Debra on the fiction of Ian McEwan

First published last winter in Second Spring Journal, Debra’s article, “A Christian looks at the fiction of Ian McEwan”, is now available online at CatholicExchange.

Here’s how the article begins:

Two things need to be gotten out of the way before anyone attempts to address the fiction of English novelist Ian McEwan in a disapproving vein: First, he is one of the most acclaimed writers of our time; Second, unless your name happens to be, oh, John Updike, it is almost certain that McEwan is a better writer than you are.

In other words, one had best proceed with some humility, and I do. Rightly regarded as one of the finest stylists in the English language—McEwan’s prose is as perfectly calibrated as a Swiss watch, or a time bomb―his Booker Prize win in 1998, though for one of his fluffier little books, Amsterdam, was nonetheless not entirely misplaced. Sentence for sentence, it simply doesn’t get much better.

For the rest of the article, click here.

Categories: Updates-News-Events.


  1. Gunter

    A continuation of the problem of the Lost Generation writers, many of whom were outstanding at crafting a novel, but often flopped out like a fish when it came to providing meaning at the end of  the reading experience. But they were a continuation of the Romantics, n’est-ce pas?   There’s a Chesterton footnote here somewhere….

    • I just finished an adult ed class here at SOU on the short stories of John Cheever, and was having some of the same problems: lines and even paragraphs to weep for, but stories, as total package, that left me chilled and/or blank. Occasionally peeved, too, when Cheever cut loose in a more misogynist vein.The experience was heightened by contrast with my simultaneous re-reading of THE BROTHERS KARAMAZOV, which is the Real Deal altogether, IMHO. 

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