Review: Brock Clarke’s ‘The Happiest People in the World’

January 3, 2015 11:47 PM

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Review: Brock Clarke’s ‘The Happiest People in the World’

Only the most intrepid or giddy readers persist in the search for a great new comic novel. We know it must be out there, somewhere, like Bigfoot. Every few months, an excited alarm is raised in the forest of literary fiction; we rush to inspect the spoor. Thurber? Amis? Hmm. … Funny, but not really hilarious. The track is inconclusive. The search goes on.

Rumors about Brock Clarke’s new book, The Happiest People in the World, drove us weary explorers into fits of sniggering anticipation. This could be it. Clarke, an English professor at Bowdoin College, creates books that taste like delicious cuts of absurdity marbled with erudition. In 2007, he wrot...

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