Paperbacks: Sweet Tooth, By Ian McEwan
Boyd Tonkin is Literary Editor at The Independent. An award-winning journalist, he was formerly Social Policy Editor of the New Statesman and has broadcast extensively for BBC arts and current affairs programmes. He has judged the Booker Prize, the Whitbread biography award, the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the David Cohen Prize for a lifetime's achievement in literature.
Friday 24 May 2013
To many younger readers, Ian McEwan's super-smart Cold War entertainment will function as a history lesson as much as a delicious box of story-telling tricks.
In 1972, with doomy talk of crisis at home and Soviet menace abroad, keen bishop's daughter Serena becomes a low-level spy for MI5. She sets out to ensnare a rising star of literature into a propaganda stunt. Beyond virtuoso twists and turns, McEwan lays out the foreign landscape of 40 years ago – from smoky pubs to fuming punditry - with wry, affectionate panache.
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