The novel cure for resistance to change

Literary prescriptions for modern ailments
This wood and glass pillow book forms part of the Institute of Sexology exhibition at the Wellcome Trust

Exposing an authoritarian state with explicit sex in fiction: Week in Books column

In 2007, the Chinese novelist Chen Xiwo wrote a story collection based on the deadly sins, with each of the seven dramatised explicitly and without concession to state censors. Perhaps unsurprisingly, The Book of Sins was banned by the Chinese government. One story was seen as particularly degenerate: “I Love My Mum”, in which a disabled teenager is arrested for murdering his mother and admits to having had sex before – and after – whipping her to death.

Botswana's amazing wildlife features on eight pages about the country in 'The World', while Brazil is covered in just six pages

A guidebook to the world or an airline meal of travel information?

Lonely Planet brings out the first travel guide to the entire globe today. Simon Calder was thrilled at the prospect - until he read it. Plus, the publisher justifies what they left out

Page turner: e-book sales last year fell by 26 per cent from 2012

Have we fallen out of love with e-readers?

While Amazon gets ready to launch a new Kindle, Caroline Corcoran is one of a growing number of people who are going back to books

The grandfather of communism, Karl Marx

Between the Covers: What’s really going on in the world of books

Between the Covers is a big fan of real-life bookshops that know about reading and pay all their taxes, and an even bigger fan of canvas book bags.

Julia Donaldson interview: Even with 160 children's titles to her name, she insists 'no part of writing is easy'

Donaldson: 'I’ve heard that something like a third of all books sold are children’s books but if you look at the review space given you could be forgiven for thinking it was three-hundredths'

1 Surprisingly unrelated pairs of words
Male and female. Nothing to do with each other. From unrelated Latin roots masculus and femella, diminutive of femina. Unlike man and woman, which are related: man and wife-man in Old English

Listellany: A miscellany of Very British Top 10s

There’s nothing as important as trivia, argues John Rentoul. To prove his point, he’s compiled a book of it. General knowledge will never be the same

Julia Donaldson isn't

Julia Donaldson: 'Don't push books on teens, they'll come back later'

Some prefer kicking a ball, and that's fine, says former Children's Laureate
At 83, Edna O’Brien’s stock has never been higher

Edna O'Brien: 'I had to grow old before they'd give me credit'

At 83, her stock has never been higher. It's about time, the former bad girl of Irish literature tells Cole Moreton
Sir Winston Churchill with his daughter Mary and son-in-law Christopher Soames (right) in 1964.

The diarists: This week in history

7 October, 1970

Cynthia Gladwyn wife of the British Ambassador to France:

"Went to France again last Friday to… a shoot. The guest of honour was the Prince of Wales. At dinner we were at three tables and Mary Soames [daughter of Winston Churchill] was at mine. She makes a tremendous din. Very jolly and kind-hearted, but with all the brashness which, so I have always heard, was characteristic of the home life of the Churchills. Words like bloody and bugger-off were bandied about loudly and so excited did she get that at one moment her son Nicholas (who… is equerry to the Prince) came over to tick her off and beg her to be quiet."

The Novel Cure: Literary prescriptions for flatulence

Literary prescriptions for modern ailments.
Struggles of creation: Elif Shafak

How to free the written word: protest, and freedom in literature: Week in Books column

Tonight at around sunset, a book burning will kick-start the London Literature Festival’s meditation on a dystopic, post-literate future where reading is an act of rebellion. Or at least, an imaginary book burning with a conceptual pyre in the Southbank Centre’s Purcell Room, around which a dramatised reading of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 will take place. The audience are invited to bring their favourite books to this Brave New Bookless World, where even Fifty Shades of Grey is samizdat.

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Kieron Richardson plays gay character Ste Hay in Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks

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Len Goodman appeared to mutter the F-word after Simon Webbe's Strictly performance

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