Welcome to another bookish celebration of Teaser Tuesdays, hosted by Should Be Reading.

To join in, here’s how it works:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers.

Today I’m reading Atonement, by Ian McEwan, a story of emotional intensity, misunderstandings, and secrets.

The novel opens on a sweltering summer day in 1935 at the Tallis family’s mansion in the Surrey countryside. Thirteen-year-old Briony has written a play in honor of the visit of her adored older brother Leon; other guests include her three young cousins — refugees from their parent’s marital breakup — Leon’s friend Paul Marshall, the manufacturer of a chocolate bar called “Amo” that soldiers will be able to carry into war, and Robbie Turner, the son of the family charlady whose brilliantly successful college career has been funded by Mr. Tallis. Jack Tallis is absent from the gathering; he spends most of his time in London at the War Ministry and with his mistress. His wife Emily is a semi-invalid, nursing chronic migraine headaches. Their elder daughter Cecilia is also present; she has just graduated from Cambridge and is at home for the summer, restless and yearning for her life to really begin. Rehearsals for Briony’s play aren’t going well; her cousin Lola has stolen the starring role, the twin boys can’t speak the lines properly, and Briony suddenly realizes that her destiny is to be a novelist, not a dramatist.

In the midst of the long hot afternoon, Briony happens to be watching from a window when Cecilia strips off her clothes and plunges into the fountain on the lawn as Robbie looks on. Later that evening, Briony thinks she sees Robbie attacking Cecilia in the library, she reads a note meant for Cecilia, her cousin Lola is sexually assaulted, and she makes an accusation that she will repent for the rest of her life….


Teaser:  Reading these letters at the end of an exhausting day, Briony felt a dreamy nostalgia, a vague yearning for a long-lost life.  She could hardly feel sorry for herself.  She was the one who had cut herself off from home.  p. 263


So far, the story has evoked all kinds of emotions, and I have very intense reactions to the characters, especially one or two of them.

What are you sharing today?  I hope you’ll stop by with your links….

50 thoughts on “TEASER TUESDAYS — ATONEMENT — JAN. 31

    • I’m a big fan of the movie…nothing shows the countryside better than film. But there is a special something in the written word, too. I like to do both…books and movies.

      Thanks for stopping by, Hazel. I love the MacLaine quote, too.

  1. This one was hard for me…I had seen the movie, then read the book, and both times I really disliked Briony. I think it’s the eldest sister in me rebelling against her, knowing that I have sisters that have likewise said things they didn’t understand. And it’s such a sad story!

    Thanks for visiting my teaser :)

    • I really dislike Briony, too, Crystal. I thought that I might feel more kindly to her when reading the book…no, not so much. What I also disliked was how quickly the adults believed her, even encouraging her….

      Thanks for stopping by.

    • The author’s tone felt “matter-of-fact,” and almost as if he were observing the characters from afar. Maybe the “distancing” helps a bit with the emotional overload.

      Thanks for stopping by, Sandra.

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