Later this year, Richard Yates’ Revolutionary Road will join scores of other books judged not only on its own merit but on how well its leading couple, Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet, pull off the cinematic version of this contemporary classic. I picked up a copy of the book based on the recommendations two colleagues made at the recent ALA conference in Anaheim. Wait, these weren’t just recommendations. While going around the dinner table stating our “favorite book of all time” (we all know this question is a hefty one!) two said, “Revolutionary Road.”
Wow. I had to read it.
For those who are unfamiliar with the book, it is a story of suburban disillusionment. Frank and April Wheeler are living the 1950’s American Dream just outside New York City. But as dreams give way to reality, the cookie-cutter couple falls from grace. With genuine dialogue and heartbreaking drama, I could see Leo as Frank and Kate as April. I could see their beautiful, picture-perfect big-screen life topple. I suppose that’s what happens when you know a movie is coming.
Kurt Vonnegut hailed Revolutionary Road as “The Great Gatsby of my time….One of the best books by a member of my generation.” With all the hype, ALA dinner conversation included, I’m sure you’re wondering if I agree. I’m busy wondering: Can the Titanic duo do it again?
Revolutionary Road hits theaters in December. A movie-tie in edition will be available November 25.