August’s reading group: The Mysteries of Pittsburgh by Michael Chabon

We have come to know him as one of the finest novelists of our era, but this neglected book began his career with a bang. So this month, we go back to his future

The Mysteries of Pittsburgh by Michael Chabon has emerged from the hat and will be this month’s reading group choice. It’s a fascinating pick. Even if it weren’t interesting for its own sake, it would be worth reading because it’s the first novel from one of the finest writers of our era. I’m keen to return to the first appearance from the Pulitzer prize-winning author of Wonder Boys, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay and - doubters be damned – Telegraph Avenue. Was all that dazzling accomplishment on display in his debut, written when he was 23 and still a student at the University of California, Irvine?

If advances are anything to go by, ...