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The Children Act

by Ian McEwan

The Children Act by Ian McEwan X
The Children Act by Ian McEwan
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  • First Published:
    Sep 2014, 240 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2015, 240 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Suzanne Reeder
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Power Reviewer
Diane S.

The Chidren Act
An author, I believe, takes a risk when he centers his novel around one character. So often a reader will rate their enjoyment of the book on whether or not they can relate to the character. In this story the main character is Fiona, approaching sixty she is a high court judge in the family court. She had given up the idea of having a child, concentrating on her career. She is long married to Jack, but their marriage has now hit a big road block.

In the beginning I felt a huge distance from the character, what kept me reading was her very interesting court cases and her inner thoughts about her judgments. But then, she does a few, very human out of character things and I slowly began to warm to her. Soon a big case, involving a seventeen yr. old boy, a Jehovah's witness whose parents and himself are refusing a life-saving blood transfusion on religious grounds, will alter her life in unexpected ways.

This is a quiet, introspective novel, the writing almost seamless. I enjoyed all the music references throughout as Fiona and a fellow lawyer play at various events. A whole person began to emerge, flawed like most of us, I began to take this character to heart. My enjoyment of this book slowly crept up on me and I realized just how much this author had included in this rather short novel. So I ended up liking this much more at the end than I did at the beginning.
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