Study Guide

Tender is the Night Book One, Chapter Three

By F. Scott Fitzgerald

Book One, Chapter Three

  • It’s about 2pm and Rosemary and her mother are having lunch, when Rosemary says she "fell in love on the beach," with a really good looking, red-headed, married man.
  • We learn that her mom, Elsie Speers, is her best friend, and was married and widowed twice, once to a "cavalry officer" and once to "an army doctor." She wants Rosemary to learn to be less dependent on her.
  • Rosemary tells her about how she liked the Dick Diver set, but not the McKisco set, and how they recognized her now that she’s the star of the movie Daddy’s Girl.
  • Elsie tells Rosemary she needs to go see a guy named Earl Brady, and that she has to go by herself.
  • They both are drained so they head for the room, and Rosemary says she doesn’t want to stay long. She says that she doesn’t really love Dick Diver and she only loves her mom.
  • Later, Rosemary takes a little train ride and thinks the train is a natural part of the French landscape, not like the trains in America.
  • A little later, she comes out of a little store and sees Mrs. Diver carrying couch cushions to a car with a chauffeur. Mrs. Diver has "thick, dark, gold hair like a chow’s."
  • While waiting in a café for the train back, she thinks French life isn’t fresh and that it doesn’t appeal to her.
  • The next day, too sunburned for the beach, Rosemary goes with Elsie for a driving day tour of the area. That night when she’s falling asleep, she dreams about hanging out with the Divers and their set, and about not hanging out with the McKiscos and theirs.