C, Paperback Book
4 out of 5 (1 rating)


C follows the short, intense life of Serge Carrefax, a man who - as his name suggests - surges into the electric modernity of the early twentieth century, transfixed by the technologies that will obliterate him.

Born to the sound of one of the very earliest experimental wireless stations, Serge finds himself steeped in a weird world of transmissions, whose very air seems filled with cryptic and poetic signals of all kinds.

What follows is a stunning tour de force in which the eerily idyllic settings of pre-war Europe give way to the exhilarating flight-paths of the frontline aeroplane radio operator, then the prison camps of Germany, the drug-fuelled London of the roaring twenties and, finally, the ancient tombs of Egypt.

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize.


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At times, this book dragged me along like a page-turner (it certainly kept me hooked throughout an 8-hour train journey), yet at other times it was a really tough read, dare I say it, a bit of a chore. Most sections needed reading a couple of times to try to understand them properly. However, on the whole, it was worth it. Multi-layered, often confusing and opaque, I had to read it more like an A-level study, but in tackling it in this way, I got a lot more out of it. I would not say that this book would be for everyone, which is why I have hesitated from giving it 5 stars, but for those who like a challenge and like to work hard to appreciate a book, do give it a try.

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