• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

A comparative essay of the openings of 'Enduring Love' and 'Knowledge of Angels'.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

A comparative essay of the openings of 'Enduring Love' and 'Knowledge of Angels' Compare and contrast the openings of the novels 'Enduring Love' and 'Knowledge of Angels'. Examine in detail both form and content, and assess the effectiveness of each as a beginning of a novel. 'Enduring Love' by Ian McEwan and 'Knowledge of Angels' by Jill Patton Walsh are two very different novels, concerning very different subject matters, yet both have managed to master capturing the reader's avid attention and imagination in their enthralling openings. One about a catastrophe involving a hot air balloon, another set on a distant Mediterranean island, both novels have the essential components to a compelling introduction. They not only provide the reader with an insight into the novel, but when written in an original and intriguing style, as both these novels have been, the reader becomes drawn in, causing them to read on. The first line of the two introductions are both equally fascinating. 'Enduring Love' begins with suspense, as the first line, "The beginning was simple to mark", causes the reader to question the beginning of what, exactly? ...read more.

Middle

In addition to this, throughout the opening, a deliberate narrative technique used by McEwan is to apply questions to keep the reader's interest, delaying the provision of information about what was wrong. The narrator asks himself "What was Clarissa doing?...What were we running towards?" , which slows the pace and changes to what the other characters were doing, for example, how his partner Clarissa and the other characters arrived at the scene of emergency. This almost acts as a freeze frame, causing further tension to build up, drawing the reader back into the novel. Not only does this encourage the reader to focus on what's actually happening, but also at the same time, it provides an opportunity for the narrator to introduce a bigger picture of the characters. In contrast, 'Knowledge of Angels' is unique in the way that the presence of the author is known throughout. The reader is immediately thrown into a very abrupt beginning, and put in a position to obey the writer. She does this by using extremely descriptive text rather than allowing the reader to imagine his or her own island as a setting for the novel. ...read more.

Conclusion

I think this was down to the fact that the narrator of the book withholds vital information from the reader in order to create anxiety from within, "I'm holding back the information". Although the narrator builds up the tension that leads to this catastrophe, he doesn't inform the reader of what is install for him and the other characters, but most importantly, doesn't say what the actual emergency that caused five men to run to, was until the very last minute. I found that this caused me to quicken my pace of reading in order to find out what had happened, proving it to be more effective. In conclusion, I think that the introductions to the novels 'Enduring Love' and 'Knowledge of Angels' proved to be effective in that they grasped the attention of and managed to maintain the interest of the reader. In both cases, I'm sure the majority of readers would want to read on after reading these first chapters. They were interesting as openings as both authors adopted several literary techniques, which only added to their ability to captivate the reader's imagination, and overall they were definitely effective as the beginnings of novels. Joanna Lowe Page 1 English Literature ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Ian McEwan section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Ian McEwan essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    The English Patient

    5 star(s)

    He takes his gun and threatens to kill the English patient, whom he sees as a symbol of the West. Kip does not kill Almasy, but takes off on his motorcycle, leaving the villa forever. Years later, he is a doctor in India with a family of his own.

  2. Compare and contrast the ways in which the writers of 'Frankenstein' and 'The Picture ...

    Shelley shows him as considering himself the 'murderer or William, of Justine, and of Clerval' via his 'murderous machinations'29. However, Shelley never depicts him as repentant for his transgressions towards the monster: he claims himself to be 'more miserable than man ever was before'30 and certainly repents the pain that

  1. Structure of the Novel The Mayor of the Casterbridge

    her death; XX-XXX - from Lucetta's entrance until her marriage to Farfrae; XXI-XL - from Henchard's bankruptcy until Lucetta's death; and XLI-XLV - from Newson's appearance until Henchard's death. Each section develops an important link to Henchard's downfall. Each part opens with Henchard asserting the strength of his character and ends with Henchard's strength being undercut.

  2. Thrill of the Kill Comparative Essay. Imagine being on a deserted island with ...

    Zaroff also uses his mind a lot more than the boys who completely lose their sense of reason once they become entranced by the hunt. In a sense, Zaroff is the more terrifying one because he reasons that it is completely acceptable to kill humans, whereas the boys mindlessly kill.

  1. Wuthering Heights Setting

    An example of locks and keys found in places, such as Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange is the gate leading into Wuthering Heights. This gate reflects the story of Wuthering Heights and is always locked when Lockwood is learning of the history of Heathcliff.

  2. Consider the presentation of characters, settings and narrative in chapter 1 of Enduring Love ...

    Although they assume the same position as the main male roles, we can instead draw more similarities between Jed Parry and Heathcliff. Despite contrasting appearances and entirely different morals (Heathcliff throws a bible into the stables whilst Jed worships the same book)

  1. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost and If Sleep and ...

    It is observable that in Tennyson's abstract of this section {Memoir, II. 421) the notion of a general re-awakening disappears. Indeed the whole thought of the section was foreign to his habitual mode of imagining the state after death. However, the critic notices several figures of speech which should plead for the abovementioned idea.

  2. Explore the corruption of morality and its consequences within the texts of Othello, The ...

    Through religion, Jed considers that he could manipulate Joe?s feelings through the ?the purpose? [of] Christ that is in you and that is you.? However, in ?The Picture of Dorian Gray?, it could be argued that Henry seems to purposely challenge Victorian values.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work