Richard Yates (Vintage Classics)

Richard Yates is considered one of the great ‘lost’ US writers of his generation, but a film adaptation of his first novel Revolutionary Road, starring Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio, is sure to rekindle interest in 
his words.

So, it’s natural that his publisher should cash in on this celluloid event (Kate and Leo’s first flick together since Titanic) by re-releasing the book.

First published in 1961, it painstakingly examines the growing disillusionment of suburban couple Frank and April Wheeler.

Bored by the humdrum of daily life the bright, young couple, and parents of two children, decide their emotional and cultural salvation lies in relocating to Europe.

As they make plans to leave, their lives slowly unravel.

There are elements of JD Salinger’s Catcher In The Rye as Yates lays bare the hollowness of the ‘American Dream’ but the true power of his writing lies in his ability to capture his characters’ inner worlds 
of frustration and self-delusion.

This reviewer would not go as far as to hail Revolutionary Road “a masterpiece” — as Tennessee Williams once did — but can certainly see why Kurt Vonnegut described it as “The Great Gatsby of my time”. ALISON GRINTER