Peter – Yes, Tom Montag’s books are wonderful. As a professional printer, he has the kind of experience that probably all of us who aspire to print publication should have as a regular part of our apprenticeship.
Tristram Shandy is certainly a good example of a self-reflexive book. A little bit of that goes a long way, though, IMO.
Lucy – I’m glad you liked this. I used to be more cerebral, but I began to bore myself and had to stop.
Your anecdote about the eight-year-old is very apropos. Both as a writer and as a reader I aspire to the freshness and simplicity I had at the age of eight, when I first began reading longer books on my own. I can still remember how amazing that felt.