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Thanks to the advice from the the staff at Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights, I brought Tender is the Night, as a follow up from reading The Great Gatsby.

Another beautifully written book by F. Scott Fitzgerald, set in 1920s, in the French Rivera. Beginning much like a romantic, love story, with stunning settings, described so beautifully by Fitzgerald, it could make any bookworm fall in love.

“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”

However this theme of romance is soon clouded by tragedy. As more is revealed the reader is sucked in, waiting to see how the characters will deal with the situations and what the sub sequential outcomes will be.

This novel is filled with main characters, who are interesting and unique. Fitzgerald creates great depth for each character, building it up slowly throughout the novel.

Broken up into three books, the first book could be seen as set in the present whilst book two goes back in time to add more background to the characters. Book two then comes back up to date with the present and carries on the narrative from where it left off in book one. The jump back in time, at the beginning of book two, not only adds depth to Fitzgerald’s characters but also creates a small cliff-hanger, meaning as a reader you are hooked to the book, waiting for the outcomes of situations previously revealed.

The third book then completes the narrative, with a faster sequence of events that led up to the ending. The events throughout keep you gripped, wanting to know what happens to each of the characters. Although the ending could be described as a little abrupt, it does, however, ensure that the reader is not left wondering about the future of all the characters, although some are left early on, letting the reader imagine their future for themselves.

Although in places this novel is hard to read because of the advanced vocabulary and archaic references, the plot and characters are all very well thought out, making a great read.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

Amazon (UK)

Amazon US

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