Image credit: Here
When I was searching for novels that fell into the "Post 9/11 Literature" category I was really excited to see that Saturday was considered to be one. Although I had at that stage only ever read one other of McEwan's novels, I knew that I would enjoy anything he had written. I was right.
Saturday is set in the course of a single day but this fact is easy to forget as this novel moves along at such a pace and so much happens that only once you've finished and are sitting back, reflecting that you think crikey - that was all just one day! The novel follows Henry Perowne, a well-known neurosurgeon living a life of affluence and contentment in Central London on a day that is anything but normal. A cascading series of events happen that culminate in a heart stopping climax that has the reader in the grip of a powerful suspense and intrigue. McEwan has painted these micro level events on the background of 2003, post 9/11 pre-Iraq London in what appears to me to be a reflection of the macro scale political happenings at the interpersonal level.
This novel won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for McEwan in 2006, a highly prestigious award based out of the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. I'm not surprised, it really is a masterpiece and a very thoughtful and clear-headed view of the world, post 9/11, unlike some other novels I have read which seem to grab desperately at the straws of patriotism and "us vs them" - all understandable reactions but not particularly helpful literary contributions.
I'd highly recommend this novel - especially to those who enjoy a good read that has intelligent content, a gripping story-line and characters with such depth that you feel like you actually know them.
Have you read this or any of McEwan's other books? Which have you enjoyed the most?
[Image of Ian McEwan credit: Here]