I finished our bookclub book yesterday evening. I probably shouldn't talk about it much because we're not meeting until next week. So I won't go into great detail, but I will say THIS BOOK WAS REALLY GOOD! I just love McEwan's writing style. He's very detail-oriented, like moi, but not in a nitpicky or showoffy way, unlike moi. Maybe "nuanced" would be a better word. Perhaps I'd even use the word "luminous" if I wasn't boycotting it because of overuse in book reviews.

There were a couple of plot twists that I thought were just the teensiest bit contrived (okay, they were straight out of Gilbert & Sullivan), but when I got to the end I sort of changed my mind. I'm still puzzling it over. And even if this aspect of the plot borders on high melodrama or god forbid farce, it does not detract in any way from the beauty and clarity of his prose.

And the ending packs such a punch. If I just describe the very basic setting I don't think I'll spoil anything. After a 50-year gap in the plot, a 77-year-old woman returns to her childhood home for a family reunion. And you are right there. At least while I was reading, I felt like I understood what it was to be 77 years old. It was one of those "great cycle of life" or "wheel in the sky" moments. I made the mistake of reading the ending at my son's martial arts class. Any other setting and I'd have been bawling. But at To-Shin Do, well, I had to keep a stiff upper lip.


  • Goes on my list to read after she goes to college. THx for the peak w/out giving away the plot! Sounds very interesting.

    posted by Anonymous SilverMoon on 11:47 AM  

  • I am in a book club too. I may just choose this book next time since you liked it so well. We just finished reading "Wicked:The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West". It was what you should read if you want something very different!

    I like your blog:-)

    posted by Blogger Heather on 9:42 PM  

  • I waited until finishing the book (last night!) to read this post. I'm eager to hear the discussion tonight. I loved the book, too, even though it had a WWII context. I don't like war books as a rule.

    posted by Blogger doulicia on 9:24 AM