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Kafka meets The Thick Of It in a bitingly funny new political satire from Ian McEwan
That morning, Jim Sams, clever but by no means profound, woke from uneasy dreams to find himself transformed into a gigantic creature.
Jim Sams has undergone a metamorphosis. In his previous life he was ignored or loathed, but in his new incarnation he is the most powerful man in Britain – and it is his mission to carry out the will of the people. Nothing must get in his way: not the opposition, nor the dissenters within his own party. Not even the rules of parliamentary democracy.
With trademark intelligence, insight and scabrous humour, Ian McEwan pays tribute to Franz Kafka’s most famous work to engage with a world turned on its head.
**THE NUMBER ONE BESTSELLER**
Britain has lost the Falklands war, Margaret Thatcher battles Tony Benn for power and Alan Turing achieves a breakthrough in artificial intelligence. In a world not quite like this one, two lovers will be tested beyond their understanding.
Machines Like Me occurs in an alternative 1980s London. Charlie, drifting through life and dodging full-time employment, is in love with Miranda, a bright student who lives with a terrible secret. When Charlie comes into money, he buys Adam, one of the first batch of synthetic humans. With Miranda’s assistance, he co-designs Adam’s personality. This near-perfect human is beautiful, strong and clever – a love triangle soon forms. These three beings will confront a profound moral dilemma. Ian McEwan’s subversive and entertaining new novel poses fundamental questions: what makes us human? Our outward deeds or our inner lives? Could a machine understand the human heart? This provocative and thrilling tale warns of the power to invent things beyond our control.
‘This is new and exciting ground for McEwan, one of Britain's most consistently brilliant writers.’ Esquire
The Sunday Times Number One Bestseller
Trudy has betrayed her husband, John. She's still in the marital home – a dilapidated, priceless London townhouse – but not with John. Instead, she's with his brother, the profoundly banal Claude, and the two of them have a plan. But there is a witness to their plot: the inquisitive, nine-month-old resident of Trudy's womb.
A brilliant, emotionally-wrenching novel from the bestselling author of Atonement, now a major film starring Emma Thompson and Stanley Tucci
Fiona Maye, a leading High Court judge, renowned for her fierce intelligence and sensitivity is called on to try an urgent case. For religious reasons, a seventeen-year-old boy is refusing the medical treatment that could save his life. Time is running out.
She visits the boy in hospital – an encounter which stirs long-buried feelings in her and powerful new emotions in the boy. But it is Fiona who must ultimately decide whether he lives or dies and her judgement will have momentous consequences for them both.
‘Compulsively readable’ The Times
‘A powerful, humane novel’ Evening Standard
On the hottest day of the summer of 1935, thirteen-year-old Briony Tallis sees her sister Cecilia strip off her clothes and plunge into the fountain in the garden of their country house. Watching her too is Robbie Turner who, like Cecilia, has recently come down from Cambridge. By the end of that day, the lives of all three will have been changed for ever, as Briony commits a crime for which she will spend the rest of her life trying to atone.
**ONE OF THE GUARDIAN'S 100 BEST BOOKS OF THE 21st CENTURY**
***WINNER OF THE BOOKER PRIZE***
Two old friends – Cline Linley and Vernon Halliday – meet at the funeral of gorgeous, witty Molly Lane. Both men had been Molly’s lovers years before their dazzling success; Clive is Britain’s most eminent modern composer and Vernon is the editor of the respected broadsheet, The Judge. In the weeks that follow, Clive and Vernon’s lives become bound together in ways neither could have imagined. Two dubious moral decisions and a pact made in extremis lead them both to the heart of Amsterdam.
‘This is a history of intellectual courage, hard work, occasional inspiration and every conceivable form of human failing. It is also an extended invitation to wonder, to pleasure’
How far have we come in our understanding of the world around us? In this eye-opening collection, Ian McEwan looks back at the history of scientific discovery from Darwin to Dawkins as well as exploring, with brilliant originality, what a future with AI and climate change could hold for us.
Selected from Solar, Enduring Love, Machines Like Me
VINTAGE MINIS: GREAT MINDS. BIG IDEAS. LITTLE BOOKS.
A series of short books by the world’s greatest writers on the experiences that make us human
Also in the Vintage Minis 'Great Ideas' series:
Religion by Karen Armstrong
Art by Simon Schama
‘Dazzling... Profound and urgent’ Observer
‘A book of great maturity, beautifully alive to the fragility of happiness and all forms of violence... Everyone should read Saturday’ Financial Times
Saturday, February 15, 2003.
Henry Perowne, a successful neurosurgeon, stands at his bedroom window before dawn and watches a plane – ablaze with fire like a meteor – arcing across the London sky. Over the course of the following day, unease gathers about Perowne, as he moves amongst hundreds of thousands of anti-war protestors in the post-9/11 streets.
A minor car accident brings him into confrontation with Baxter, a fidgety, aggressive man, who to Perowne’s professional eye appears to be profoundly unwell. But it is not until Baxter makes a sudden appearance at the Perowne family home that Henry’s earlier fears seem about to be realised...
Black Dogs is a dark and brooding masterpiece from Booker-prize winning Sunday Times bestselling author Ian McEwan.
In 1946, June and Bernard set off on their honeymoon. Fired by their ideals and passion for one another, they had planned an idyllic holiday, but in France they witness an event that alters the course of their lives entirely. Forty years on, their son-in-law is trying to uncover the cause of their estrangement and is led back to this moment on honeymoon and an experience of such darkness it was to wrench the couple apart.
‘Powerful... Unforgettable’ Sunday Telegraph
‘Thoughtful and compassionate’ London Review of Books