The idea of the story [The Library of Babel] is persistently appropriated and repurposed, some even postulating a VHS version. But I suspect most take it as a given that the fantastic realm envisioned by this fiction is a logical impossibility, a metaphysical experiment that no earthly physic could realize, created by an author who viewed mathematics as a branch of fantastic literature. Now, an American math professor has released a tome which extrapolates the rules articulated into the story to provide an actual plan for the library.
From Edwin Abbott’s Flatland, Douglas Adams’s The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and Isaac Asimov’s Caves of Steel to Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, Stendhal’s The Red and the Black, and Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace, via Haruki Murakami’s The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Georges Perec’s Life A User’s Manual, and Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials, there does not seem to be an author or a book that Isabella Kratynski has not read, written about in the delightfully labyrinthine Magnificent Octopus (“Inky and Tentacled”!), or is about to read.