I’ve just discovered Richard Yates (thanks to the recently released movie) and can’t believe I haven’t heard of this brilliant writer before. So thank you Hollywood!!! The novel is about middle class America in the 1950’s and focuses in on Frank and April Wheeler a young couple trying to work out what direction they want their lives to take. Not content with a mind-numbing, mediocre existence in the suburbs they hatch a plan to escape to Europe to fulfil their dreams. But the couple are headed for a free fall when it becomes clear that running away will not solve their problems. I loved this book so much I am now onto my third book of his in a row. Yate’s writing is effortless and his characters are so real they could be living next door (or even in your own house!). I can’t recommend this book enough in fact people I going to get sick of me raving on about it!

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I thought this book was very well written and it was easy to relate to but I came away feeling a bit depressed. This is not a very uplifting novel!
This book is an intense look at the life of a married couple during the late 1950s America. It examines their frustrated endeavours to rise above what they perceive as the mediocrity of their suburban existence, their moral dilemmas and the discontent they both feel in their assigned roles as breadwinner and housewife. I found it strangely disturbing.

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