Since finishing my review of Revolutionary Road yesterday, I've had some time to do some thinking, and of course some time to explore other reviews of the book (I've learned not to do this while I'm reading a novel or I will become distracted and sometimes find it affects my enjoyment of a book.
For the most part, I don't filter my reading. I read virtually every genre (though I prefer not to read sci-fi or books that are driven by a political agenda -- you'll see a few from me, but not a lot). However, I do tend, as I believe we all do, to read through the lens of my personal experiences with life and different situations.
So, for example, when I'm reading Revolutionary Road, I'm not looking for a hidden agenda. I'm not looking for a deep message and meaning that will alter my life as I know it. In this case, because the book is so character-driven, I allowed myself to connect to the characters, but I also went a step further: I allowed myself to, in theory, learn from the mistakes that they had made. That, I suppose, is my "lens." My lens said "possibility" and from reading reviews, others wore the lens of "futility."
I find this interesting. At this point I can't say what Yates' intentions were, but I know what I took away from the experience of reading this book. My lens makes it no less incredible, though I wonder if the opposing lens will reveal such a beautiful book.