Lessons by Ian McEwan

Lessons by Ian McEwan

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The story of a life. The story of the summer.

When the world is still counting the cost of the Second World War and the Iron Curtain has descended, young Roland Baines's life is turned upside down. Stranded at boarding school, his vulnerability attracts his piano teacher, Miriam Cornell, leaving scars as well as a memory of love that will never fade.

Twenty-five years later Roland's wife mysteriously vanishes, and he is left alone with their baby son. Her disappearance sparks of journey of discovery that will continue for decades, as Roland confronts the reality of his rootless existence and attempts to embrace the uncertainty - and freedom - of his future.


"Brilliant . . . Nobody is better at writing about entropy and indignity — among other topics — than Ian McEwan . . . One way to read Lessons is as a self-repudiation of the maneuver at which McEwan has become virtuosic. More authors should repudiate their virtuosity. The results are exciting." —The New York Times Book Review

“McEwan’s new novel is a profound demonstration of his remarkable skill. Lessons progresses in time the way a rising tide takes the beach: a cycle of forward surges and seeping retreats, giving us a clearer and fuller sense of Roland’s life. He becomes a kind of Zelig character passing through momentous changes in the late-20th century. Indeed, even more than McEwan’s previous novels, Lessons is a story that so fully embraces its historical context that it calls into question the synthetic timelessness of much contemporary fiction.”—The Washington Post

“Insightful . . . Engaging . . . Expansive and unhurried, Lessons explores how one man’s life is shaped by the unpredictable sweep of history.”Seattle Times

Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 978-0593468630
Pages: 512