Hello everyone, and welcome back to Thrifty Thursdays!
The rules are simple and are as follows:
1. Each week’s link-up will be posted on Thursday.
2. Post or talk about a book you found used (preferably in a book store or thrift shop).
3. The book must cost less than $5.
4. Be sure to return for the link-up! Weird or strange books are preferred.
Ideally, we all would be exploring authors, books, and genres that we never would have considered otherwise. Some of us may find new favorites. Others may just find some laughs. Either way, we’d be supporting independent booksellers who are the backbone of what we do as bloggers. Of course, these books cost money, and posting each week isn’t required, though you’re certainly welcome to do so. An interesting possibility down the line may be picking a subject or genre and trying to find the oddest possible title.
My pick for this week?
C by Tom McCarthy
Total saved thus far compared to new prices: $59.61.
Where did I get it? Foggy Paws Outlet, a long-time eBay seller of books, cds, and other media. Again, with life being what it is, it’s been a bit easier to browse eBay for interesting books and purchase from independent sellers. Prices can be really good, and it’s nice to know used books are saved from trash heap.
C is also a book from a list called Experimental Novels That Everyone Should Read that caught my attention and gave me some leads to look into strange books.
Again, what had first drawn my attention was the strange cover. The description from FlavorWire only brought me in further:
McCarthy’s second novel is gorgeous and devastating, a search for patterns in the phenomenal world and a warning against the same; a book of just-missed connections, wireless communication and full-on joy. As Jennifer Egan wrote, “C is a rigorous inquiry into the meaning of meaning: our need to find it in the world around us and communicate it to one another; our methods for doing so; the hubs and networks and skeins of interaction that result. Gone is the minimalist restraint he employed in Remainder; here, he fuses a Pynchonesque revelry in signs and codes with the lush psychedelics of William Burroughs to create an intellectually provocative novel that unfurls like a brooding, phosphorescent dream.”
I’m actually interested to look into Remainder as well, since minimalism can be really interesting in its way. The thing is, though, this description doesn’t tell us anything about the plot as it’s very vague, so we’ll turn to Amazon once again:
Opening in England at the turn of the twentieth century, C is the story of Serge Carrefax, whose father experiments with wireless communication while running a school for deaf children. Serge grows up amid the noise and silence with his brilliant but troubled older sister, Sophie: an intense sibling relationship that haunts him as he heads off into an equally troubled larger world. As Serge goes from a Bohemian spa to the skies of World War I, and from a German prison camp into the tombs of Egypt, we follow his life through the tumultuous course of the nascent modern era. Tom McCarthy—acclaimed author of Remainder—has created a truly singular character, and a world that sparkles with historical breadth and postmodern originality.
Now we’re talking. Wireless communication and deaf children, sibling rivalry, World War I, prison camps, Egypt… Throw in some psychedelics and finding meaning, and I’m interested how McCarthy can really bring these things together in a way that doesn’t seem gimmicky. Let’s see how it goes.
What have you picked up recently?