BOOKS / Recommended

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The Independent Culture
The Death of Napoleon by Simon Leys, tr. Patricia Clancy, Quartet pounds 12.95. The Emperor returns to Europe and tries to regain his former glory. A witty and inspired short novel which this week won the Independent Foreign Fiction Award for 1992. Extract and profile, page 31.

Stalin's Nose by Rory Maclean, HarperCollins pounds 14.99. A funny and touching account of travels in eastern Europe. Review by Jan Morris, 16 May.

Outerbridge Reach by Robert Stone, Deutsch pounds 14.99. The grand, adventurous tale of a man lost at sea. Interview by Scott Bradfield, 23 May.

The Fugitive by Pramoedya Ananta Toer, Penguin pounds 6.99. Remarkable allegory about modern Indonesian history by a banned writer. Review by Ziauddin Sardar, 30 May.

Quartered Safe Out Here by George MacDonald Fraser, Harvill pounds 16. Strong and sprightly memoirs of wartime Burma. Review by Michael Fathers, 30 June.

Above the River by James Wright, Bloodaxe pounds 9.95. This acute and vulnerable collection is a fine memorial to the late American poet. Review by Lachlan Mackinnon, 11 July.

The Interior Castle by Jonathan Gathorne-Hardy, Sinclair-Stevenson pounds 25. An astute biography of Gerald Brenan and his passion for Spain. Review by David Gilmour, 18 July.

The Last Magician by Janette Turner Hospital, Virago pounds 14.99. The dazzling and elliptical story of buried secrets in Sydney. Review by Robert Winder, 17 July.