95. The Children Act by Ian McEwan
I loved Atonement, but I feel like I should just cut my losses with Ian McEwan at this point because I have not really liked anything else that I’ve read by him. I wasn’t even planning on reading The Children Act until I heard an interview with him about it on NPR that made me think it sounded interesting, so I decided to give it a chance. I should have stuck with my first instincts and stayed away. At least it was pretty short.
Fiona is a High Court Judge faced with determining what is in the best interest of a 17 year old boy whose parents are Jehovah’s Witnesses and refusing a potentially life-saving blood transfusion. Meanwhile she is facing challenges in her personal life when her husband tells her he wants to have an open marriage. Based on the interview I heard, I thought the book was more about her developing a relationship with the boy and it influencing the choices she had to make. That didn’t really play out. They barely interacted and when they did it took a kind of creepy turn. It didn’t seem like the book was really much about the case at all. I give it a 3 out of 10.