A perfect book to keep beside the toilet, The Brick Reader (Coach House) is a collection of essays, interviews and reviews from Brick, the literary mag. There is something here for everyone interested in good writing, including two pieces by John Berger, a meditation on writing and nationality by Irish poet Eavan Boland, Victoria Glendinning on doing biography, and lots more. Choose your own favourites. The funny photographs are a bonus. Be warned: guests may disappear into the bathroom and not come out for hours. Edited by Linda Spalding and Michael Ondaatje.