On page 42 of Michel Houellebecq’s darkly comic masterpiece: “We see it among the intellectuals, politicians, and journalists of the 1930s, all of whom were convinced that Hitler would ‘come to see reason.’ It may well be impossible for people who have lived and prospered under a given social system to imagine the point of view of those who feel it offers them nothing, and who can contemplate its destruction without any particular dismay.”

That was what happened this year. Great book. Highly recommended. Lucid, propulsive translation by Lorin Stein. At Powells.