The Next Chapter·Dog-eared Reads

Why Amy Stuart re-reads this Ian McEwan novel for writing inspiration

The Toronto novelist and short story writer is a fan of the 2001 novel Atonement by Ian McEwan.
Amy Stuart is a Toronto-based author. (Paige Lindsay, Vintage Canada)

This interview originally aired on April 18, 2020.

Amy Stuart is a novelist and short story writer, currently living in Toronto. She is the author of the thriller Still Mine, released in 2016. In 2018, she published Still Water. The third book, Still Here, is coming out in 2020.

The book the she loves re-reading is the 2001 novel Atonement by British novelist Ian McEwan.

"One book that I have gone back to many times since reading it in teacher's college is Atonement by Ian McEwan. When I read that book, I was struck by all the language and the efficiency with which he was able to convey emotions and heartbreak. 

I've gone back to it many times to look over passages and just try to steal some of his tricks.

"He did some really clever things with plotting and twisting the story — pulling the rug out from under the reader at the end. I've gone back to it many times to look over passages and try to steal some of his tricks."

Amy Stuart's comments have been edited for length and clarity.

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