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Books for Christmas

Finding beautiful books to give as presents used to be tricky. Not any longer. The arrival of e-books seemed to have propelled publishers into spending more thought and money on striking book covers. So walking into a well-stocked bookstore these days is no longer only a treat for your mind but a feast for your eyes as well. The bookshops are brimming with temptations: colourful, intelligent, artistic even tactile book covers. Combine that with some clever content and you’re in gift heaven. If there ever was a place you could kill off that Christmas shopping list with one stab, it’s in a bookshop.

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Andrew Solomon on Literature and Medicine

Wanted to share with you this thought-provoking article by Andrew Solomon (lecturer on psychology and politics and author of award winning Far From the Tree) about medicine and literature, where he rejoices the surge in interest in books discussing medicine. I couldn’t agree more. I’ve read and reviewed two of the books he discusses: Henry Marsh’s Do No Harm and Atul Gawande’s Being Mortal Truly life-changing reads!

Literature About Medicine May Be All That Can Save Us by Andrew Solomon

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The Romanovs and Simon Sebag Montefiore at 5×15

I was enthralled by historian Simon Sebag Montefiore’s (of the bestselling biography Jerusalem) talk about his his latest book The Romanovs at 5×15 in Notting Hill last night. Three-hundred years of Russian tsars, murders, betrayals, wars, romance and lots and lots of sex, and Sebag Montefiore knows how to tell a good story. Not to be missed!

The Guardian – review of The Romanovs

The Telegraph – review of The Romanovs

If you live in London, you might want to look into 5×15’s excellent program of author talks.