Atonement… flows through time, like a river

Title: AtonementAtonement
Author: Ian McEwan
Publisher: Jonathan Cape (2001)
Pages: 371 (hardcover version)
Price: £6.29 (paperback)

Atonement is like a big river: it flows steadily, without shocks. But it flows. So, the only risk is to find yourself at the end of river, close to the sea, unable to understand how it happened.

Atonement is not a thriller. There are no dramatic turns of events, but you just can’t put it down. Ian McEwan’s style is so polite, so elegant that you can’t help thinking like Briony, the protagonist. You can feel her pain, you can taste her tears. And, what is really incredible… it happens naturally.

The story flows across sixty years, touching three moments in the characters’ lives. It starts in 1935, in a country house in England: Briony is preparing a little show to welcome her cousin home from College.

That night, something will change the lives of every person in that house. And we will follow the consequences on everyone’s life, starting from that terrible moment.

The second and third situations…. well, I can’t tell you anything about without giving up all the surprises!

Ian Mc Ewan describes the Second World War, through his characters’ eyes. Not only he tells us what happened, but he also describes how the ones that lived through the war considering it a tragedy felt, comparing their feelings and reactions with  those of ones, who were able to find an opportunity in that dramatic event.

I suggest this beautiful book to people who choose slow reads, who want to feel emotions, and to travel through time.