Ian McEwan is the author most recently of On Chesil Beach. (March 2009)

On John Updike

John Updike, Massachusetts, 1984; photographs by Dominique Nabokov
In his autobiography Self-Consciousness, a “big-bellied Lutheran God” within the young John Updike looked on in contempt as he struggled to give up cigarettes. Many years later the older Updike, now giving up on alcohol, coffee, and salt, put into the mouth of that God the words of Frederick the …