Books: In the lists

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The Independent Culture
More about Zlata's Diary, still sitting pretty at No 1 despite charges - first made in America - that this child's-eye view of war-ravaged Sarajevo might not be entirely, well, authentic. A cool denial from the British publisher, who had taken the trouble to check its translation against the Serbo-Croat original. Serbo-Croat? But of course; Viking has an editor fluent in the language. At a time when some British publishers seem not to employ editors who can read and write even English, this is seriously impressive.

And three cheers for the irredeemably naff Dr Hessayon, who trounces the competition in our gardening bestsellers list. The faultlessly tasteful Anna Pavord sneaks in at No 10, but where are those horticultural aristocrats - Penelope Hobhouse, Beth Chatto, Christopher Lloyd, et al? Discarded under the coffee table, probably. Great Dixter and Kiftsgate are fine for dormant season inspiration, but once spring has sprung and the garden centre tills are ringing, what we really want, it seems, are no-nonsense, step- by-step instructions about how to bed out our crimson begonias.

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