Elena Ferrante’s essay collection is an exploration of the delights and constraints of form

The best, and the not-so-great, new fiction to read this month

Book reviews are not the preserve of the literary dilettantes — they have real power

A new history of Byzantium reveals the inner workings of a late antique empire

The brilliant story of a Francis Bacon exhibition in Moscow

TV adaptations have masked the complexity and skill of Agatha Christie

Writers who forget bourgeois aspiration lose a dimension

A failed American Psycho for the PornHub generation

Ananyo Bhattacharya offers an ambitious biography of a genius who defied categorisation in life and death