Monday, October 09, 2006


by Ian McEwan
It's easy to forget all the things that happen to us in a day. Pick a random date, say, two weeks ago, and it's tempting to say that "nothing much" happened then. But even on a slow day, a million tiny dramas and epiphanies can play themselves out. Some may lead nowhere, while others may be the start of life-changing developments. Henry Perowne, the hero of Saturday, is a comfortable guy, with a rewarding job, a loving wife, and two children he's proud of, and we follow him through what starts as a fairly unremarkable "day off." Terror, both remote (a possible terrorist attack on the news) and immediate (his mother's dementia, street thugs) hangs over the story, but Perowne is a capable and optimistic man. He's neither a hero or a villian, but an ordinary upper-middle-class guy who we're glad to get to know, especially his ordinary day gradually becomes extraordinary.

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