Like so many parents, novelist Ian McEwan was once roped into helping his son with his homework. The assignment was regarding one of McEwan’s own novels, and his son received a C+ for their mutual efforts. Everyone’s a critic!
McEwan spoke to the Daily Mail about his work adapting his work On Chesil Beach for the screen. Toward the end of the piece, the subject turned toward how often McEwan’s writing is assigned to students, and he shared that he’s none too sure about that, to be frank:
‘I always feel a little dubious about people being made to read my books,’ he says, especially if it’s his youngest son, Greg, who, a couple of years back, was obliged to write an A-level essay on Enduring Love.
‘Compelled to read his dad’s book – imagine. Poor guy,’ he says. ‘I confess I did give him a tutorial and told him what he should consider. I didn’t read his essay but it turned out his teacher disagreed fundamentally with what he said. I think he ended up with a C+.’
This apparently isn’t the first time he’s shared the anecdote. The Times added that, “At a 2012 literary festival McEwan said the teacher believed that the novel’s stalker ‘carried the authorial moral centre, whereas I thought he was a complete madman.’”
Bet Greg loves when his dad tells this story.