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Meet John Cromer - 'one of the most original comic creations in recent fiction' - and discover one of the great overlooked adventures in literature. Plenty can be daunting, but in the spirit of compromise this feast of a novel is served on a succession of small plates, each portion providing an adult's daily intake of literary nourishment in episodes that are variously sweet and sour. For starters there's the time John spends living out of his beloved Mini in 1970s Cambridge, before settling into a life of qualified independence. The whole banquet is accompanied by lashings of John's ideas about the Lady Godiva of militant twelfth-century Hindu poetry, about the eroticism of fine glassware, the omnipresence of the number 108 and the undeclared war between wheelchairs and carpet tiles. 'Caret' is a long book but not a heavy one, its prose triple-whipped to guarantee a light and creamy texture.