Four years after A Long Way Down, his droll, affecting novel about four would-be suicides, Nick Hornby is back. In Juliet, Naked, his new novel, Hornby returns to the territory his long-time fans will instantly recognize: obsession, fandom and popular music, the tropes that made his first two books, Fever Pitch and High Fidelity into bestsellers and him into a literary celebrity. Read more

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So here we are with the most hotly debated annual shortlist in the English-speaking books world – the final six books vying for the Man Booker Prize 2009.

What has it boiled down to?

Summerland by JM Coetzee

The Children’s Book by AS Byatt Read more

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What does the Man Booker Prize mean for established, perhaps even great writers, who have not become huge mainstream successes? Alan Hollinghurst, who famously takes many years to write a book, said it buys time to write. Read more

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