The advantage of a sleepless toddler is perhaps the unexpected reading opportunity - so started and finished On Chesil Beach between 4-something and almost-7 this morning.
It's a short book (166 pages) and given the apparently small focus of the narrative - a young couple on their wedding night in 1962, both virgins, both nervous - it's surprisingly gripping. This is perhaps a measure (perhaps intended) of the author's accomplishment, as is a hinted-at matter in her background which he confidently leaves un-explicated.
I can't help wondering if the title is also intended to be a reminder of the poem that lies, un-named, like the subject of a riddle, at the heart of the both the plot and themes of his last work, Saturday.
Is this kind of business a compliment to the reader's intelligence, or just a smug re-working of Mornington Crescent? I don't know, but I can see how tempting it is.