DiCaprio and Kate Winslet in Oscar-nominated movie Revolutionary Road, does it ring a bell?
It all comes from a fascinating book by Richard Yates. I can’t say which one I experienced first (the book, probably), but I remember very well seeing the book in one of London’s Waterstones bookstore. Once again, I had no choice but to come back home with a beautiful edition!
Clothbound with a design influenced by typography, this hardback is a Vintage Modern Classics limited edition for Waterstones. This makes it a bit (quite) difficult to find it today, as it was published in 2010.
Ian McEwan’s Atonement and Stephan Faulks’ Birdsong (recommend readings as well) are other examples of titles published as part of this Waterstones special edition*.
Now, I’m not supposed to talk about the story – as I’m no book critic after all – what I’ll only say is that the book acted as a kind of electroshock to me. Although a bit sad (not to say depressing), it awakes you from your daily routine and inertia. It reminds you all the social constraints and conventions from which we strive to set free.
Suburban life in the 50s can sound way too familiar sometimes! This is why I like Richard Yates’ novels and short stories.
You can find more of Yates’ books in the Vintage Classics collection (these are paperbacks). The nice madmen-like covers will make you forget you can’t have it in the Waterstone special edition!
Do you own a Vintage x Waterstone exclusive edition? Are there more books than the one mentioned? Do let us know by leaving a comment!
And if you’re wondering about the delicate and flowery notebook that you’ve spotted in the pictures of this article: it’s a Liberty notebook, from their own range of stationery.
* Other titles from the Waterstones special edition include: Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie, Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami, Restoration by Rose Tremain, Slaughterhouse 5 by Kurt Vonnegut, Suite Française by Irène Némirovsky, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon, The Time Traveller’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger and Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time.
If you have more info on titles from this edition, leave us a comment! Thanks also to book designer Anna Green for the kind help with this article.