Cover Stories: Political bestseller; Cheetham's return; Lynda Lee-Potter novel

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The Independent Culture

The party conference season always finds publishers rushing to release offerings by or about politicians. But this year, perhaps the likeliest contender for bestsellerdom is a "memoir" due from Profile in November. The Curious Incident of the WMD in Iraq is in fact written by ace parodist Rohan Candappa, author of The Little Book of Stress. His latest endeavour, a book that "can easily be read in 45 minutes", is a memoir by "'a Prime Minister with Asperger's syndrome who thinks it is a good idea to launch a war in Iraq". One Alastair, "always full of good advice", tells the PM that "I should write something I would want to read myself." People with Asperger's ask numerous questions and often totally disregard the answers, while their own answers are frequently long, complicated - and totally inappropriate.

* Since he was sacked by Hachette from the Orion Group he founded, Anthony Cheetham has been a smiling tiger on the publishing circuit, waiting to pounce. Now Gail Rebuck, UK chief exec of Random House, has announced he is to take on an advisory role on both sides of the Atlantic. He will also acquire "a select number" of books for Hutchinson. All of which would be unremarkable were it not that Cheetham was fired by the then Random House US chief, Alberto Vitale, a little over a decade ago. He likened the experience to being "run over by a small Italian mouse".

* The news that Lynda Lee-Potter, star turn at the Daily Mail, is to write fiction will delight her many fans, and provide her many enemies with an opportunity to dip their pens in acid. For the journalist, whose only book so far has been a collection of non-fiction musings on class, is at work on a novel. "Commercial, middlebrow fiction, very much for her Daily Mail readership," is how agent John Beaton describes the project.

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