'The book is like the spoon: once invented, it cannot be
bettered' - Umberto Eco.
These days it is impossible to get away from discussions of
whether the book will survive the digital revolution. Blogs, tweets
and newspaper articles on the subject appear daily, many of them
repetitive, most of them admitting ignorance of the future. Amidst
the twittering, the thoughts of Jean-Claude Carrière and Umberto
Eco come as a breath of fresh air.
This thought-provoking book takes the form of a conversation in
which Carrière and Eco discuss everything from how to define the
first book to what is happening to knowledge now that infinite
amounts of information are available at the click of a mouse.
En route there are delightful digressions into personal
anecdote. We find out about Eco's first computer and the book
Carrière is most sad to have sold. And while, as Carrière says, the
one certain thing about the future is that it is unpredictable, it
is clear from this conversation that, in some form or other, the
book will survive.