Posted by: felinegroovy | May 14, 2006


Do you sometimes read a book and inside your head just read “bla bla bla” ….. ? And then there are others that prompt epiphanies. Moments when you just want the world to be silent so you let it all sink in … let the quiet little lessons sink in deep. I had one of those with Saturday which was a surprise. We read Enduring Love for a club book and I wasn’t so impressed. Yeah it was a lot better than The Bronze Horseman (the bla bla book) which I’m reading now (great beach, holiday read tho!) but still I didn’t believe in Enduring Love. Saturday, however is another story. It prompted in me, a break, a chance to stop and look.

I liked the writing …the couples in each section crossing the square intrigued me – some might have found that extraneous, frivolous, extraneous, not necessary, but I liked it. In some way it kept the structure and slowed the pace, gave a way of locating me as a reader above the story so I could slow down and not be engulfed in his life.

I truly enjoyed the revenge aspect of the story, it’s resolution. More than anything though, I liked it’s pace, the way it lead me through the big world and the little world of the main character all at the same time. I enjoyed McEwan’s journey into the world of ordinary and extraordinary love, life, family and all it’s mundanities.

There it is, as I write I see all the complexities in it. A book about life’s mundanities – a day – a life. But not. A world of intricacy. Of big questions. Of us walking through this mad world. Gee gosh and golly, wish I could pull a famous quote at this point.

When I was recommended this book, it was suggested that it was a bit of a bloke’s book. I’m not quite sure what this means …. Desperately I tried to regain a head full of Iriguay and Lacan and Kristeva and comparative literature and those years of serious questioning …. too late. Too many wines at the conference, too many lost brain cells. All I can do is ask some questions ….
Q 1. Is it blokey because a serious neurosurgeon is the narrator?
Q2, Is it blokey because it asks big serious questions about the world and about war and places the narrator in a traditional masculine role within the family … and transpose that out to the God role, the Patriarch …are here it comes all rolling back in. The patriarch, where else do I get to use that word?
Q3. Is it blokey because it’s so self centred, that is the narrator is so self centred.

Not a word about my epiphany here … next meeting perhaps…


  1. Ahh a literary epiphany, its been ages since I had one.
    I must confess to not breading anywhere near enough (both quantity and variety). I feel my brain going mushy and a bit fik.
    OK Ben Elton (and clones) have been the main source in the last couple of years, so yes, I am no danger of being confused for literatti glitteratti.
    The last epiphany that springs to the mush was a long long time ago. George Orwell’s Down and out in Paris and London. Being completely broke and living as simple a life as is possible at that stage was timely. I found this book really powerful in it’s simplicity and honesty. Lines from it still resonate often.
    Orwell is def my author of choice. Not everything on his list is brilliant (particularly short stories) but his writing is mostly as straight-down-the-line observation of the human animal and social sructure/classes as you will find.
    Post modern existentional flowery prose … no, not for me thanks! Makes me wonder “where did the story go in all those lovely words anyway?? Now where is my theosaurus?”.
    Any suggestions for a good read anyone?

  2. I’d reccomend the Sportswriter to you. Great story, straight forward use of language, deceptively deep analysis of the human condition. Find it in a 2nd hand bookshop. It’s by Richard Ford, if you find Independance Day (also by Ford) I’ll swap you The Sports writer for it!

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