What if your local coffee bar were secretly wholly owned and operated by the Devil? And what if he were using a demonically endowed TV clicker to eavesdrop on the thoughts of his patrons as they innocently sipped their cappuccinos, pawed their laptops and thumbed their magazines? Such a diabolic café is the setting for Nagel, Arnold Klein’s hilarious and devastating, but ultimately deeply moral, romp through the inner despairs and public futilities of contemporary Americans. By the time the Devil and his half-amused, half-indignant interlocutor have finished sounding the shallows of the customers’ brains, all representative types of mind and manners from the college freshman choosing his moronic courses to the investor picking his ungainful stocks, from punky teens to silver haired gourmands have been anatomized and excoriated with what readers of Klein’s previous volumes have come to recognize as his characteristic deftness, profundity and wit. Part comedy and ! part philosophical dialogue, Nagel is a wholly unique blend of observation, analysis and imaginative projection a work that, by scrupulous attention to the contemporary moment, divines the eternal significance of the lives we choose to lead and the world we choose make for ourselves.