Newest Review: ... imagined that the man standing next to him, Jed Parry, was about to ruin his orderly life forever. The evening after the accident Par... more
Enduring Love - difficult to endure the entire book!
Enduring Love - Ian McEwan
Member Name: antoniarose
Enduring Love - Ian McEwan
Advantages: Great plot
Disadvantages: Tedious off-topic ramblings, slow development.
For part of my AS English Language and Literature exam I had to read Enduring Love. At first, I thought the book sounded rather interesting and I was keen to begin reading it, although it did not take me long to realise that it was not nearly as enjoyable as I had first though.
Enduring Love is a novel by Ian McEwan, and has also been released as a film under the same name. It tells the story of Joe Rose after an unfortunate ballooning accident, which brings him and a previously unknown man Jed Parry together. Parry suffers from a disorder known as deClarembault's syndrome, which makes the sufferer believe someone else is in love with them. Due to his syndrome Parry believes Joe loves him, which puts considerable strain upon Joe and his marriage to wife Clarissa.
As the novel develops the situation only worsens for Joe, with Parry taking even more extreme steps to deal with what he feels is Joe's devotion to him. To make matters worse, Clarissa refuses to believe Joe when he tells her that Parry is delusional - she believes it is Joe who is going crazy.
The book does have a dramatic ending, perhaps one of the best I have ever read - however this does not make up for how tedious the rest of the novel is. 95% of the 247 page novel is painful to read. Perhaps this is because I was having to study the novel, but I think if I had chosen to read it of my own accord I would not have even finished the book.
The character of Joe is a scientific writer and as such there are lengthy sections of the book devoted to Joe's ramblings about science - something which has never been of interest to me. Whilst some people may enjoy great paragraphs of McEwan's opinion on the hubble telescope, I did not. For me this was one of the two factors which ruined my enjoyment of the novel. The second was how overproduced the book felt. It seemed to me that McEwan aimed to produce a novel that appeared intellectual, almost as though every word had been changed using a thesaurus. This just gave me a headache whilst reading. It is neccesary to try and translate every section into understandable English. I know i'm moaning at intellect here, but usually I like to read a book to relax, something which was impossible to do here.
I will not criticise the book completely. The plot line is intriguing, if a little slow. McEwan has serious talent as a writer and if you are a fan of his work you will love this book. Unfortunately it just wasn't for me.
At the time of writing, Enduring Love can be purchased from Amazon for 4.85 (a very reasonable price for this book). The cover price is £7.99, which is what it is available from shops such as Waterstones for.
Summary: A book with an interesting story line, but difficult to really get into.