The Children Act

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The Children Act

by Ian Mcewan

Knopf Canada | September 9, 2014 | Hardcover

The Children Act is rated 3.1818 out of 5 by 11.
A brilliant, emotionally wrenching new novel from the author of Atonement and Amsterdam.
 
Fiona Maye is a High Court judge in London presiding over cases in family court. She is fiercely intelligent, well respected, and deeply immersed in the nuances of her particular field of law. Often the outcome of a case seems simple from the outside, the course of action to ensure a child's welfare obvious. But the law requires more rigor than mere pragmatism, and Fiona is expert in considering the sensitivities of culture and religion when handing down her verdicts.
 
But Fiona's professional success belies domestic strife. Her husband, Jack, asks her to consider an open marriage and, after an argument, moves out of their house. His departure leaves her adrift, wondering whether it was not love she had lost so much as a modern form of respectability; whether it was not contempt and ostracism she really fears. She decides to throw herself into her work, especially a complex case involving a seventeen-year-old boy whose parents will not permit a lifesaving blood transfusion because it conflicts with their beliefs as Jehovah's Witnesses. But Jack doesn't leave her thoughts, and the pressure to resolve the case--as well as her crumbling marriage--tests Fiona in ways that will keep readers thoroughly enthralled until the last stunning page.

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 240 pages, 8.51 × 5.98 × 0.93 in

Published: September 9, 2014

Publisher: Knopf Canada

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0345809629

ISBN - 13: 9780345809629

Found in: Fiction and Literature

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely Wonderful This book was quite wonderful. Maybe because I work in the law field so it was more appealing to me, however, it wasn't dry or boring. It was detailed and classic. You will want to finish the book once you start reading it. Too good to put down!
Date published: 2015-02-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Rings True McEwan's gift with the English language is indisputable and the issues dealt with in The Children Act are both complex and timely.
Date published: 2015-02-02
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Skip This One I usually love Heather's Picks - but this one did not meet my expectations. I did not love the way it was written and some of the story lines were rather weak. I would skip reading this one.
Date published: 2015-01-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The judge adjudicates the Children Act, the affected parties interact. Ian McEwan is among the handful of wise and thoughtful writers now practising the art and craft of English language literary fiction. Several of his recent novels demonstrate his capacity to deal with profound, difficult and important questions. The Children Act is a piece of UK legislation designed to allow properly constituted authorities to decide the fate of a child below the legal age of consent when parents or guardians are unfit to care for the child or are about to decide on a course of action detrimental to the well being, even the life of the child. Ultimately a family court judge makes the decision. McEwan's leading character in this short novel is a female family court judge who must decide whether to intervene - to order a blood transfusion - to save the life of a very intelligent 17 year old youth with acute leukaemia. The youth is insightful, fully understands his alternative fates: death without transfusion, almost certain healthy life after transfusion and chemotherapy. The meat of the novel is the dialogue and emotional relationship that develops between the judge, whose marriage is unraveling, and the youth who is attracted to her by her intelligence and wit. It would spoil the pleasure for putative readers to reveal the ultimate outcome. Suffice to say that this is a first class novel, guaranteed to provoke deep thought. Five Stars.
Date published: 2014-12-29
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Just no. A god awful book. Not worth the time or money.
Date published: 2014-12-21
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Had a bad hair day...Had a bad book day. I was very disappointed in this book. I was very excited when I ordered the book, but right from the get go, the book didn't go anywhere for me. It was almost as if the author was writing to just get it over with.
Date published: 2014-10-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from I also loved it! I was totally involved with the characters. It kept my attention to the end and I was not disappointed with the ending.
Date published: 2014-10-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved it! What can I say, I love Ian McEwan! Once again he captivated me with this new book! I have already passed it on to a friend and suggested others buy it.
Date published: 2014-10-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Almost... Ian McEwan has been a perennial favourite of mine. His novel, Saturday, remains the for me the best of the best. I delved into The Children Act with the usual relish. Thoroughly enjoyed the emotional and philosophical conundrums that the heroine faces. She is both a flawed and admirable character. Couldn't put the book down. And then the ending.... Just way too easy. A disappointing conclusion to a riveting read
Date published: 2014-10-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good Read overall I enjoyed this book overall, bit disappointed in the ending.
Date published: 2014-10-05
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Not worth the time This is a very dreary book, with pedantic writing and joyless words. Predictable and boring. Fast read but not worth the hours.
Date published: 2014-09-22

– More About This Product –

The Children Act

The Children Act

by Ian Mcewan

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 240 pages, 8.51 × 5.98 × 0.93 in

Published: September 9, 2014

Publisher: Knopf Canada

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0345809629

ISBN - 13: 9780345809629

From the Publisher

A brilliant, emotionally wrenching new novel from the author of Atonement and Amsterdam.
 
Fiona Maye is a High Court judge in London presiding over cases in family court. She is fiercely intelligent, well respected, and deeply immersed in the nuances of her particular field of law. Often the outcome of a case seems simple from the outside, the course of action to ensure a child's welfare obvious. But the law requires more rigor than mere pragmatism, and Fiona is expert in considering the sensitivities of culture and religion when handing down her verdicts.
 
But Fiona's professional success belies domestic strife. Her husband, Jack, asks her to consider an open marriage and, after an argument, moves out of their house. His departure leaves her adrift, wondering whether it was not love she had lost so much as a modern form of respectability; whether it was not contempt and ostracism she really fears. She decides to throw herself into her work, especially a complex case involving a seventeen-year-old boy whose parents will not permit a lifesaving blood transfusion because it conflicts with their beliefs as Jehovah's Witnesses. But Jack doesn't leave her thoughts, and the pressure to resolve the case--as well as her crumbling marriage--tests Fiona in ways that will keep readers thoroughly enthralled until the last stunning page.

About the Author

IAN McEWAN is the bestselling author of fifteen books, including the novels Sweet Tooth; Solar, winner of the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize; On Chesil Beach; Saturday; Atonement, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award and the W. H.Smith Literary Award; The Comfort of Strangers and Black Dogs, both short-listed for the Booker Prize; Amsterdam, winner of the Booker Prize; and The Child in Time, winner of the Whitbread Award; as well as the story collections First Love, Last Rites, winner of the Somerset Maugham Award, and In Between the Sheets. He lives in Gloucestershire.

Editorial Reviews

Praise for The Children Act:
"Like all of McEwan's work, The Children Act...is a very readable narrative, fortified with suspense and displaying a taste for the lurid." Philip Marchand, National Post

"Fans of Ian McEwan are going to love The Children Act.... Both heartbreaking and funny at the same time." The Vancouver Sun