Ashley Hoopes's Reviews > On Chesil Beach

On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan
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really liked it

On Chesil Beach was an incredibly quick read that grabs you from the start (hello- a virgin on her wedding night set in England in the 1960's), and continues to impress with the vivid details the author paints each scene with, until the very last page. It is beautifully written, with the yearning and honest thoughts of both newlyweds leading up to the big night, culminating with the night itself and the repercussions that night would bring for years to come.

The unspoken expectations of each of the newlyweds are strikingly different yet hopeful. How their expectations are unmet and how they react to their disappointment forms the base for the story and how it shapes their future. That they were married in an age where couples did not have sex before marriage or even talk about the act, would obviously be a big part of why this tale unfolds the way it does. However, this tale could still be told from the eyes of many young newlyweds today who are overly optimistic with what their honeymoon and marriage will bring.

The way humans often easily misinterpret cues and how different males and females often are in their sexual needs and communicative styles makes this book a thought provoking quick little treat. The characters as lovable as they are confused.
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