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Summer is a great time to catch up on reading if you've got time off

Issue No. 1861

Family Matters
by Rohinton Mistry (£7.99)

Set in Bombay, this novel tells the story of an Indian family riven by social tensions that are the result of lost loves, missed opportunities and the constraints of social etiquette.

Mistry's previous novel A Fine Balance (£7.99) is also a must, providing an all-encompassing picture of Indian society and its divisions.


Life of Pi
by Yann Martel (£6.99)

An outlandish tale of a boy stuck for months on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger. Don't let that put you off. A well spun yarn, this book engages you in a debate about the nature of animals and our relationship to them.


Spies
by Michael Frayn (£6.99)

Brilliant novel that captures memories of childhood and the atmosphere of Britain at the time of the Second World War.

Also worth reading is Frayn's earlier novel Headlong (£6.99), a fascinating story of the history of a painting by Bruegel.


Web of Deceit
by Mark Curtis (£7.99)

If you want an easy to read, compelling low down on the crimes of the British state around the world-from Malaya to Afghanistan-then this is the book to read.


The Visit of the Royal Physician
by Per Enquist (£6.99)

A moving novel, set in late 18th century Denmark, based on real historical events and figures. It is a love story, but it is also about the battle between enlightenment and feudal barbarity.


Path to the Spiders' Nests
by Italo Calvino (£5.99)

The Twenty Three Days of the City of Alba
by Beppe Fenoglio (£9.99)

Both stories deal with experience of the partisan resistance to fascism in Italy in the Second World War, and explore the choices that people were forced to make.

Also available is The Abruzzo Trilogy by Ignazio Silone (£12.99), which includes the novels Bread and Wine, Seed Beneath the Snow and Silone's brilliant anti-fascist story Fontamara.


Brick Lane
by Monica Ali (£12.99)

This is a moving and compassionate novel of the life of a Bangladeshi woman and her sister. It paints an unforgettable picture of the diversity of characters in east London's Tower Hamlets.


Fingersmith
by Sarah Waters (£7.99)

Gripping novel set in 19th century Britain that touches on hypocrisy surrounding class, crime and sexuality in the Victorian era.


The Mineral Palace
by Heidi Julavits (£6.99)

A beautifully written novel about a woman yearning for personal and sexual freedom against the backdrop of the repressive atmosphere of small-town America in the 1930s.


We Did Nothing
by Linda Polman (£12.99)

Reveals some of the reality behind the rhetoric about independent United Nations intervention in Somalia, Haiti and elsewhere. Polman says that UN resolutions are like hot dogs-if you knew how they're made you wouldn't want to eat them!


Six Easy Pieces
by Walter Mosley (£12)

Perfect holiday reading. Six short stories starring Easy Rawlins set in the early 1960s. Acutely perceptive about working class and black people's lives as the civil rights movement and Vietnam War are looming.


War Talk
by Arundhati Roy (£8)

New collection of essays by the former Booker prizewinner. Passionate, committed and a searing indictment of capitalism, imperialism and war.

Bookmarks the socialist bookshop 1 Bloomsbury Street, London WC1B 3QE 020 7637 1848 www.bookmarks.uk.com


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Article information

Reviews
Sat 26 Jul 2003, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1861
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