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On the agenda: Latin American art; I Blame Coco; eating al fresco at the National; hotguysreadingbooks.com; Wychwood Festival; Martin Margiela

We're all set to marvel at Margiela, blame Coco and have a picnic with Alan Bennett

Leon Fleisher: 'My life fell apart...'

At 16, he was 'the pianistic find of the century'. There followed a sparkling two decades before his right hand seized up mysteriously. Now, after a 40-year battle to regain mastery of the keyboard, Leon Fleisher is headlining next month's Aldeburgh Festival. Lynne Walker hears his extraordinary story

Playing Days, By Benjamin Markovits

This account of life with an anonymous German basketball team offers an astute anatomy of failure

The Last Englishman: The Double Life of Arthur Ransome, by Roland Chambers

The Arthur Ransome of popular imagination is as buoyant as one of his lake-lashed dinghies. He created, in the Swallows and Amazons series, a 1920s halcyon dream-world anchored to a permanently playful summer holiday. The Lakes of Ransome lore remain a landscape where nature is a cipher for innocence, toil and decency. It is, as biographer Roland Chambers states, an idyll of "cotton tents and grog and tea at four, and children who say 'jolly' and play by the rules; well-behaved children who rise early and know how to do things, tie knots and sail a boat." That legacy still fills the coffers of the thriving tourist industry of Windermere and Coniston Water.

Tony Parsons: Punch drunk love

On completing his trilogy about modern masculinity, the novelist and amateur pugilist Tony Parsons opens up about marriage, parenthood and failing to live up to his father

Beatrice and Virgil, by Yann Martel

Don't be fooled by these talking animals – the author of 'Life of Pi' is up to some cruel literary tricks

The new plastic surgery

Forget a little nip and tuck: all that's needed for a fresh look this season is a littlePerspex. From understated bangles at Prada to fabulous festival-wear at DSquared, it's never been so fashionable to fake it, says Rhiannon Harries

The big march: seeking out the UK's best gardens

While the rest of the country is glued to the World Cup, Emma Townshend will be traversing the UK exploring the best that the new 'Good Gardens Guide' has to offer

Ali Hewson: Edun regained

They live in a mass slum; she lives in luxury. But Ali Hewson – perhaps better known as Mrs Bono – is determined to bring a little bit of paradise to these African lives;and in so doing, she is breathing life back into her ethical-fashion company

Roux at Parliament Square RICS, Parliament Square, London SW1

There are tough times ahead, but Roux at Parliament Square is more classy coalition than culinary compromise

Summertime 2100, and the living isn't easy

What will London be like a century from now? Seven degrees warmer, with water-absorbent streets and parched public parks. Marek Kohn paints an unnerving picture of metropolitan life in the sweaty grip of a radically changed climate

Rhiannon Harries: the last thing we need is another Tesco Metro

The sign on my local grocery store reads "Food and Wine at Clapton Village", although a quick glance at its environs reveals that Clapton is anything but a sleepy hamlet. In fact, it's an area in Hackney, north-east London, abutting a road that used to better known as Murder Mile. Yet to call it a "village shop" somehow seems accurate, providing as it does the sole physical place in which an otherwise fragmented multicultural community rubs shoulders and, hell, even talks to one another occasionally.

Flash, bang, dollop! Variations on a mayonnaise

It takes no time to transform a basic mayo into aioli, rouille, sauce vert or even a spicy, paprika-infused sauce. What more do you need to give a lift to any number of light, summer dishes, asks Skye Gyngell

Oliver James: It's all about you

The ultimate question of parenting: how to ensure your baby has a happy childhood. And the answer the flamboyant psychologist Oliver James has come up with? Selfishly enough, it's working out what you want to get out of the experience...

How we met: Helaine Blumenfeld & Michael G Wilson

'At their table I've sat with the Astronomer Royal, the man behind the portable calculator...'
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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona from £949pp
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro from £799pp
Provence from £599pp
Apulia, Lecce and Vieste – Undiscovered Italy from £899pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples from £759
Classical Spain from £539pp
Prices correct as of 12 September 2014
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week
The fall of Rome? Cash-strapped Italy accused of selling its soul to the highest bidder

The fall of Rome?

Italy's fears that corporate-sponsored restoration projects will lead to the Disneyfication of its cultural heritage
Glasgow girl made good

Glasgow girl made good

Kelly Macdonald was a waitress when she made Trainspotting. Now she’s taking Manhattan
Sequins ahoy as Strictly Come Dancing takes to the floor once more

Sequins ahoy as Strictly takes to the floor once more

Judy Murray, Frankie Bridge and co paired with dance partners
Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Alexander Wang pumps it up at New York Fashion Week
The landscape of my imagination

The landscape of my imagination

Author Kate Mosse on the place that taught her to tell stories