By Ian Mcewan
Nan A. Talese, Hardcover, 9780385511803, 304pp.
Publication Date: March 22, 2005
From the pen of a master — the #1 bestselling, Booker Prize–winning author of Atonement — comes an astonishing novel that captures the fine balance of happiness and the unforeseen threats that can destroy it. A brilliant, thrilling page-turner that will keep readers on the edge of their seats.
Saturday is a masterful novel set within a single day in February 2003. Henry Perowne is a contented man — a successful neurosurgeon, happily married to a newspaper lawyer, and enjoying good relations with his children. Henry wakes to the comfort of his large home in central London on this, his day off. He is as at ease here as he is in the operating room. Outside the hospital, the world is not so easy or predictable. There is an impending war against Iraq, and a general darkening and gathering pessimism since the New York and Washington attacks two years before.
On this particular Saturday morning, Perowne’s day moves through the ordinary to the extraordinary. After an unusual sighting in the early morning sky, he makes his way to his regular squash game with his anaesthetist, trying to avoid the hundreds of thousands of marchers filling the streets of London, protesting against the war. A minor accident in his car brings him into a confrontation with a small-time thug. To Perowne’s professional eye, something appears to be profoundly wrong with this young man, who in turn believes the surgeon has humiliated him — with savage consequences that will lead Henry Perowne to deploy all his skills to keep his family alive.
Praise for Ian McEwan's Atonement:
“A beautiful and majestic fictional panorama.” —John Updike, The New Yorker
“Flat-out brilliant . . . Lush, detailed, vibrantly colored and intense.” —San Francisco Chronicle
“A tour de force . . . Every bit as affecting as it is gripping.” –Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“McEwan is one of the most gifted literary storytellers alive. . . . [Atonement] implants in the memory a living, flaming presence.” —James Wood, The New Republic