I was shopping for books when I found one that intrigued me.

The story: A man buys a book and reads it, only to find that the pages are misprinted. So he returns it to the store, and gets a new copy.

The new book is an entirely different story. He goes in search of the previous story, to find out what happens.

Any idea what book this is, or its author? I think it's a relatively new book(published post 2010).

  • I don't have a copy to check this out against but when I read your question I immediately though of Greg Bear's City at the End of Time. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/City_at_the_End_of_Time
    – Jackson
    Commented Jul 20, 2015 at 11:33
  • The answer isn't House of Leaves, although the question immediately reminded me of that book.
    – aroth
    Commented Jul 21, 2015 at 14:10

1 Answer 1


This sounds like If on a Winter's Night A Traveller by Italo Calvino.

I wasn't sure if it qualified as SF&F, but it is mentioned on isfdb.

Here's wikipedia's synopsis ("traveler" in the US)

If on a winter's night a traveler (Italian: Se una notte d'inverno un viaggiatore) is a 1979 novel by the Italian postmodernist writer Italo Calvino. The narrative, in the form of a frame story, is about the reader trying to read a book called If on a winter's night a traveler. Each chapter is divided into two sections. The first section of each chapter is in second person, and describes the process the reader goes through to attempt to read the next chapter of the book he is reading. The second half is the first part of a new book that the reader ("you") finds. The second half is always about something different from the previous ones and the ending is never explained. The book was published in an English translation by William Weaver in 1981.

The books begins with what appears to be If on a winter's night a traveller, but chapter 2 continues in the second person.

...Wait a minute! Look at the page number. Damn! From page 32 you've gone back to page 17! What you thought was a stylistic subtlety on the author's part is simply a printer's mistake: they have inserted the same pages twice.

You exchange the book for another copy.

Then from the very first page you realize that the novel you are holding has nothing to do with the one you were reading yesterday.

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