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    The Innocent (Vintage Books) (Paperback) By (author) Ian McEwan

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    DescriptionThe setting is Berlin. Into this divided city, wrenched between East and West, between past and present; comes twenty-five-year-old Leonard Marnham, assigned to a British-American surveillance team. Though only a pawn in an international plot that is never fully revealed to him, Leonard uses his secret work to escape the bonds of his ordinary life - and to lose his unwanted innocence. The promise of his new life begins to be fulfilled as Leonard becomes a crucial part of the surveillance team, while simultaneously being initiated into a new world of love and sex by Maria, a beautiful young German woman. It is a promise that turns to horror in the course of one terrible evening - a night when Leonard Marnham learns just how much of his innocence he's willing to shed.


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    Title
    The Innocent
    Authors and contributors
    By (author) Ian McEwan
    Physical properties
    Format: Paperback
    Number of pages: 240
    Width: 128 mm
    Height: 198 mm
    Thickness: 20 mm
    Weight: 200 g
    Language
    English
    ISBN
    ISBN 13: 9780099277095
    ISBN 10: 0099277093
    Classifications

    BIC E4L: GEN
    Nielsen BookScan Product Class 3: F1.1
    LC subject heading:
    DC21: 823.914
    BIC subject category V2: FA
    DC22: FIC
    Libri: ENGL3010, ENGM1010
    LC subject heading:
    Warengruppen-Systematik des deutschen Buchhandels: 21110
    Ingram Subject Code: FT
    Ingram Theme: CULT/GERMNY, CULT/WEUROP
    BISAC V2.8: FIC025000, FIC031000, FIC019000, FIC006000
    Thema V1.0: FHD, FBA
    Publisher
    VINTAGE
    Imprint name
    VINTAGE
    Publication date
    01 September 1998
    Publication City/Country
    London
    Author Information
    Ian McEwan is the author of two collections of stories and twelve previous novels, including Enduring Love, Amsterdam, for which he won the Booker Prize in 1998, Atonement and, most recently, Solar.
    Review quote
    "To call The Innocent a spy novel would be like calling Lord of the Flies a boy's adventure yarn...it ensure McEwan's major status" Sunday Times "The sheer cleverness of the book is dazzling, and only fully to be appreciated as you turn the last page: but then cleverness is a real virtue here, the best guide possible to the questionable territory between innocence and whatever comes after" London Review of Books "It's the most tightly plotted of Ian McEwan's novels, and to argue properly for its excellence would involve showing how the political and emotional themes are inseparable from its narrative ingenuity, the patterns of revelation and about-turn which mark its final pages" -- Jonathan Coe Guardian "Generous in scale, simple in its hideous impact...Ironically, he has celebrated the obsequies of the East-West spy thriller by writing one of the subtlest" Mail on Sunday "Deft, taut fiction... Many English writers have been compared to Evelyn Waugh, often wrongly, but this book can stand with the master's best" The Times
    Review text
    McEwan's latest - his best shot at a popular novel - is something of a departure from his previous work (The Child in Time, The Comfort of Strangers, etc.), but no less skillful in design or execution. Part romance, part murder mystery, and part spy intrigue, this cool tale of postwar Berlin relies on a number of historical and dramatic ironies for its punch. As the Cold War begins to freeze, Leonard Marnham, a shy and dithering young electrician from England, is assigned to work on a top-secret, Anglo-American project in West Berlin. With no experience in intelligence, the "clumsy, reticent" Brit is soon engulfed in a world of secrecy. Bob Glass, Leonard's gruff Yank superior, considers the English inept and sloppy, incapable of seeing secrecy as the essence of individuality. For over a year, they have to work together on a massive piece of spying - the creation of an underground tunnel into the Russian sector that will allow the CIA and MI6 to tap master phonelines. As Leonard and Glass develop an improbable friendship, neither knows that the Russians have been on to them since the beginning. Meanwhile, Leonard - the most obvious "innocent" here - loses his virginity to a 30-year-old German woman, Maria Eckdorf, and begins a relationship that must also be shrouded in secrecy. Just as they settle into the miserable ordinariness of living together, they're visited by Maria's ex-husband, a violent drank, whom Leonard kills in self. defense. Fearing disbelief, the young couple attempt to cover up their crime, of which they're technically innocent. But the difficulties of dumping a hacked-up body lead Leonard back to his workplace, and also cause him to betray the project. When the Russians crash through the tunnel - for reasons unrelated to Leonard's conscious treason - he's eventually called home, but his once-pure love for Maria has been irreparably defiled. A coda, set 30 years later, solves many of the remaining mysteries, and suggests the depth of innocence and false knowledge at play back in the days of high-spying. McEwan's clinical account of dismemberment reminds us of the dark imagination displayed in his other work - it's also bound to turn off the wider audience who would otherwise enjoy this clean and clever fiction. (Kirkus Reviews)
    Flap copy
    The setting is Berlin. Into this divided city, wrenched between East and West, between past and present; comes twenty-five-year-old Leonard Marnham, assigned to a British-American surveillance team. Though only a pawn in an international plot that is never fully revealed to him, Leonard uses his secret work to escape the bonds of his ordinary life -- and to lose his unwanted innocence. The promise of his new life begins to be fulfilled as Leonard becomes a crucial part of the surveillance team, while simultaneously being initiated into a new world of love and sex by Maria, a beautiful young German woman. It is a promise that turns to horror in the course of one terrible evening -- a night when Leonard Marnham learns just how much of his innocence he's willing to shed. "From the Paperback edition.