Cover Stories: Jenny Colgan; Alistair Cooke; Booker longlist

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The Independent Culture

* At the first Literary Salon at Shoreditch House, London, on Tuesday, Jenny Colgan revealed that she is working on a "secret book" that she will release under a pseudonym in September. "It's for all those people who loved books set in boarding schools as kids and wonder why nobody writes them any more," she said.

* BBC TV, radio and books join forces in November to celebrate the centenary of Alistair Cooke. A book, Reporting America, a collection of his work starting with his first Letter from America, is the centrepiece. Trivia for rock historians: John Byrne Cooke, Alistair's son, managed Janis Joplin.

Engage in the e-book experience without shelling out £400 courtesy of Wordsworth Editions. About 100 titles, classics and poetry, will be sold online for £1.75 up in Adobe format. Among them Jane Eyre, Great Expectations and Remembrance of Things Past, which will run to two e-volumes – very tiring to read on one's BlackBerry.

* The Man Booker longlist was good news and a big surprise for indies Verso and Tindal Street, publishers of John Berger's From A to X and Gaynor Arnold's Girl in a Blue Dress. Both hurriedly brought forward publication from September to early August just after the announcement.