Atonement Part 1, Chapter 2 Summary

Ian McEwan

Part 1, Chapter 2 Summary

Cecilia Tallis has come home from school for the summer, and the weeks since finals ended have been filled with inactivity. Generally she is “bored and comfortable,” but today she is desperate for a cigarette and for something to happen. As she passes through the grounds, she sees Robbie Turner assiduously working on the landscaping. Robbie is a childhood friend, someone she has known since she was seven and a fellow university student, but she avoids passing too near to him. Though she could participate in Briony’s play, she does not, knowing it will end tragically because no one can live up to her sister's great expectations. She also rejects visiting her mother, as her mother is not interested in speaking with her.

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(The entire section is 704 words.)