"Nutshell" is a novel written by the English author Ian McEwan. The book was published in 2016.
"Nutshell" can be considered as a modern reinterpretation of Shakespeare's Hamlet.
In the novel by Ian McEwan, in fact, the protagonist assists in the planning and implementation of the murder of Father John by his mother Trudy and uncle Claude.
The novel is very interesting from the stylistic point of view, in fact, the protagonist and narrative voice of the novel is the fetus brought in the womb by Trudy, which then has a privileged point of view on the events, especially with regard to the conspiracy of the two lovers .
The narrator's way of expressing himself is almost omniscient: although the child is not yet born, he seems to be aware of all human logic. In fact, his voice is anything but naive, rather he expresses himself with lucidity and in an even sophisticated manner, he is able to grasp details about life and its surroundings, reasoning about "life after birth" and trying to frame the subjects involved in the conspiracy.
The fetus studies through the few means available to the world around him, the people around him, questions the choices of others, his identity and his potential, the vision he has of the world is therefore inevitably a bit narcissistic: it feels decisive in history, eager to take part in events, when in reality it does nothing but suffer the actions of others. There are also many issues that resume the Shakespearean work: revenge, maternal love, betrayal, identity.
The language is refined and ironic, despite the modern revision of a tragedy.