Recommended Books

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The Independent Culture
And When Did You Last See Your Father? by Blake Morrison, Granta, pounds 14.99. Exquisite, funny and moving memoir of the author's Dad, winner of the first Esquire- Waterstone's-Volvo Prize for non-fiction.

Marguerite Yourcenar by Josyane Savigneau, University of Chicago, pounds 19.95. Striking life of a great novelist, the first woman in the Academie Francaise. Review by Natasha Walter, 30 October.

United States by Gore Vidal, Andre Deutsch, pounds 25. 114 thought-provoking essays by a tremendous hater. Review by Godfrey Hodgson, 16 October.

Pronto by Elmore Leonard, Viking, pounds 14.99. A Miami bookie flees the Mafia. Wonderful. Review by Giles Smith, 16 October.

Martyr's Day by Michael Kelly, Macmillan, pounds 15.99. Sombre, eloquent odyssey from Baghdad to Kurdistan during the war. Review by Robert Winder, 15 October.

Fima by Amos Oz, Chatto, pounds 15.99. The life and loves of an Israeli firebrand. Winner of the Independent Foreign Fiction Award for August / September.