People sometimes ask me what I’m reading. Sometimes they don’t ask and I tell them anyway. Especially if we’re on a long bus ride together.
That’s right, it’s 600 pages of random numbers! Here’s an excerpt (caution: spoilers):
Still, isn’t £62 a little steep for a book filled with random numbers? I mean, that’s almost $97 in actual money. If I want some random numbers, can’t I just make them up on my own? Check it out:
1 3 9 8 4 — Oh wait, that’s my address when I was growing up in Lakewood, Ohio.
Let’s try again:
2 8 6 5 — Shoot. That’s the beginning of my social security number.
I know I can do this!
7, um, 5, um, um, let’s go with 2, then um 3, and 3, 3, 3, 3, 3, 3 — Damn! Got stuck in a rut.
This is obviously more difficult than it looks. Best to leave your random number generating to the professionals.
Here are some of the best of the Amazon comments on AMRD:
Rest assured that I shall not divulge precisely what was to transpire upon that final page, but I can tell you that the conclusion left me open-mouthed and goggle-eyed with bemusement. Had I just encountered a profound statement about the aleatoric structure of the universe and the fleeting nature of life? Was the entire final page the result of a perversely improbable misprint? Or had the author simply been permitted to watch one David Lynch film too many? Ultimately, this is a work that raises more questions than it has answers to.
Maybe this is what passed for random in 2001! by todays standards this is positivly signposted. i read it to my 5 yr old adopted indian boychild and he was able to chant along with me by the third page.
I myself have written a book of numbers so random they have been known to cause insanity, temporary blindness, unexplained homosexuality and even hiccuping. i am not able to write any passages here, for fear weak minds might stumble upon it.
You’d think that a book priced this high would have gone through a rigorous editing and review process, but apparently not. The book is littered with typos (“83252” instead of “83522” – seriously? Come ON!) and on page 153 the number 9 is missing entirely.
This book of random numbers might be very good for the younger generation with their hip hop music. Call me old fashioned but I prefer my numbers to be in a traditional sequential order, some people may find that predictable I grant you but at least there a clear beginning and end.
. . . a wonderful testament to man’s ability to think the unthinkerable.
As for me, this amazing book has inspired me to write a sequel consisting of a million random letters. I shall call it: Twilight.