I decided to start doing Friday Flashbacks in case you missed some early posts the first time around. You're busy; I understand.
What: Illustrious figures from the 20th century participate in an epic tennis tournament. This book gives the play-by-play, both on court and off, in a long string of inside jokes. The more you know about the participants, the funnier the book is. A few of the "players": Monet, Twain, Chaplin, Earhart, Benchley, Garbo, and Arendt.
Comparable to: Even though its subtitle is "A Novel of the 20th Century," Clarke's book is really more of a novelty collection, along the lines of Schott's Miscellany or John Hodgman's The Areas of My Expertise.
Representative quote: "Nijinsky continues to look fabulous, although after the match he described himself as 'The Supreme Being' and offered to describe how he created the world. Friends say this is not a good sign."
You might not like it if: It seems too gimmicky for you.
How to get it: Buy it or borrow it. I saw a copy in a used bookstore just this past weekend.
Connection to previous Wreckage: In the book, Alfred Hitchcock makes an appearance on Day 2 and is described as "the slightly eerie Fred Hitchcock." He first appeared on this blog in "Rec. #5: Rope." I did not use the word "eerie" in my post.
[Originally posted 1/11/11.]