Don't be put off if you find `Revolutionary Road' somewhat tedious at first. A brilliant exploration of the underlying feelings, dissatisfaction, and innuendo that can cause a relationship to develop, flounder, and finally fall apart, it's not an uplifting story, nor are any of the characters particularly appealing. For large parts of the book I really couldn't care what became of any of them. By the end, though, I was drawn into their lives to the point where, whilst still not liking them, I did at least feel some sympathy for them.
I can't even say that I liked the book - it's hardly an entertaining read, there's no feel-good factor and some may find it rather depressing - but I've given it 5 stars because, despite everything, it's an exceptional novel. You have to stop and think about the technique in order to appreciate just how perceptive and penetrating Richard Yates is. His attention to everyday detail is outstanding. The observations are so astute and often so subtle that it would be easy to read over them at a superfluous level and not appreciate their contribution to the story.
If you're not interested in the minutiae of relationships or are after an enjoyable holiday or bedtime read this is not for you. But it's a classic of its kind, a novel every serious reader should tackle at some time or other.