How to Survive the Age of Distraction
In the 20th century, all the nightmare-novels of the future imagined that books would be burnt. In the 21st century, our dystopias imagine a world where books are forgotten. To pluck just one, Gary Steynghart's novel Super Sad True Love Story describes a world where everybody is obsessed with their electronic Apparat - an even more omnivorous i-Phone with a flickering stream of shopping and reality shows and porn - and have somehow come to believe that the few remaining unread paper books let off a rank smell. The book on the book, it suggests, is closing.