Be omnivorous, don't just read one kind of book, read everything. - Richard Wagamese

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Review: Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan

Publisher: Knopf
Pages: 336
Released: 2012
Source: Egalley/Publisher
Rating: 4.5/5


Serena Frome is the daughter of an Anglican bishop, she’s always loved books and literature, but her mother didn’t want her to become another educated housewife. When Serena showed signs of having a mathematical mind, her parents sent her to Cambridge to become a mathematician. When Serena has a brief affair with an older man, he constantly questioned Serena, and forced her to think outside the box. Unknowingly, Serena was being groomed for the Intelligence Society. When the affair ends, Serena takes an entry level secretary job with the Society with the intention of advancing her career. Soon Serena finds herself being briefed about a secret mission. She is to infiltrate the literary circle, and recruit Tom Haley, an up and coming writer. Serena quickly finds herself falling in love with him, and doesn’t know who she can trust within the society to help her out.


I’ve read a few Ian McEwan novels and I think this was my favorite. My second favorite would have to be Atonement. Perhaps, I prefer his novels with female protagonists. I thought the writing was solid, and the background historical knowledge really added to the story. McEwan’s writing is captivating; readers will easily be absorbed by his plot twists and entrancing characterization.

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this one, and I found myself intrigued right from the beginning. Serena was a secret bookish girl, who was forced to study math. She used her time away from home to explore and figure out who she really is. Her father’s background as a bishop doesn’t really play into the novel too much. Serena isn’t a sheltered, good little girl, she’s explorative and determined which I really appreciated.

I highly recommend this one. I really enjoyed the story and would love to read more of McEwan’s books. I’ve read Atonement, On Chesil Beach and Sweet Tooth. My least favorite was On Chesil Beach. If you have any recommendations for his books, please let me know. If you were wondering if you should give this book a chance, go ahead! I really enjoyed it.


  1. I really liked Atonement and am looking forward to reading this one. Great review!

  2. I liked Atonement and On Chesil Beach so I may have to try this one. It's getting great reviews and now I can add yours to that list. Thanks!

  3. Sounds very good! I haven't read this author before. I'm partial to female protagonists in general, especially bookish ones. :)

  4. Thanks for the review. I've been wondering whether to read this or not, I think I will :)

  5. I haven't read any of his books, but the synopsis to this one really attracts me. Thanks for your recommendation!

  6. I liked Atonement, right up until the end so I've been reluctant to pick up any of his other books. I'll have to think about this one.

    1. Me too. I was one of my only friends who didn't think the ending was all that.

  7. I love McEwan, but some of his books have been hit or miss for me. I got this one at SIBA, and am dying to read it. It sounds like it's an excellent page-turner, and that is what I always love about this author. He knows how to keep his readers hooked. Wonderful review today on a book that I am anxious to get started with!!

  8. Great review. I haven't read Ian McEwan, but this one sounds really good! I keep thinking I should read him, so maybe this would be a good place to start!
    2 Kids and Tired Books

  9. I've only read Atonement but I really liked it. The premise of this one sounds interesting!!

  10. The only Ian McEwan novels I've read are Atonement, which I absolutely loved, and Amsterdam, which I only thought was okay. This one sounds great so I'm going to add it to my never ending tbr pile.

  11. Wow, I loved Atonement! You have me intrigued about this book on the fact you liked this one better!

  12. I was kinda on the fence about Atonement but far enough over it to give McEwan another shot. He's one hell of a writer.

  13. I see you haven't read McEwan's ENDURING LOVE. That was a very good one. Don't be fooled by the title. It's not a love story, not romantic at all.

    It would have helped me to know while I was reading it that this strange obsession one person has with the main character is a true sickness. I wish I had read the AFTERWARD before rather than after I read the story. I would have understood more. I suggest you read it first.