Nick Hornby's ear for contemporary dialogue is so acute that it's an added pleasure to hear rather than read his latest novel, About A Boy (HarperCollins, 3hrs, pounds 8.99). What happens when single mother Susie comes up against predatory, cool male Will? Through the catalyst of Susie's lonely 12-year-old son Marcus, Will finds his attitude to life changing profoundly. Convincing and moving.
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I was surprised to find myself gripped by Simon Singh's Fermat's Last Theorem (HarperCollins, c 3hrs, pounds 8.99). Reader David Rentoul's evident fascination with the conundrum set up by the teasing French mathematician 300 years ago helps, but the real star is Singh, whose book puts across the romance of the discipline and the engaging wit and comradeship of the mathematical community.