‘The City’, by Tony Norfield

Banking as seen from the belly of the beast

Front cover of 'The Wood for the Trees', by Richard Fortey

‘The Wood for the Trees’, by Richard Fortey

An erudite and resolutely empirical portrait of the author’s four-acre woodland. Review by Melissa Harrison

‘Science, the State, and the City’, by Geoffrey Owen and Michael Hopkins

A study of British biotechnology shows how belief in imminent success was fuelled by techno-scientific hype. Review by David Edgerton

‘The Black Prince of Florence’, by Catherine Fletcher

A vivid history shows how illegitimacy loomed larger than race in Renaissance Florence. Review by Mathew Lyons

‘Writing the Thames’, by Christina Hardyment

‘Writing the Thames’, by Christina Hardyment

A compendium of literary responses to the Thames. Review by Suzi Feay

Review: ‘Taxing the Rich’, by Kenneth Scheve and David Stasavage

Making the rich pay their fair share

‘The Oracle of Oil’, by Mason Inman

A biography of the scientist who predicted that oil production would soon start falling. Review by Ed Crooks

Black Wind, White Snow: The Rise of Russia’s New Nationalism, by Charles Clover

‘Black Wind, White Snow’, by Charles Clover

How a theory of Russian history that rejects the west came to inspire Putin’s Kremlin. Review by Geoffrey Hosking

A depiction of the Great Fear, a wave of French rural riots in July-August 1789
©Bibliotheque Nationale de France

‘Liberty or Death’, by Peter McPhee

A new history of the French Revolution stresses the contemporary relevance of the questions it raised. Review by Ruth Scurr

Richard Gere in 'American Gigolo'
©Paramount Pictures

‘The Suit’, by Christopher Breward

An immaculately turned-out history of the suit looks at the social benefits of formality. Review by Shahidha Bari