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Customer reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
274
3.5 out of 5 stars
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on 17 February 2015
I am not usually a fan of Ian McEwan and just can't get on with his writing style at all. However, this book was excellent and a great read. I was never completely sure of how it was going to turn out, or whether the main characters fears were real or imagined. I also had a real sense of forboding throughout the book and it was at times really creepy. What made it an even more fascinating read for me (I am a scientist at heart) is that it appears to have been based on a true medical case.
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on 4 January 2014
Extremely well written. Simple but effective and even poetic use of language. Extremely astutely observed psychology of narrator. Packed with interesting scientific asides. And there's even some humour (especially in the scene where the narrator encounters the ex-hippies/coke dealers), so can't be faulted lack of this essential ingredient. Good use of suspense in general and in particular puzzlement over the actual mental state of the narrator. I only became bored with the the very slow pace of the action a couple of times, and not for more than a few pages. If you like impeccable use of the English language and masterly storytelling (despite the slow pace), you might just love this book.
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on 4 February 2016
Well, it was certainly an enduring task getting through this book.
It wasn't all bad. When things actually happened in the story, it was interesting and engaging. The opening was brilliant as well. However, the inane ramblings of the narrator and the ridiculous and tiresome "love" letters from Jed, were painful and I end in up skim reading most of them.
I have not been put off from reading McEwan, but I can't recommend this book. It was truly a disappointment as it had been raved about by so many people I know.
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on 14 December 2010
This book is incredibly well written, by a very talented author. It covers brilliant themes and issues such as religion and love. The book is narrated in a very unusual way, using all 3 tenses to there advantage. Mcewan builds tension incredibly well throughout the book and once you start reading it is very hard to stop! The basic storyline is about a man who develops and obsession for the narrator of the story (Joe) which ends up getting out of hand. It all started with a very unfortunate balloon accident, which in itself makes the book even more unique as it is an unusual accident to happen.

The downside to the book is that the small details are dragged out much more than the main events. For example, when describing something that happens in 2 minutes, it takes over 2 pages. However when the main event occurs which lasts a good deal longer the pace is much faster and the main bits are almost rushed over. Therefore the smaller, less important bits that are dragged out do get a bit tedious towards the end of the book. However, its these less important bits that build the tension in the book, so if they weren't there the book would probably be not as tense and engrossive as it is.

Overall it is a brilliant book and well worth a read.
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on 26 December 2013
McEwan never fails to impress as a storyteller. His genius with language can only be admired. Here's another story with a difference, one that makes the reader gasp, think, ponder and wallow in his gift. I loved 'Saturdays' so much that I decided to give a few of his others a go. Glad I did. I won't write a precise of the story here, I don't get why people try to do that at all. Like reviewers need premature amateur explanations? No, we don't.
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on 12 March 2013
I read this book on an 8 hour flight, only stopping to eat, go to the loo and talk to my friend (occasionally!) it's the kind of book that makes you quite unsociable! It's so well written, really detailed and descriptive - so you feel like you're actually there and that you know the characters well. I couldn't have predicted what happened in the book, it was a real page turner and kept me guessing. I enjoyed the film too but definitely recommend reading the book first.
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on 23 May 2015
Engaging from its brilliant start and fascinating throughout. My interest waned in the latter part as the narrative wandered and lost pace. Love his incredibly descriptive style. Would recommend.
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on 7 May 2016
Amazing book. Couldn't put it down and read it in a day. Haven't done that in 10 years. Definitely worth reading and quality was good.
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on 5 May 2015
One of my favourite books by McEwan. A bit of drama, a bit of psychology in a thriller that you will not give away. The CD is just as good as the book although it is abridged and closer to the film.
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on 24 November 2012
I bought this book for my english literature class. Although it is not my 'cup of tea' I have found the narrative skills of McEwan very interesting. I found the story line to have some exciting build-ups, and was very imaginative and different. Overall very good, worth a read!! :)
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