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adele geras

I'm a big McEwan fan, give him a try. Enduring Love is good. So is Atonement. So are lots of others...Black Dogs is the one favoured by my other half. Start with the later McEwan and work backwards, my advice would be. The Innocent is terrific but has a grisly bit in the middle. On Chesil Beach is good too.


Haven't read it, enjoyed the film, but I, too, was at a school fair yesterday (in North London) and saw several copies for sale. Maybe people bought it, then saw the film, and decided they'd 'done' this particular McEwan? I'm not into keeping scruffy paperbacks recently, either - I like to release them back into the wild. I found 'Chesil Beach' depressing, but enjoyed 'Saturday' a lot btw.


I found Atonement tough at the start but then I enjoyed it. I was less excited with On Chesil Beach but recently listened to Saturday on audio and found it very catching.


I'm a McEwan fan too. The first one I read was Enduring Love and I was hooked! Atonement is very good and I enjoyed On Chesil Beach too, but have read criticism of it and Saturday, which I thought was great!


Yes, read Atonement, I loved it. The first Ian McEwan I read was First Love, Last Rites, his short story collection, raw, dark and brilliant.!

Claire (Paperback Reader)

Cornflower, the only McEwan I have read is Atonement so I am unable to say yet whether I am a fan. I didn't love Atonement but I did enjoy it; some parts more than others. I found that the second half dragged a little although picked up in the last 50 pages or so. I liked its commentary on writing and the first half was impeccably written. I was not a huge fan of the characters but they redeemed themselves in my opinion in the last section. I enjoyed McEwan's style and would definitely read more of his work, although despite it being two years since I read Atonement I don't feel the urge yet.


I love Ian McEwan. I picked up Enduring Love in a bookshop, being a professional book seller I am trained to resist impulse buys (especially of new books at full price!), but by the time I had read the first chapter I was on my way to the till. It is an excellent place to start with McEwen.

I also loved Atonement and On Chesil Beach and Saturday. The Innocent, The Cement Garden and A Child in Time are also good but are all very disturbing, though in different ways. A Child in Time is about parents coming to terms with having a child abducted for example, and because McEwen is very, very good, it is very, very upsetting.

I suspect Atonement is not a 'keeper' as you put it because so many people bought it because of the film and its stars when such a long literary novel might not have been their normal thing.

You're missing a lot - do try Enduring Love!


I thought Atonement was over-rated, but I read Saturday in one gulp on a rainy Saturday two years ago. On Chesil Beach was distressing (I kept wanting to take each character aside and have a word), but very fine writing.


I enjoyed On Chesil Beach, whcih was the first McEwan book I read. I was disappointed by Enduring Love and hated Saturday, so have decided McEwan's not for me.

You'll have to try him for yourself Karen- it will be interesting to see if you love him or loathe him.


I totally loved Atonement, and have loved most McEwan I have read though was not keen on Amsterdam or Black Dogs. I loved On Chesil Beach and Enduring Love. Do give him a whirl.


Do give him a try. I don't think he'll disappoint.


I admire McEwan, depending on the book I have liked him too. Atonement is, in my opinion, his best book.

Simon S

I love McEwan, I do think he is a bit of a marmite author though. I think Atonement is one of his best but I also loved On Chesil Beach, I think at the moment they are my top two of his.


I'm surprised that you haven't realised that books make a house so untidy. You should buy them, read them and then get rid of them just like any other rubbish ;-)
When a book is made into a film it does seem to sell in high quantities, often to people who agree with my statement above.


Like others have mentioned I suspect that when the film came out bookshops were flooded with copies of the book and there is simply a surplus. I haven't read many of his novels, but what I've read I've liked--and Atonement is my favorite. I ordered it from Amazon in the UK when it first came out--and then foolishly loaned it to someone and never got it back. I'll never do that again! :) (At least not with a favorite). I hope you picked up one of those copies.


I like Ian McKewan. Attonement is my fave but it is closely followed by .... can't remember the name but it is about a Dr in London. I am surprised to hear that you have not read any of his work as yet. Do give hime a try. I find his work very thought provoking.


Saturday - the title of the book I forgot. Excellent and highly recommended and as I said very thought provoking regarding the outcome.It was a very unexpected ending for me. I still think about it and it is some years since I read this book.


I just read a negative review on Atonement today and a lot of the commenters agreed. And then here most commenters are positive. Such difference of opinion.

I, too, absolutely loved Atonement. I also loved On Chesil Beach. And Amsterdam I don't feel so strongly about, but admit it was very well-written still. I'm definitely a McEwan fan and intend to read through all his books.

Lizzy Siddal

When McEwan is good, he's very, very good (Atonement, Enduring Love, The Innocent), but when he is bad, he is horrid (Saturday, On Chesil Beach).

A full description of my troubled relationship with McEwan at:


I really liked Atonement. I also saw the film, which I liked, but not as much as the book. I actually read this first for a book group, and we had a very good discussion. There's a very important detail that not everyone caught the first time through. The themes also lend themselves to discussion.


I am in full agreement with Lizzy Siddal it seems! I loved Atonement and Enduring Love and found On Chesil Beach and Saturday mediocre. And I will now be rather tentative about buying his next one as the two I thought mediocre were his last two :-(


Another McEwan fan here! I remember when I was reading Saturday, I had to go out for the evening and I literally walked to the car with my nose still in the book, let someone else drive, and read through most of the first course because I was in the middle of a scene that was literally unputdownable. I thought Saturday was a fascinating, compelling book. Atonement is another one that makes you think while drawing you into its world. I adored On Chesil Beach, though I know it's not his most popular. For me it was just so agonisingly, heart-wrenchingly true. I started Enduring Love earlier this year but haven't finished it - I don't think I was quite in the right mood, but also it felt a bit more like McEwan doing his cryptic moral crossword (which actually he does brilliantly in all his books) without enough depth of characterisation and setting. I could be wrong and when I am feeling less depressed I will try it again.

I haven't read Amsterdam but I've heard very good things about it.

Atonement (even before the film came out) was a book that people who don't read books seemed to be talking about for some reason. So I'd say that's why it has such a high appearance rate on the second-hand stalls.


Yes, I think that's right. He is an exceptionally accomplished author, even when the books don't quite hit the right note.


The line that absolutely had me in tears in On Chesil Beach was when Florence realises that she literally has no words - she does not know any words that she can use to talk about what is happening. So desperately sad.

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