Fiction, General Fiction
Paperback Published on: 22/06/2023
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When the world was still counting the cost of the Second World War and the Iron Curtain had closed, young Roland Baines’s life was turned upside down. 2,000 miles from his mother’s protective love, stranded at an unusual boarding school, his vulnerability attracted piano teacher Miss Miriam Cornell, leaving scars as well as a memory of love that will never fade. Now, when his wife vanishes, leaving him alone with his tiny son, Roland is forced to confront the reality of his restless existence. As the radiation from Chernobyl spreads across Europe, he begins a search for answers that looks deep into his family history and will last for the rest of his life. From the Suez Crisis to the Cuban Missile Crisis, the fall of the Berlin Wall to the current pandemic and climate change, Roland sometimes rides with the tide of history, but more often struggles against it. Haunted by lost opportunities, he seeks solace through every possible means – music, literature, friends, sex, politics and, finally, love cut tragically short, then love ultimately redeemed. His journey raises important questions for us all. Can we take full charge of the course of our lives without damage to others? How do global events beyond our control shape our lives and our memories? And what can we really learn from the traumas of the past? Epic, mesmerising and deeply humane, Lessons is a chronicle for our times – a powerful meditation on history and humanity through the prism of one man’s lifetime.

  • Publisher: Vintage Publishing
  • ISBN: 9781529116311
  • Number of pages: 496
  • Weight: 395g
  • Dimensions: 198 x 130 x 32 mm

Customer Reviews

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More Fun Than Usual
Having found “Machines Like Me” rather sterile, this one has more life in it, I felt. As others have noted, it does go on a bit - especially about the con... READ MORE
Derek Duerden
Not for me - I didn't finish it, sorry!
I was sent a copy of Lessons by Ian McEwan to read and review by NetGalley. I was enjoying this novel at the beginning, liking the way it was written. Un... READ MORE
How Did I not Know Ian McEwan?
Sometimes you stumble into a circle of light so bright that you wonder how you missed it all those years. Reading Ian McEwan was one of those moments. Of... READ MORE
John  Gilligan
Such a great disappointment
McEwan has managed to bury an interesting subject with historical padding and irrelevant rambling diversions, turning material for a novella into a novel j... READ MORE
Martin Shire
Love, loss and lessons learned and left behind…all the ingredients for an epic novel
Lessons clocks in at a mere 483 pages and by the time you complete it, you’ll feel like you’ve lived a lifetime. That is not intended as a criticism, rathe... READ MORE
Nick A