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05 December 2013

Books of the year

 
Michael WalshSara Paretsky is American’s answer to P.D. James, with added violence. Her private eye, V.I. Warshawski, who comfortingly grows old alongside her readers, is so skilfully embedded in her landscape that I once drove through Chicago guided by a friend solely on her knowledge of the Warshawski oeuvre. Critical Mass (Hodder & Stoughton, 480pp, £13.99; Tablet price £12.60) is a heady mixture of crack cocaine and nuclear physics, not to mention Nobel Prizes and internet hacking by the security services. Christopher HowseMary Douglas, a great anthropologist, died in 2007, and Richard Fardon has edited some of her thought-provoking papers as A Very Personal Method (Sage, 328pp, £29.99; Tablet price £27). In one she shows that hierarchies (such as th




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