It is July 1962. Edward and Florence, young innocents married that morning, arrive at a hotel on the Dorset coast. At dinner in their rooms they struggle to suppress their private fears of the wedding night to come and, unbeknownst to them both, the events of the evening will haunt them for the rest of their lives.
Superb... The protagonists have everything to lose, and their faltering journey towards a point of no return is conjured into life my McEwan with irresistible subtlety, tact and force
On Chesil Beach is more than an event. It is a masterpiece
This is McEwan's mature style, one we have come to recognise from Atonement and Saturday. It is a polished, civilised style, and very distant from the shock tactics of his early work... McEwan brings Florence and Edward touchingly alive for us; and their seriousness, their idealism, and their desire for love draw us towards them
Keen on a sandy escape? We've rounded up some of the best moments in literature to transport you right there.
In celebration of Ian McEwan’s 70th birthday this month, archive director Stephen Enniss unearths 4 treasures from the author’s literary archive that give unique insights into his extraordinary career.