The Book of All Books by Robert Calasso, translated by Tim Parks (Allen Lane), £25.00.

The great trick of Roberto Calasso, the legendary Italian publisher and author who died last summer at the age of 80, is to reorientate and recount great stories of the past in a completely beguiling and novel manner. The latest of these to appear in English The Book of All Books, brilliantly aided by the translation by Tim Parks, is perhaps his most ambitious literary escapade of all.