Penguin steak, curried sprouts and delicious krill

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The Independent Online
AS WE enter the final stages of Christmas shopping, you may like to have this list of this year's 10 best-selling Christmas books - not counting the ones about dogs and cats]

Christmas for One Delia Smith (Sage & Onion, pounds 12.99). The ideal cookbook if you're all alone on Christmas Day, and there's nobody you'd care to see or meet. If you're a traditionalist, the 'Roast Turkey Leg for One' will see you through lunch, with instructions on how to make bread sauce from a single bread roll. If you're more ambitious, you might like to try 'Scrooge Pie', made from last year's leftover Christmas lunch]

I, Thatcher Margaret Thatcher (HarpyCollins, pounds 19.99). Every year there has to be a book that everyone gives each other and nobody reads. Last year it was Around the World in Eighty Days and before that it was . . . let me see, was that the year of the last Clive James memoir? Anyway, this year it's I, Thatcher, and if you really want to find out what happened in the Eighties during the period of Tory rule, you'd probably be better off reading Around the World in Eighty Days.

Notes and Queries about Clive Anderson Clive Anderson (Bar Society Press, pounds 12.99). There must have been thousands of idle questions one has asked oneself about Clive Anderson over the years. Questions such as: 'How would you like to be defended in court by a man who can't stop fidgeting, or complete a sentence?' Or 'Why, when he asks for ideas for styles of improvisation in Whose Line Is It Anyway?, and people shout out 'Fellini]' or 'Royal Shakespeare Company]', why does Clive Anderson always say 'Laurel and Hardy, OK, let's try that', when you haven't heard anyone shout it?' Now at last the answers to all those questions are safely locked up in one volume.

Christmas Leftovers For One Delia Smith (Lemon Grass Press, pounds 17.99). One of the great leftover cookbooks of all time, or at least of Boxing Day, this revives such great dishes as Brussels Sprout Flan, Curried Brussels Sprout, Stuffing a la King, Rechauffe de Sprout de Bruxelles, and Bread Sauce Cake. In this new edition, Delia Smith includes her own recipe for Sprout Sorbet.

Annus Horribilis II HM The Queen (HMSO, pounds 20.20). This best-seller by the Queen is an account of her awful year in 1993, and is a follow-up to her previous book, Annus Horribilis. In fact, there was no previous book called Annus Horribilis, so to some extent this is a bit of a marketing exercise, but on the other hand it is something of a first to have a sequel to a book that never existed, so hats off to the old girl, especially as it is the first book in England to have its title in Latin since the last book about Status Quo (Status Quo).

The Big Freezer Cook Book David Attenborough (BBC Enterprises, pounds 16.99). Brilliant ideas about how to cook those leftover penguin steaks, albatross wings, and so on. Also the first reliable round-up of things to do with krill.

Newman and Baddiel, The World Tour 1993 Official Souvenir Programme Rob Newman and David Baddiel (Newman and Baddiel and Harry Thompson Publishing Company, pounds 15). This is the first time for a long time that a theatre programme has got into the best-

seller list. On the other hand, it is a long time since anyone was this funny. Or not, as the case may be. On the other hand, maybe the young folk are buying it just to annoy the old folk. On the other hand, nobody thought Hitler was funny when he first came on the scene. On the other hand, maybe in the old days all the old folk annoyed everyone by saying how funny Tommy Handley was, and this is the young people's revenge. On the other hand . . .

Rebecca: The Cook Book Delia Smith, after Daphne du Maurier (Resurrection Press, pounds 14.99). Delia Smith's brilliant sequel to Rebecca. A mouth-watering sequence of Mrs de Winter's menus. The Jamaica Inn cocktail will have you on your back]

The Old Architect of Lochnagar HRH The Prince of Wales (Alternative Royal Press, pounds 15.99). An entrancing tale about a chieftain with second sight who gets all the bothies on his estate redesigned along traditional lines]

The Book of Penguin Interviews David Attenborough (BBC Enterprises, pounds 16.99). It's tedious down there in the Antarctic, says David Attenborough. A man can go off his head in those snowy wastes. First he gets filmed among the penguins. Then he starts talking to the penguins. Finally he begins to think he is a penguin. This book tells us what he thought the penguins said back to him . . .