Amsterdam

Amsterdam

Book - 1999
Average Rating:
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Baker & Taylor
The critically acclaimed author of Enduring Love lends a comic twist to a contemporary morality tale involving two eminent Englishmen who make a pact over the grave of a mutual lover, with disastrous consequences. 35,000 first printing.

Blackwell North Amer
On a chilly February day, two old friends meet in the throng outside a crematorium to pay their last respects to Molly Lane. Both Clive Linley and Vernon Halliday had been Molly's lovers in the days before they reached their current eminence. Clive is Britain's most successful modern composer; Vernon is editor of the quality broadsheet The Judge. Gorgeous, feisty Molly had had other lovers, too, notably Julian Garmony, foreign secretary, a notorious right-winger tipped to be the next prime minister. In the days that follow Molly's funeral, Clive and Vernon will make a pact with consequences neither has foreseen. Each will make a disastrous moral decision, their friendship will be tested to its limits, and Julian Garmony will be fighting for his political life. And why Amsterdam? What happens there to Clive and Vernon is the most delicious climax of a novel brimming with surprises.

Baker
& Taylor

Two old friends, Clive Linley and Vernon Halliday, both former lovers of of the late Molly Lane, meet to pay their last respects and make a pact that will have unforeseen consequences

Publisher: New York : Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, 1999, c1998
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780385494236
0385494238
Characteristics: 193 p. ; 20 cm

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t
TechWriter1
Aug 05, 2016

I love McEwan's writing. His stories often make me uncomfortable at some point but I'm compelled to plow through my feelings and take in the whole story. It's usually worth it.

TSCPL_ChrisB Jun 03, 2016

Despite receiving several nominations throughout the years, Ian McEwan has won the Man Booker prize only once, with his novel Amsterdam. This one, built primarily on tension and dry humor, reads more like a long short story than even a novella.

f
FVReader
Nov 26, 2015

This may be my favorite book by Ian McEwan yet. The story built with a tension that increased as the pages turned.
The themes of loyalty, friendship and career are intermixed throughout. A wonderful and well-written story. Of the three of his books that I've read, this one is by far the darkest.
None of these characters is likable but they all exist in real life. That's the scary, tension-filled part.

m
Miranda5
Apr 11, 2010

I read three quarters of the book, and to be honest, I still had no idea what the book was about, but that didn't matter. While the plot reveals itself towards the end, and the whole book works up to it, the plot line is surprisingly interesting. There wasn't a point during the story when I was actually bored and wishing I didn't have to read through the 175 pages.

Such a refreshing style! I enjoyed not knowing what I was reading.

That being said, did George plan everything to happen this way, or was it all a coincidence that it worked out the way it did? I love the little quirk at the end. Also, I can't get past how Clive sees music: it's like a vivid adventure--he can see the assent up the mountain, the twist in the labyrinth, etc.--and all of this is conveyed through the music. I'd love to see music as a series of scenes, like in a movie (e.g., flight of the bumblebee.. what would water skiing sound like if it were transformed into notes on a page?).

My review does it no justice, and I'm sure not everyone will agree with my assessment of the novel, but it's a pleasant read I'm sure to recommend.

m
mvincelli
Mar 07, 2010

Another weak Booker. Well-written, but dry. Very british.

h
Hadley
Dec 04, 2007

McEwan's best books -- The Child In Time, Enduring Love and Atonement -- have indelible scenes and remarkable story lines. Every McEwan book has its charms, but this one has fewer than most. Won the Booker Prize in 1998.

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