an interesting experiment. I had the young, beautiful, self-confident Fitzgerald and the Fitzgerald of post-Zelda's craziness, dark dark alcoholic Fitzgerald. Besides showing obviously how much his skills had improved, it showed the sheer range he was capable of as well. This is a dark, depressing novel. Loss, loneliness, isolation, desolation. It does not end well. But the sheer power of the prose, and just how completely lost everything is here can't fail to get to you. The story is so tight, well put together, flows along without a hitch. It sinks you slowly lower and lower and lower until you're hardly aware of just how dark of a place the novel has gone. And then all of a sudden things evaporate, and there you are. Just like Fitzgerald. Wandering off the last page. Really. I recommend it to everyone. Do give it a try.

  10. 4 out of 5

    ariel

    i knew a dick once. his name was sam, and he was a star. people gravitated toward him everywhere he went. i did, too. he radiated light and fun and when he talked to you, he made you feel like the most important person in the room. he partied hard, and he was the type of person you wanted to party with, because it was always a good time. he was the son of a diplomat, knew five languages, and always knew exactly what to say or do to get the situation how he wanted it. when i was about sixteen, we i knew a dick once. his name was sam, and he was a star. people gravitated toward him everywhere he went. i did, too. he radiated light and fun and when he talked to you, he made you feel like the most important person in the room. he partied hard, and he was the type of person you wanted to party with, because it was always a good time. he was the son of a diplomat, knew five languages, and always knew exactly what to say or do to get the situation how he wanted it. when i was about sixteen, we spent an amazing weekend together, that took us from manhattan to new jersey to connecticut, all for good reason, and it was one of the most memorable weekends of my life. we talked very infrequently for the next few years, and then we hit it back up again, online, and he was such a blast to talk to. so we made plans to meet up. but i was older and wiser then. and as much as i wanted to be with him, to breathe in his intensity, his vitality, i was more guarded. id been burned by then. by friends who were fun and energetic but weren't, when it came down to it, there in any meaningful way. there was one in particular who taught me that lesson... and when sam inevitably disappointed me, i stood my ground. i didnt want to be friends with someone like that. i said that i wanted to believe he wasnt like that, that he was all the positive things i knew to be true but also reliable--that he was reliable--but that now i knew he wasnt. i wanted him to fight for me. to show me i was wrong. if he had insisted, i'm sure i would have continued to be friends with him. and it wasnt like a hard line was drawn in the sand or anything. but he just wasnt interested in continuing a friendship with someone who maybe wasnt as dazzled by him anymore, i think. but as things worked out, that was the last time i spoke to him. he died four years ago. that they held memorial services in literally ten different countries. so, see, i'm not exaggerating the effect he had on people. i'm not sure what my point is, except that dick reminded me of sam. and like sam... dick was a remarkable character. i was so disappointed in his decisions, wanted to be disgusted by his actions... but somehow, what i really felt, was empathy. love. pity. there's so much pain in this book, so much longing, so much sorrow. i dont know. i guess maybe life is just hard for everyone, and when faced head on with that, it's hard to begrudge him his choices.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Tender is Night or so they say. I say tender is a woman's psyche, and the man's ego that tries to make it strong. Too bad both of them suffer from a severe case of asshatitis. "Tender is the Night" is the story of Dick Diver and his Wife Nicole. You don't actually find this out until a fourth of the way into the book. At first we meet the happy couple through the eyes of Rosemary, a young actress from America with a Norman Bates styled affinity for "Mother." She quickly latches onto Mr. Diver, Tender is Night or so they say. I say tender is a woman's psyche, and the man's ego that tries to make it strong. Too bad both of them suffer from a severe case of asshatitis. "Tender is the Night" is the story of Dick Diver and his Wife Nicole. You don't actually find this out until a fourth of the way into the book. At first we meet the happy couple through the eyes of Rosemary, a young actress from America with a Norman Bates styled affinity for "Mother." She quickly latches onto Mr. Diver, his charms no match for her ignorance and youth. They all hang out together, doing rich people things like eating, and hanging out at the beach, and hating minorities (It is the 20's after all), and all other sorts of things that make you want to slash the tires on their Rolls. Book two abandons Rosemary and we focus on Dick Diver, Psychiatrist at Large. He doesn't actually do much psycho analyzing, but spends most of his time wondering why he married Nicole in the first place and developing a drinking problem. Turns out Nicole is cuckoo for cocoa puffs, and Dick married her with some God complex of trying to save her. But all he ends up doing is ruining himself. Book three continues the downfall, kind of told through Nicole's eyes. Dick falls further and further down the rabbit hole while Nicole seems to see daylight in the fog of her crazy. She ends up pulling a Dick (Diver. Head out of the gutter people) but with the opposite reaction of what it did to him. I think. This book isn't necessarily long, though it feels like it. Long passages of time pass in one paragraph, making it confusing and a rather dull read. None of the characters are likable, and I think you end up just wishing all of them went the way of Abe North. Speaking of, what the heck DID happen to Abe North. That story line was never really resolved. They say it took him forever to write this and it kind of feels like it. It doesn't connect very well and you wonder how much is Fitz's desperate cry for help from his own life full of money and ruin. Can anyone tell me why I am supposed to love Fitzgerald so much?

  12. 4 out of 5

    Shovelmonkey1

    For the longest time I lived an F. Scott Fitzgerald free existence. The name was familiar enough although I mostly associated it with those bulky Penguin Classics which are prone to making me break out in a cold-sweat. Weighty tomes burdened by commentary on class difference, forbidden or tormented or doomed romance, some of which are drier than a mouthful of Jacob's Crackers. I am F. Scott Fitzgerald-free no longer! And how glad does this make me? Very. I read The Great Gatsby a couple of For the longest time I lived an F. Scott Fitzgerald free existence. The name was familiar enough although I mostly associated it with those bulky Penguin Classics which are prone to making me break out in a cold-sweat. Weighty tomes burdened by commentary on class difference, forbidden or tormented or doomed romance, some of which are drier than a mouthful of Jacob's Crackers. I am F. Scott Fitzgerald-free no longer! And how glad does this make me? Very. I read The Great Gatsby a couple of months ago and decided to go for a second hit with Tender is the Night, Fitzgerald's almost autobiographical tale of gilt edged glitz which conceals the slow ripening of mental decay on the French Riviera. But first I need to get the childishness out of the way. I approached this book with all literary seriousness - arched eyebrow, wire rimmed glasses and a suitable severe chignon and after a medium sized smirk at introduction to the principle character with the manly moniker, Dick Diver, I was prepared to be serious again. Then it hit me. Page 4. There it was. "Lucky Dick, you big stiff" he whispered to himself. And then I rolled off the sofa, laughing. And so begins my encounter with Tender is the Night, which is otherwise quite serious but in places, far from tender. Published in 1934, at a time of economic austerity, Fitzgerald's emotionally disturbed tale of rich people being a bit sad, but still being rich, was not well received and was soundly panned in a number of reviews. Presumably the people of America waved their empty plates, wiped the dust from their eyes and shouted "Yes life is not great but try an empty belly, Dust Pneumonia and burying your own children". Mental health and sexual abuse, are by no means, trifling issues and they are key issues in Tender is the Night, however set against a back drop of yachts, lavish parties and luxury mansions at a time of national economic catastrophe, well presumably they just seemed a bit less important. Add to this to the fact that frankly, none of the characters are particularly likeable, well you can see why people looked askance at the time. Dick Diver falls into a number of unfortunate but obvious traps. Marries way out of his league, marries a mentally unstable patient with whom he was originally professionally involved and then to cap it all, has an affair. Way to go Dick. I'm pretty sure that the Hippocratic oath probably says "don't do this" against all of these possible actions. Because this book is based on Fitzgerald's own experiences with his wife Zelda it is better than Gatsby. Not happier, not brighter, not more exhilarating to read but it has a clarity that makes the characters more real. After all, nobody said you had to like them or their actions.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Helene Jeppesen

    1.5/5 stars. This book was a hot mess and such a disappointment compared to "The Great Gatsby" which is a favourite of mine. Right from the beginning, I had no idea where this dishevelled story was going, and having now finished it I'm still not sure what the overall point of it was. Sure, "Tender Is the Night" comes with some beautiful passages and observations on life and people, but it also comes with a bunch of contradicting themes and destinies that all go in different directions. I get 1.5/5 stars. This book was a hot mess and such a disappointment compared to "The Great Gatsby" which is a favourite of mine. Right from the beginning, I had no idea where this dishevelled story was going, and having now finished it I'm still not sure what the overall point of it was. Sure, "Tender Is the Night" comes with some beautiful passages and observations on life and people, but it also comes with a bunch of contradicting themes and destinies that all go in different directions. I get that the overall storyline is about Nicole's and Dick's marriage but I didn't really care about them. The same goes for pretty much all of the characters except for Rosemary whom I found blossoming and therefore interesting. Unfortunately, we don't get to hear much about her. I didn't hate this book (I did finish it, after all), but I didn't like it much either. It's going to be interesting to see how my last book by Fitzgerald, "This Side of Paradise", is going to go down with me.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Sawsan

    Losing is a part of being a human, and sometimes the more you lose, the more vulnerable and tender you are a kind of social and psychological story follows the life of Dick Diver and the nature of his marital relationship over years his life gradually was torn apart, he was lost between a trivial life, the psychological problems of his wife, faded career and an affair with a young actress finding himself adrift in a world that is entirely purposeless bitter but beautiful written novel, Fitzgerald Losing is a part of being a human, and sometimes the more you lose, the more vulnerable and tender you are a kind of social and psychological story follows the life of Dick Diver and the nature of his marital relationship over years his life gradually was torn apart, he was lost between a trivial life, the psychological problems of his wife, faded career and an affair with a young actress finding himself adrift in a world that is entirely purposeless bitter but beautiful written novel, Fitzgerald writes cleverly about the glamorous entertaining life of rich people at the french riviera apparently the novel reflects Fitzgerald's own experiences and struggles with alcoholism and being with a partner suffering from mental illness

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kirk

    This is a hard but necessary book to read. It should be the type of plot we're attracted to, because it's a dissolution story, not unlike LOST WEEKEND or LEAVING LAS VEGAS, to name but two examples of the genre. And yet many friends I share this with just can't get into it. Part of the blame lies with the style: it's just so damned intricate and thick, it tends to scare away those who don't want to be ravished by style. As someone who does, I can get lost in this book any day of the week. I This is a hard but necessary book to read. It should be the type of plot we're attracted to, because it's a dissolution story, not unlike LOST WEEKEND or LEAVING LAS VEGAS, to name but two examples of the genre. And yet many friends I share this with just can't get into it. Part of the blame lies with the style: it's just so damned intricate and thick, it tends to scare away those who don't want to be ravished by style. As someone who does, I can get lost in this book any day of the week. I reread this for work probably once a year, and I'm always amazed at how fresh it seems to me---mainly because I'm always discovering a line or phrase that I'd passed over. Other reasons to like TITN: It's Fitzgerald's most experimental, with just about every modernist trick in the book. It has two fantastic heroines that come to life when they emerge from Dick Diver's point of view: Nicole and Rosemary. There are glamorous excursions from Nice to Paris and Rome. It has that overwhelming sense of abstraction---it feels like you're reading history, a socialist critique of excess capitalism (check out the chapter on Nicole's shopping spree), a look into the prurience and spectatorship of early filmmaking, a dressing down of romanticism, and a love story about the impossibility of love. Oh, and its so achingly, gloriously sad---I think that's the main reason I consider it a classic.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Steven Godin

    Time is our most valuable commodity. Had enough of this!, Dick is precisely one of those, Rosemary is leaving me with clammy hands of bored annoyance, and Nicole appears to be living on another planet. Two reasons why the two stars, Beautiful sounding title The French Riviera Two reasons that stopped me trowing this out the window in frustration, It's a borrowed book (from a rather charming lady) Wouldn't want to knock somebody out on the sidewalk, I am on the fourth floor!

  17. 5 out of 5

    Empress

    I am trying to like this book because for some reason I think that I should. But, in truth, I am finding it quite dull and painfully slow. Maybe I lack in patience or sophistication, because--given other reviews of this book--there is a good chance I am missing something (or simply haven't read enough into it yet--apparently it gets good after the tedious first 100 pages...) But so far, I am pretty seriously bored and disintersted in his saga about rich people, poor misunderstood movie stars and I am trying to like this book because for some reason I think that I should. But, in truth, I am finding it quite dull and painfully slow. Maybe I lack in patience or sophistication, because--given other reviews of this book--there is a good chance I am missing something (or simply haven't read enough into it yet--apparently it gets good after the tedious first 100 pages...) But so far, I am pretty seriously bored and disintersted in his saga about rich people, poor misunderstood movie stars and their shallow love affairs, dull parties and dumb problems. I keep thinking of that Edie Sedgwick movie for some reason...(no offense to Edie or Andy, or Scott for that matter!) Every once in a while there is a great line though, so, hey. And, I do so love the name of this book--five stars for that at least! OK, now I feel justified in my dislike of this book: their night: by bukowski "never could read Tender Is the Night but they've made a tv adaptation of the book and it's been running for several nights and i have spent ten minutes here and there watching the troubles of the rich while they are leaning against their beach chairs in Nice or walking about their large rooms drink in hand while making philosophical statements or fucking up at the dinner party or the dinner dance they really have no idea of what to do with themselves: swim? tennis? drive up the coast? find new beds? lose old ones? or fuck with the arts and the artists? having nothing to struggle against they have nothing to struggle for. the rich are different all right so is the ring- tailed maki and the sand flea." Thanks Hank (and Rob!) :)

  18. 5 out of 5

    ·Karen·

    There is something deeply ambivalent about Fitzgerald's appraisal of the dissipation, drunkenness and fatuous frivolity of a world to which he himself belonged. Surely we can only condemn the characters for their snobbery, their thoughtlessness, their attitude that money should get them out of the kind of difficulty that they have brought upon themselves through ignorance, self-deception or sheer bloody-mindedness? And yet at the same time we can feel sympathy for fragile Nicole, for Dick's There is something deeply ambivalent about Fitzgerald's appraisal of the dissipation, drunkenness and fatuous frivolity of a world to which he himself belonged. Surely we can only condemn the characters for their snobbery, their thoughtlessness, their attitude that money should get them out of the kind of difficulty that they have brought upon themselves through ignorance, self-deception or sheer bloody-mindedness? And yet at the same time we can feel sympathy for fragile Nicole, for Dick's descent into oblivion, for Rosemary's innocence. These are the characters that Fitzgerald treats with sympathy and kindness, whereas the McKiscos, whose only crime seems to be that they are not 'well-bred', are cruelly done by: Dick laid aside his reading and, after the few minutes that it took to realize the change in McKisco, the disappearance of the man’s annoying sense of inferiority, found himself pleased to talk to him. McKisco was “well-informed” on a range of subjects wider than Goethe’s — it was interesting to listen to the innumerable facile combinations that he referred to as his opinions. They struck up an acquaintance, and Dick had several meals with them. The McKiscos had been invited to sit at the captain’s table but with nascent snobbery they told Dick that they “couldn’t stand that bunch.” Violet was very grand now, decked out by the grand couturières, charmed about the little discoveries that well-bred girls make in their teens. She could, indeed, have learned them from her mother in Boise but her soul was born dismally in the small movie houses of Idaho, and she had had no time for her mother. Now she “belonged”— together with several million other people — and she was happy, though her husband still shushed her when she grew violently naïve. Does that reveal a deep-seated sense of superiority in the narrator, or is he making fun of the McKiscos' ambition, of their wish to belong to this tawdry world of high society? Does Dick marry Nicole for her money or for love? Is Dick brilliant or merely self-aggrandizing? There were so many questions left open in my mind, but then that is the mark of a classic, one that is not closed off, reduced to only one obvious interpretation, but a work that opens up possibilities in the imagination.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Rowena

    "After lunch they were both overwhelmed by the sudden flatness that comes over American travellers in quiet foreign places. No stimuli worked upon them, no voices called them from without, no fragments of heir own thoughts came suddenly from the minds of others, and missing the clamour of Empire they felt that life was not continuing here."- F. Scott Fitzgerald, Tender is the Night Fitzgerald has an absolutely beautiful way with words. He uses very stylized language and writes down some "After lunch they were both overwhelmed by the sudden flatness that comes over American travellers in quiet foreign places. No stimuli worked upon them, no voices called them from without, no fragments of heir own thoughts came suddenly from the minds of others, and missing the clamour of Empire they felt that life was not continuing here."- F. Scott Fitzgerald, Tender is the Night Fitzgerald has an absolutely beautiful way with words. He uses very stylized language and writes down some profound thoughts. And that’s what tricked me at first into thinking this would be a profound story. Like in The Great Gatsby, his characters are not likeable and just seem so disconnected from the world. It’s quite interesting reading Fitzgerald writing about American life in France, including black riots, at the same time that I was reading Langston Hughes The Great Big Sea: the contrast between the lives of black and white Americans in France in this period is huge. This is a story about rich Americans in the French Riviera. The story revolves in part around Dr. Dick Diver, charming man, the ultimate host and object of adoration of teenager Rosemary, an upcoming actress, who Fitzgerald describes thus: “Her body hovered delicately on the last edge of childhood–she was almost eighteen, nearly complete, but the dew was still on her.” Attraction between the two is immediate, despite the fact that Dick is married. I was raving about this book at first. Fitzgerald is an amazing writer and I think that his writing style initially blinded me to the flatness of the plot. The last thing I want to read is a book about privileged shallow and selfish rich people who are not introspective and just do whatever they please, but when Fitzgerald writes passages like the following, it makes it a bit easier to stomach, and fills you with hope that the characters in the book will say things you actually want to hear: “Following a walk marked by an intangible mist of bloom that followed the white border stones she came to a space overlooking the sea where there were lanterns asleep in the fig trees and a big table and wicker chairs and a great market umbrella from Sienna, all gathered about an enormous pine, the biggest tree in the garden. She paused there a moment, looking absently at a growth of nasturtiums and iris tangled at its foot, as though sprung from a careless handful of seeds, listening to the plaints and accusations of some nursery squabble in the house. When this died away on the summer air, she walked on, between kaleidoscopic peonies massed in pink clouds, black and brown tulips and fragile mauve-stemmed roses, transparent like sugar flowers in a confectioner’s window — until, as if the scherzo of color could reach no further intensity, it broke off suddenly in mid-air, and moist steps went down to a level five feet below.” But they didn’t. And after part 1 of the book, which I quite liked, which at least promised more, parts 2 and 3 fell extremely flat; I was completely let down. Part 1 of the book was basically rich people in Paris and the French Riviera, having parties and going shopping. Everything seems perfect but on the surface you are aware that some things are waiting to reveal themselves. In part 2 we find out what’s wrong and there is discussion of mental illness which I thought was quite candid and progressive for that time. Diver is a psychiatrist who is an admirer of Freud, so there is an interesting dialogue about psychology in this book. When we learn about how Diver met his wife, I was slightly disturbing, to be honest. Diver’s character was the most complex and I’m still not sure how I feel about him. He has a predilection towards young women and patients and although I felt this book was quite progressive seeing as it discussed mental health in the 1920s, I just couldn’t, in the end, get past the superficial and superfluous characters.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Michael Finocchiaro

    This was Fitzgerald's last book, the one after The Great Gatsby. It is extremely well-written and equally extremely depressing. There is murder and incest and the hapless Dick aimlessly looking for meaning in life and never quite finding it. It is definitely worth reading after you have finished Gatsby, but not recommended if you are already feeling blue because it will definitely not cheer you up. The language is superb though and therefore I gave it 4 stars.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Duane

    With the popularity of Fitzgerald, it's difficult to comprehend that he only wrote four novels, this being the last. It's a dark novel because it was written at a dark time in his life. Zelda's illness, financial problems, and alcoholism all contributed to Fitzgerald's frame of mind. I've read several negative reviews of this novel here on Goodreads saying it is depressing, the characters are shallow and unlikeable. That may be partly true, but their struggles and problems, their desires and With the popularity of Fitzgerald, it's difficult to comprehend that he only wrote four novels, this being the last. It's a dark novel because it was written at a dark time in his life. Zelda's illness, financial problems, and alcoholism all contributed to Fitzgerald's frame of mind. I've read several negative reviews of this novel here on Goodreads saying it is depressing, the characters are shallow and unlikeable. That may be partly true, but their struggles and problems, their desires and betrayals, are what make them so compelling and so real. One has to take context into consideration when reading a novel, especially the time period when the novel was written and set. Also the mentality of this set of people and the lifestyle they lived is almost incomprehensible to the average person today. It was a great read for me. I give it 4.5 stars, I can't quite put it on the same level as The Great Gatsby.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    In 1932, F Scott Fitgerald was living in suburban Baltimore. His father had recently died and his wife Zelda had been committed to a psychiatric institution in Switzerland. He finally decided that the novel on which he had been working on and off since the publication of The Great Gatsby in 1925 would be about the destruction of a man of great promise through an ill-judged marriage. In writing the novel, Fitzgerald liberally used material from his life. This material included his relationship In 1932, F Scott Fitgerald was living in suburban Baltimore. His father had recently died and his wife Zelda had been committed to a psychiatric institution in Switzerland. He finally decided that the novel on which he had been working on and off since the publication of The Great Gatsby in 1925 would be about the destruction of a man of great promise through an ill-judged marriage. In writing the novel, Fitzgerald liberally used material from his life. This material included his relationship with Zelda, their life together in France, the life-style of wealthy American expatriates Gerald and Sara Murphy, the death of his father, his alcoholism, what he had learned about psychiatry since Zelda had her first mental breakdown, and his despair at what he considered to be the waste of his potential as a writer. The novel which emerged from this extraordinarily difficult period in Fitzgerald's life is not easy to read. At first I thought I didn't want to keep reading, so little did I care about the characters and their concerns. However, when the narrative moved into flashback, detailing the circumstances leading up to the marriage of the central characters, Dick and Nicole Driver, I became interested in the narrative and that interest was sustained until the end. Knowing that this is the most autobiographical of Fitzgerald's works and understanding a little about the circumstances under which he wrote it adds poignancy to the reading experience. Fitzgerald clearly felt very sorry for himself, but from that self-pity was born a powerful and haunting novel.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Gemma

    I remember a long time ago watching and loving the BBC series of this. It wasnt as good as the ITV adaptation of Brideshead Revisited but its the only other TV book adaptation that has stayed with me from that period. Finally I read the novel. Its true its a bit messy at the beginning it took him more than ten years to write and he was often drunk during that period but once people stop shooting each other and it sharpens into the story of the break up of Dick and Nicoles marriage its just I remember a long time ago watching and loving the BBC series of this. It wasn’t as good as the ITV adaptation of Brideshead Revisited but it’s the only other TV book adaptation that has stayed with me from that period. Finally I read the novel. It’s true it’s a bit messy at the beginning – it took him more than ten years to write and he was often drunk during that period – but once people stop shooting each other and it sharpens into the story of the break up of Dick and Nicole’s marriage it’s just heartbreakingly beautiful. Fitzgerald’s prose is often breathtakingly gorgeous. It might not be as structurally sound as Gatsby but I found it more emotionally engaging.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Pink

    I have a lot of feelings about this book and about Scott and Zelda's relationship, which was the basis of this story. First of all, I think his writing is a mess. It's often in need of a good edit and here is no different. The chapters were shuffled around, looking for an order to make it work and finally settled with flashbacks, rather than a linear order. While I think that was the right decision, you can see that chapters could be chopped and changed and often read independently of one I have a lot of feelings about this book and about Scott and Zelda's relationship, which was the basis of this story. First of all, I think his writing is a mess. It's often in need of a good edit and here is no different. The chapters were shuffled around, looking for an order to make it work and finally settled with flashbacks, rather than a linear order. While I think that was the right decision, you can see that chapters could be chopped and changed and often read independently of one another. Perhaps this is a consequence of writing short stories and always having good snippets of a story, but never quite knowing how to link them all together. Of the essence of the novel, it's pure Scott and Zelda. So much so, that he reportedly stole sections of her own novel for this book, instead of passing it straight to the publishers, while she was being treated for manic depression. She often accused him of stealing ideas from her diaries throughout their marriage and true or not, he obviously used aspects of their life together. In Tender is the Night, we encounter heavy drinking, numerous affairs, furious rows and episodes of mental illness, all of which are well documented parts of their life. It's painfully intrusive, as we watch two broken people start to crack and for the first time, instead of turning to one another, they begin to drift apart. I think it's his best book, in all of it's rawness. Gatsby is a well constructed masterpiece, but this is the reality that came out of the other side.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Zanna

    2.5 stars Of course, it doesn't matter what the author really meant to say. Reading Richard Godden's introduction though, it was quite comforting to me to remember that it doesn't matter what scholars think the text means, or author meant, either. Or the press. "A tragedy backlit by beauty" is the highlighted quote. What tragedy? There is a 'tragedy' here, if that word, so empty of agency, so forgiving and concealing, can be used for a rape. But I don't think that's what's meant; they mean poor 2.5 stars Of course, it doesn't matter what the author really meant to say. Reading Richard Godden's introduction though, it was quite comforting to me to remember that it doesn't matter what scholars think the text means, or author meant, either. Or the press. "A tragedy backlit by beauty" is the highlighted quote. What tragedy? There is a 'tragedy' here, if that word, so empty of agency, so forgiving and concealing, can be used for a rape. But I don't think that's what's meant; they mean poor Dick, emptied of his potency. For Godden he's the old economic order, and his demise has a racialised edge. Nicole, the abuse survivor, gets out, though uncertainly, like a butterfly, into the new economic age. The Great Depression is subtly foreshadowed, gives a mood to the last chapters But sorry, I don't see tragedy, I don't feel for Dick, though maybe the branded, consumer-driven new order is a scourge and I should join Fitzgerald (in whom Godden sees Marxism and class loyalty warring) in mourning the old way of being wealthy in wasting time gloriously... Oh demon drink! Oh thoughtless, unthinking Woman! Oh heartless, greedy, craven world! No, I won't have it. I'm with Augustine, the cook, waving the kitchen knife, dismissed for helping herself to Chablis, calling Dick on his alcoholism, fearless of police, demanding her wages, calling up to Nicole 'Au revoir Madame! Bonne chance!' Fitzgerald is ambivalent, but I seize the half-felt words. Bonne chance, Nicole, get out from under. Even if he cannot give her a mind, I am with her. There is something too, almost, when Dick goes to 'cure' a young man of homosexuality - Fitzgerald appreciates at least, that it can't be done. This was an unwitting re-read: many years ago I must have taken this out of the library and read it without noticing. I like to think these days I am more awake, no longer lullayed by the susurrous lyres and viols of Fitzgerald's sentences or distracted by the plangent grief for Dick. This time a part of me answers back, sympathising with the wrong people, with Baby Warren's will, her singleness; her ugly power-wielding, despised by Dick, rationalised by the desiccating, sexist gaze of the omnipotent author, changes in my heart. You did not see her! You made her for your sport. But I read Fitzgerald sympathetically not only for his seeming helplessness and honesty, for sending out a vital voice from the depths of affluenza, but also for the sweetness of that voice. And he does not aestheticise wealth I think, but feeling, for the sake of communication. Do readers envy his suffering rich? I think not. But we feel for them. There is something here, some kind of struggle, a half-lucid dream to interpret. So 'backlit' by beauty also sounds wrong to me. There is the light of beauty here, but lighting the 'tragedy' is some other illumination, like the unwholesome glow of the movies with their unreal 'faces of girl-children'. The experimental abstraction, the theatrical entry of Dick into the movie studio, reflects the dream-darkness of the mind probed by the rising field of psychiatry and psychoanalysis, Dick's field. White-supremacist capitalist patriarchy projected itself into that darkness - do I detect a part of Fitzgerald trying to... at least... let it be dark?

  26. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Clausen

    "Tender is the Night" is an interesting dinner guest that arrives half-drunk seems amusing but shallow, but then, as the night wears on, reveals itself as something deep, thoughtful, and yes, even tender. It's the story of one couple -- Dick and Nicole Diver; a charismatic American family living in France. They are charming, they are exceptional, they are fun, and of course, they are also flawed...and their tale is tragic. In short, this book is a classic and a joy to read. I'm always cautious "Tender is the Night" is an interesting dinner guest that arrives half-drunk seems amusing but shallow, but then, as the night wears on, reveals itself as something deep, thoughtful, and yes, even tender. It's the story of one couple -- Dick and Nicole Diver; a charismatic American family living in France. They are charming, they are exceptional, they are fun, and of course, they are also flawed...and their tale is tragic. In short, this book is a classic and a joy to read. I'm always cautious about commenting on male writers writing female characters, especially those with mental disorders. But Nicole seems sympathetically and miraculously well-developed. Even though she is a kind of plague to the charismatic Dick Diver (I wonder what Freud would say about this character name), she also is a charming delight -- which makes Dick's situation all the more plausible and relatable. As the novel moves into its mature parts, we see that Dick himself is a kind of blight on Nicole. As Nicole gets better mentally and emotionally, Dick goes through a kind of dissipation. The very period-ness of the book, post-WWI Europe, the Jazz age, the backdrop of a rising and confident America, also makes the book interesting. In the edition I read, there are numbered references you can look up in the back that explain all the period details. The book is very much a work of its time, and thus, it's also a fascinating window into that part of history. One of the things that stands out the most is spectacular wealth that the Divers enjoy in their pre-Great Depression era lives. This is a subject I think that should resonate with modern America readers! The book was serialized (either in a newspaper or magazine, I forget), so the chapters are short, punchy, and something interesting happens in all of them. Since I read much of this on the bus to work, this structure of the book really worked for me. At first, as I read the book, I took it as just another well-written period piece. But the more involved I became with the Dick and Nicole, the more I began to see this book not just as a good work of fiction, but as a great one. It's the tale of a complicated time and place where good things can easily go sour. I would recommend this book to all lovers of great fiction! And, for this reason, I'm placing it on my all-time greats bookshelf.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Perry

    "The grass, the thicket, and the fruit-tree wild...." "Ode to a Nightingale," Keats Dick Diver, a psychiatrist and writer in his late 30s with loads of potential, travels the fashionable places in France and Italy with his wife Nicole and a group of several other expat Americans. The novel's title was taken from a line in Keats' "Ode to a Nightingale," which reflects on the fleetingness of pleasure and the certainty of death. The partly autobiographical novel was Fitzgerald's favorite and "The grass, the thicket, and the fruit-tree wild...." "Ode to a Nightingale," Keats Dick Diver, a psychiatrist and writer in his late 30s with loads of potential, travels the fashionable places in France and Italy with his wife Nicole and a group of several other expat Americans. The novel's title was taken from a line in Keats' "Ode to a Nightingale," which reflects on the fleetingness of pleasure and the certainty of death. The partly autobiographical novel was Fitzgerald's favorite and revolves around Diver's descent into full-blown alcoholism and a complete moral collapse after developing Florence Nightingale syndrome for, and marrying Nicole, his lovely and emotionally unbalanced patient. He further loses his way after an 18-year-old actress develops a crush on Dick. He falls for the enticement of youth and beauty, which is partly to blame for his wife beginning an affair with a young soldier. After the young actress jilts him and he's cuckolded by his wife, he begins drinking more heavily which only exacerbates his problems and further dooms his marriage and career. Sorry, but I found this too much of a diver downer, a cautionary tale, for me to have enjoyed it or to give it a sincere recommendation.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Tim

    It took Fitzgerald so long to write this novel that its inevitably flawed. It seems to me he began with a view to distancing himself from himself and Dick Diver was conceived as a fictional character modelled on someone Fitzgerald knew. However as the novel progresses Diver becomes more and more Fitzgerald himself and the novel becomes ever more autobiographical. This is what ultimately gives it its beautiful heartbreaking quality its the fictionalised story of Fitzgeralds marriage to Zelda. It took Fitzgerald so long to write this novel that it’s inevitably flawed. It seems to me he began with a view to distancing himself from himself and Dick Diver was conceived as a fictional character modelled on someone Fitzgerald knew. However as the novel progresses Diver becomes more and more Fitzgerald himself and the novel becomes ever more autobiographical. This is what ultimately gives it its beautiful heartbreaking quality – it’s the fictionalised story of Fitzgerald’s marriage to Zelda. Though Gatsby is undoubtedly a much better novel in terms of construction and economy Tender has an emotional power Gatsby lacks. It’s a novel that captures poignantly the diminishing returns of youthful optimism and vitality, of young love, and as such one of the most beautifully sad novels I have ever read. One’s heart goes out to poor Dick Diver.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Pooja

    Tender is the night is the sad story of Nicole and Dick Diver's fall of marriage and in the end career after being such an ideal example of a wealthy and happy couple in front of the world. Their richness reminded me of Fitzgerald's other works like The Great Gatsby and The beautiful and Damned. I bought this book by mistaking it to The other side of Paradise by him, because I thought Charlie from Perks of Being Wallflower had this book in his read-list. I enjoyed reading this Jazz Era book and Tender is the night is the sad story of Nicole and Dick Diver's fall of marriage and in the end career after being such an ideal example of a wealthy and happy couple in front of the world. Their richness reminded me of Fitzgerald's other works like The Great Gatsby and The beautiful and Damned. I bought this book by mistaking it to The other side of Paradise by him, because I thought Charlie from Perks of Being Wallflower had this book in his read-list. I enjoyed reading this Jazz Era book and finding similarities between the characters and the writer's life, gave a chilling and thrilling kind of experience.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    "Oh no, this wealthy hot barely legal teen needs me to take care of her body and her mounds of money forever because she's mentally unstable! What shall I do? Wait - oh man, here comes another hot barely legal teen! Am I going to have to have sex with her too?!" COOL STORY, F SCOTT FITZGERALD.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.