British writer Tom McCarthy’s novel C provided me with my most ecstatic book experience of the past year. This ecstasy didn’t come from reading the book but from buying it. I purchased my copy at a very fine independent bookstore in Boston, where the young, cerebral-looking woman behind the counter nodded knowingly. “This,” she said in a quiet voice meant only for me, “is supposed to be really good. Really good.” I nodded and we smiled at each other, and I suspect she was thinking...
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