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A novel crafted from Custer’s Last Stand

The Removes. By Tatjana Soli. Sarah Crichton Books, 384 pages; $27. Get our daily newsletter Upgrade your inbox and get our Daily Dispatch and Editor’s Picks. Paul Manafort goes on trial The Vatican shows an overdue decisiveness on sexual abuse Taxes on tobacco, alcohol and sugar really do curb vice The venomous ideology of religious intolerance Why do people love “Love Island”? Why tariffs are bad taxes THE United States was days from its centennial when the Battle of the …

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Yan Lianke’s dark satire of modern China

The Day the Sun Died. By Yan Lianke. Translated by Carlos Rojas. Chatto & Windus; 352 pages; £14.99. To be published in America by Grove Press in December; $22. Get our daily newsletter Upgrade your inbox and get our Daily Dispatch and Editor’s Picks. Remembering Tessa Tennant, giant of green finance An acrimonious divorce from the EU looks increasingly likely for Britain How America’s TSA is watching travellers How the grotesque online culture wars fuel populism A tarnished victory for …

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The rise and fall of bees

Buzz: The Nature and Necessity of Bees. By Thor Hanson. Basic Books; 304 pages; $27. Icon Books; £16.99. Get our daily newsletter Upgrade your inbox and get our Daily Dispatch and Editor’s Picks. The most influential role in baseball may cease to exist How domestic violence affects the economy The rise and the rainfall of the Roman empire “Iceman” tells a primal story without words What is “shadowbanning”? Is it time to automate politicians? BEES are wasps that went vegetarian. …

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De Gaulle, model for Macron

De Gaulle. By Julian Jackson. Belknap Press; 928 pages; $39.95. Published in Britain as “A Certain Idea of France: The Life of Charles de Gaulle”; Allen Lane; £35. Get our daily newsletter Upgrade your inbox and get our Daily Dispatch and Editor’s Picks. An acrimonious divorce from the EU looks increasingly likely for Britain How America’s TSA is watching travellers How the grotesque online culture wars fuel populism A tarnished victory for Emmerson Mnangagwa in Zimbabwe The many lives of …

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George Sand’s unfinished legacy

IN 1876 the mayor of Nohant-Vic, a small village in the heart of France, reported the death of Amantine Lucile Aurore Dupin. With the names of her late husband and father duly noted, the record states that she was a baroness, “aged 71 years, without any known profession”. Yet a nom de plume—George Sand—appeared in parentheses. Other female writers of the late-18th and 19th century received similarly dismissive treatment. Jane Austen’s epitaph emphasised her “charity, devotion, faith and purity” and …

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Uniformity is the watchword for the new Elizabeth line

THE Elizabeth line, the latest addition to the London Underground, is a feat of engineering. When it gets rolling in December, it will stretch more than 60 miles from Reading and Heathrow in the west to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east. It required ten new stations and 26 miles of new tunnels; those tunnels were created by eight 1,000-tonne boring machines through some of the most densely populated urban space in the world. The £14.8bn ($19.5bn) project has …

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Rescuing Adam Smith from myth and misrepresentation

Adam Smith: Father of Economics. By Jesse Norman. Basic Books; 416 pages; $30. Published in Britain as “Adam Smith: What He Thought and Why it Matters” by Allen Lane; £25. Get our daily newsletter Upgrade your inbox and get our Daily Dispatch and Editor’s Picks. What is at stake in Zimbabwe’s election? Sam Brownback makes the right noises about religious liberty Under Donald Trump, more cops are acting as immigration-enforcement agents Australia’s Fairfax Media and Nine Entertainment will merge Loneliness …

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Pentti Sammallahti, Finland’s top photographer

UNDER a low sun, a frog with a thuggish expression swims alone in a pond, its black reflection a crisply outlined mirror image on the still water. It stares straight ahead; an eye-to-eye confrontation seems imminent. This sinister yet amusing picture was taken by Pentti Sammallahti, a 68-year-old Finnish photographer with an unusual status: he is at once feted and deliberately low-profile. His modest prices—prints start at €600 ($702)—are part of the explanation. Peter Fetterman, who exhibited Mr Sammallahti’s work …

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ABBA’s songs are an escapist treat in melancholy times

THERE is a scene in “Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again” in which Harry (Colin Firth) is snoozing through contract negotiations. They have been going on for 14 hours and, frankly, there’s somewhere else he would rather be. His interlocutors scold him: this deal could make his unspecified business the biggest in Europe! But Harry cares not. After some cheesy lines about the importance of family, he flees the boardroom and within moments is singing with old chums by the …

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Danny Fields and Seymour Stein, champions of punk, look back

NEITHER Seymour Stein nor Danny Fields can remember when they first met. “It seems like forever,” says Mr Stein, now 76, sitting with his daughter Mandy in the London headquarters of Warner Bros Records. “Was he friends with Mommy first or you first?” asks Mandy. “No, I knew him before your mother,” Mr Stein insists. “No,” Mr Fields, 78, says down the phone from New York. “I was friends with his wife, Linda.” In Mr Fields’s version, it was 1973 …

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