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LONDON: Jane Lapotaire reads poems on transformation, Peter Abbs and Philip Wells read their own work at the Canal Cafe Theatre, Delamere Terrace, London W2; Mon 5, 8pm, pounds 5/pounds 2. 0171 289 6054

LEEDS: Chris Ryan reads from his new book Stand By, Stand By at Waterstones, 36-38 Albion Street; Mon 5, 7pm, pounds 2. 0113 242 0839

BIRMINGHAM: Karren Brady talks about her book United at Waterstones, 24-26 High Street; Thur 8 at 6.30pm pounds 1.50. 0121 633 4353

EDINBURGH: Shakespeare Workshop: 'Hamlet' and the Idea of the Moment includes readings and discussion; James Thin Bookshop, 53-59 South Bridge. Thur 8, 7pm. 0131 556 6743.

Scottish International presents a series of informal talks and readings at the Famous Grouse House, Venue no 34, 5 Chambers Street: Christina De Luca on Fri 9; Janice Galloway with David Stenhouse on Sat 10; Nigel Tranter on Sun 11; all 12noon, pounds 3.50. 0131 661 5687

Pride and Passion - a centenary exhibition of the life of Robert Burns at the Royal Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street. Continues until September 15, before transferring to the Dick Institute, Kilmarnock. 0131 225 7534