Customer Review

5.0 out of 5 stars Queasily compelling, 3 Jun 2014
This review is from: The Cement Garden (Paperback)
Re-reading The Cement Garden after several years, one is struck by two things. Firstly, what a darkly compelling little novel it is, with its portrayal of a nightmare situation as something almost ordinary in nature. Secondly, what a tightly constructed piece of storytelling it is - way better than anything McEwan has done since.

The book is practically perfect in its construction, with a bleak, queasy world unfolding before our eyes, as told through the teenage Jack. In so many ways it is like an updated Lord of The Flies, with its shocking breakdown in social order, and acceptance of strange behaviour as the norm. In this respect, McEwan pretty much sets out the blueprint for other "shocker" novels like this that followed, such as Iain Banks' debut The Wasp Factory.

This is superior to that in many ways - the lean nature of the storytelling, the poetic language used to sketch out an ever darkening and decaying world in which the characters wander; the gentle power of the conclusion. With later books, McEwan always seems to run out of ideas right at the end - but here the mood is sustained right to the very end. As other reviewers have commented - a modern masterpiece. Haunting, horrible, brilliant.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

Be the first person to comment on this review.

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines ">here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
 


Review Details

Item

4.0 out of 5 stars (65 customer reviews)
5 star:
 (27)
4 star:
 (19)
3 star:
 (11)
2 star:
 (5)
1 star:
 (3)
 
 
 
7.99 5.59
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Reviewer


Location: Ashtead UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 1,012