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Amsterdam

by

Amsterdam Cover

 

Awards

Winner of the 1998 Booker Prize
A Globe and Mail Notable Book of 1998

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

On a chilly February day, two old friends meet in the throng outside a London 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, and Vernon is editor of the newspaper The Judge. Gorgeous, feisty Molly 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 that neither could have 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. A sharp contemporary morality tale, cleverly disguised as a comic novel, Amsterdam is "as sheerly enjoyable a book as one is likely to pick up this year" (The Washington Post Book World).

Review:

"By far his best work to date...an energizing tightrope between feeling and lack of feeling, between humanity's capacity to support and save and its equally ubiquitous penchant for detachment and cruelty." The San Diego Union-Tribune

Review:

"Ian McEwan has proven himself to be one of Britain's most distinct voices and one of its most versatile talents....Chilling and darkly comic." Chicago Tribune

Review:

"Beautifully spare prose, wicked observation, and dark comic brio." The Boston Globe

Review:

"A well-oiled machine....Ruthless and amusing." The New York Times Book Review

Review:

"A dark tour de force...perfectly fashioned." Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

Review:

"McEwan writes the sort of witty repartee and scathing retort we wished we thought of in the heat of battle. On a broader scale, McEwan's portrayal of the mutually parasitic relationship between politicians and journalists is as damning as it is comic." The Christian Science Monitor

Review:

"[A] smartly written tale that devolves slowly into tricks and soapy vapors....Middle-brow fiction British style, strong on the surface, vapid at the center." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"[McEwan's] ingenious conte cruel possesses the lightness of touch and split-second plotting of an operetta....There is no huffing and puffing, no waste, no mess. Every sentence carries the fugue-like plot forward to the final catastrophe." Michael Dirda, The Washington Post Book World

Review:

"[M]ordantly clever — but ultimately too clever for its own good....[W]hen...McEwan manipulates the plot to achieve a less than credible symmetry, it is obvious that, despite the Booker recognition, this is far from McEwan's best novel." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"Like other...McEwan novels, Amsterdam is a good thing in a small package: pungent, philosophical and beautifully written." Ben Greenman, Time Out New York

Review:

"Mr. McEwan writes a distinctively unadorned prose that speeds the reader along, but slows every so often for a layered, luxuriant image." Daphne Merkin, The New Yorker

Review:

"A study of the fragility of life — with its capacity for joy, genius, loss and betrayal...a captivating pleasure." The Wall Street Journal

Synopsis:

The wickedly comic Booker Prize winner. On a chilly February day, two old friends meet in the throng outside a crematorium to pay their last respects to the woman who had been a lover to both of them. In the days that follow the funeral, Clive and Vernon will make a pact that will have consequences that neither man could have foreseen.

About the Author

Ian McEwan has written two collections of short stories — First Love, Last Rites and In Between the Sheets — as well as seven novels: The Cement Garden, The Comfort of Strangers, The Child in Time, The Innocent, Black Dogs, The Daydreamer, and most recently, Enduring Love.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Megan Renehan, December 17, 2006 (view all comments by Megan Renehan)
Written In classic McEwan style, Amsterdam is a brief novel that, once read, will stay in the back of the readers' mind for years to come. The story cuts straight to the heart of the human condition; McEwan draws the reader into the lives of his characters and spares us nothing. In Clive and Vernon, we clearly see the obsession, panic, anger, jealousy, and revenge that we each have pushed down into the depths of ourselves. Amsterdam is a remarkable novel that will leave you breathless and reeling.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(12 of 28 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780385494243
Author:
McEwan, Ian
Publisher:
Anchor Books
Location:
New York
Subject:
General
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Great britain
Subject:
Fiction
Subject:
London
Subject:
Composers
Subject:
Suspense
Subject:
Political corruption
Subject:
Editors
Subject:
Foreign ministers
Subject:
London (england)
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series Volume:
no. 20
Publication Date:
November 1999
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
208
Dimensions:
8.05x5.15x.55 in. .43 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Award Winners
Featured Titles » Man Booker Prize Winners
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Mystery » A to Z

Amsterdam Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$8.95 In Stock
Product details 208 pages Anchor Publishing (MD) - English 9780385494243 Reviews:
"Review" by , "By far his best work to date...an energizing tightrope between feeling and lack of feeling, between humanity's capacity to support and save and its equally ubiquitous penchant for detachment and cruelty."
"Review" by , "Ian McEwan has proven himself to be one of Britain's most distinct voices and one of its most versatile talents....Chilling and darkly comic."
"Review" by , "Beautifully spare prose, wicked observation, and dark comic brio."
"Review" by , "A well-oiled machine....Ruthless and amusing."
"Review" by , "A dark tour de force...perfectly fashioned."
"Review" by , "McEwan writes the sort of witty repartee and scathing retort we wished we thought of in the heat of battle. On a broader scale, McEwan's portrayal of the mutually parasitic relationship between politicians and journalists is as damning as it is comic."
"Review" by , "[A] smartly written tale that devolves slowly into tricks and soapy vapors....Middle-brow fiction British style, strong on the surface, vapid at the center."
"Review" by , "[McEwan's] ingenious conte cruel possesses the lightness of touch and split-second plotting of an operetta....There is no huffing and puffing, no waste, no mess. Every sentence carries the fugue-like plot forward to the final catastrophe."
"Review" by , "[M]ordantly clever — but ultimately too clever for its own good....[W]hen...McEwan manipulates the plot to achieve a less than credible symmetry, it is obvious that, despite the Booker recognition, this is far from McEwan's best novel."
"Review" by , "Like other...McEwan novels, Amsterdam is a good thing in a small package: pungent, philosophical and beautifully written."
"Review" by , "Mr. McEwan writes a distinctively unadorned prose that speeds the reader along, but slows every so often for a layered, luxuriant image."
"Review" by , "A study of the fragility of life — with its capacity for joy, genius, loss and betrayal...a captivating pleasure."
"Synopsis" by , The wickedly comic Booker Prize winner. On a chilly February day, two old friends meet in the throng outside a crematorium to pay their last respects to the woman who had been a lover to both of them. In the days that follow the funeral, Clive and Vernon will make a pact that will have consequences that neither man could have foreseen.
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