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World roundup: Terry Pratchett, Margaret Atwood & Khaled Hosseini

Because our interest in books knows no boundaries, we're adding an occasional roundup of international news to Read Street. Here's the first edition:

Fantasy author Terry Pratchett was knighted today by Queen Elizabeth II for services to literature, AP reports. The 60-year-old British writer is known for his Discworld novels, and has sold more than 55 million books worldwide. He announced last year that he has early onset Alzheimer's.

Margaret Atwood has pulled out of the Emirates Airline International Festival of Literature after the Dubai-based fair pulled a book that refers to a gay relationship, British papers report. Penguin planned to launch Geraldine Bedell's The Gulf Between Us at this month's fair, but was told to cancel those plans because the book was not expected to get past censors. Bedell has blogged for the Guardian, criticizing the decision.

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Who's the hottest writer in the Netherlands? Khaled Hosseini, with two of the three best-selling books in 2008, according to the Literary Saloon. Here's the top three -- have fun deciphering the Dutch tiltles: 1. Khaled Hosseini, De vliegeraar De Bezige. 2. Elizabeth Gilbert, Eten, bidden, beminnen. 3. Khaled Hosseini, Duizend schitterende zonnen.

Photo from AP

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