Zadie Smith

'Every word looked up, every winding footnote followed, every heart-and brain-stretching concept, they all help break the rhythm of thoughtlessness.'

Don DeLillo

'Infinity. This is the subject of David Wallace’s book on the mathematics, the philosophy and the history of a vast, beautiful, abstract concept.'

Michael Pietsch

'We communicated through letters. And through a form of communication that I thought of as a Dave speciality, the phone message left on the office answering machine hours after everyone had departed.'

Colin Harrison

'Dave explored that huge luxury ship, inspecting its many restaurants and gaming rooms and lounges, all twelve decks and 1,374 passengers, their acres of horrifying flesh soon frying in the sun.'

Gerry Howard

'At twenty-four when our paths crossed, he was painfully deferential, totally unworldly, woefully underdressed, but you knew that he possessed a formidable, even staggering talent and intellect.'

Bonnie Nadell

'In order to write, David couldn’t be in the public eye and still function. It was simply too hard for him. David didn’t have the armour most of us develop to survive in the world.'

Amy Wallace-Havens

'David loved being a writer, not so that he could dazzle us with the glorious arias of his intellect, but so that he could take us with him as he questioned what most of us don’t bother to question.'


'Athenians, in the main, are taut and deep brown and much taller than I imagined. From the shade in the cafe, I can get a good look at them down at the shore.'

Francis Plug Attends A John Banville Reading

'I too was drinking, having helped myself to a bottle of white from the complimentary drinks table. I’d placed this bottle on the Current Affairs shelving to the right of my seat.'

Excessive Innovation and the Anxiety of Influence

'Most people have an ear for the best new bits of language they come across – a better or richer or just smarter-sounding way of expressing ideas which are anyway always slightly beyond language’s grasp.'