I just finished On Chesil Beach and it quickly moved into my top two books by Ian McEwan, the other being Atonement. McEwan efficiently provides the back stories of his two young protagonists and movingly depicts a wedding night decision that changes the course of their lives. A quick read full of memorable scenes of shared love, ambition and sexual insecurities, McEwan portrays a relationship that symbolizes the cultural divide of the 1960's, and captures the nostalgia and regret that often haunt us in our own lives.
This was my first time I read anything by Ian McEwan, but I am extremely impressed. At times the book can be hard to follow, it is creatively written. The characters are shown with all of their own flaws. At the end, I sat thinking about how one moment can change your whole life. Great book.
Like all his books, this is a carefully and eloquently written novel. The pace moves briskly, perhaps because of its length. McEwan expertly describes the insecurities of the two main characters. All of his books (including this one) are wonderful.
I read this short book in about 2 hours. I have never cared for his books before, but I enjoyed his writing style in this one and found it very easy to follow. It is a sad story but I would still recommend it, especially for someone in between *heavy* books for a quick, satisfying read.
I really don't know what all the fuss is about. I thought the premise of this book was weird and far-fetched. I finished it but I cannot say that I enjoyed it all that much. I have another book on my shelf by this author that I have not read yet, and I am now kind of reluctant to read it. Hopefully it will be better.
McEwan is a master storyteller. "On Chesil Beach" is a beautifully written story of a newly married couple circa early 60s and failed expectations and actions.
While the story itself is well written, the plot is slightly trite and not very complex.
Certainly thought provoking but not enough for the current times.
The reader for all their gnashing of teeth for the characters and hoping that things will turn out better in a moment, just make this story frustrating. Failed loves of not so epic proportions tend to fail.
This little book left me introspective and sad. Told in a unique McEwan style, the book emphasizes that momentary decisions have lifelong consequences (similar in someways to Atonement). It's also a period piece of a time when sexuality and family secrets were kept tightly under wraps.
I just could NOT finish this one. I love everything I've read by him, but I didn't like this one at all. To top it all off, it's a little hardback, so I feel ripped off too...full price for an itty, bitty book.
This is a wonderfully written book. The details make a reader feel as if he is in the room with the couple on their wedding night. The emotions are raw and palpable. As with Atonement, this is also a book of "the road not taken," and how momentary decisions may alter the course of our lives.