BOOK REVIEW / Recommended

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The Independent Culture
The Alienist by Caleb Carr, Little, Brown, pounds 16.99. A haunting, plausible thriller set in 19th-century New York. Review by Anthony Quinn, 6 August.

Testimonies by Patrick O'Brian, HarperCollins, pounds 14.99. Striking first fiction set in Snowdonia by the admired author of historical novels. Review by Godfrey Hodgson, 23 July

Evangelista's Fan by Rose Tremain, Sinclair-Stevenson, pounds 14.99. Wide-ranging and delicate collection of new stories. Review by Michele Roberts, 16 July

The Diaries of Sylvia Townsend Warner, Ed. Claire Harman, Chatto pounds 25. Riveting journal of a great and under- rated writer. Review by D J Taylor, 9 July.

The Politics of Dispossession by Edward Said, Chatto pounds 18. Admirable and topical set of essays on the victims of victims. Review by Robert Fisk, 16 July.

Made in America by Bill Bryson, Secker, pounds 15. Hilarious odyssey through America's language jungle. Review by Pete Davies, 8 July.

Stendhal by Jonathan Keates, Sinclair-Stevenson, pounds 20. A biography that transmits an infectious enthusiasm for the picaresque, promiscuous French novelist. Review by Lucasta Miller, 9 July.