I always approach a new McEwan with a certain wariness. He has the capacity to disturb and chill (The Comfort of Strangers) to grip from the first few pages (A Child in Time, Enduring love, On Chesil Beach) and to absorb (Atonement). But I also found some books far from fascinating, Amsterdam, Saturday and Solar.
But The Children Act was compelling. It centres on High Court Judge Fiona Maye’s legal decisions about the welfare of children. Childless Fiona’s marriage is in crisis while she has to weigh up the moral, ethical and legal aspects on several cases. But it is the case of 17 year old Adam which becomes personal and threatens her objectivity and is at the heart of this short, tightly-written novel. I found the potentially ‘dry’ subject matter utterly engrossing.
So of course I will keep coming back to this thought–provoking writer