Atonement (OT but no spoilers)

Charles Butler hannibal at
Mon Apr 21 13:04:30 EDT 2003

Has he let go of the dead
> >bodies buried in concrete in the basement as a surprise ending? What
> >do you like so much about his writing?

Presumably you mean The Cement Garden? You should remember that that was his
very first book (need I say Changeover?), and yes, his writing's got a lot
more assured and generally less ghoulish since then. I actually think he's a
very humane writer, though he's still interested in extreme pscyhological
and sociopathic conditions. (I quite enjoyed the Cement Garden too, mind,
but I'm prepared to admit to a taste for the ghoulish.)

Ian (Riddell, I mean) is right about the first chapter of Enduring Love,
which has become justly celebrated as a tour de force of description,
tension and narrative orchestration, but Atonement is  the best of the ones
I've read overall. I don't think you'd find either of those books vile.


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