Arts and Entertainment

Given our national obsession with property prices, Tim Walker’s novel is bound to hit a nerve. His fictional couple, the Manvilles, bought their large north London home at a knock-down price in the 1990s, and it became the key to two aspects of their family life. Jerry, a successful advertising executive, undertook all the original plumbing, electrical and redecoration work; Pen devised a series of popular children’s books, The House on the Hill, whose “cheeky brat with the ridiculous schemes” is modelled on, and named after, her real-life son Conrad: 15 years on, they have done a loft conversion, and divorced.

Harvey does not care about critics

All hail the 21st-century Socrates...

...or, rather, don't, says the novelist Samantha Harvey, in explaining to Danuta Kean why we prefer not to question our beliefs

While the demands of modern life have seen most of us spending longer hours at a computer, for some it has become an overriding obsession

Addicted! Scientists show how internet dependency alters the human brain

Internet addiction has for the first time been linked with changes in the brain similar to those seen in people addicted to alcohol, cocaine and cannabis. In a groundbreaking study, researchers used MRI scanners to reveal abnormalities in the brains of adolescents who spent many hours on the internet, to the detriment of their social and personal lives. The finding could throw light on other behavioural problems and lead to the development of new approaches to treatment, researchers said.

Odd man out: Matthew Rhys, Tamzin Merchant and Freddie Fox star in 'The Mystery of Edwin Drood'

Edwin Drood: The mysterious appeal of Dickens' darkest tale

Gwyneth Hughes explains how she adapted a great literary whodunit for TV

Man jailed for pensioner burglary

A burglar whose terrified 86-year-old victim suffered a suspected heart attack has been jailed for 16 months.

Simon English: Another absurd opportunity for a celebrity brand

Sir Humphrey wanders into the study at Number 10. "I have Mary Portas on the phone for you Prime Minister." The PM is wading through "her vision for the future of our high streets" and is suddenly feeling very depressed. "Tell her I'm out to lunch," he sighs. "On second thoughts, tell her she is."

Simon English: A Government giddy on celebrity deserves Mary's wishful shopping list

Outlook Sir Humphrey wanders into the study at Number 10. "I have Mary Portas on the phone for you Prime Minister." The PM is wading through "her vision for the future of our high streets" and is suddenly feeling very depressed. "Tell her I'm out to lunch," he sighs. "On second thoughts, tell her she is."

Wendy Kays: The best solution to game addiction? Maturity and strategy

While it's tempting to use the "addiction" label to explain the rude behavior of Alec Baldwin after being refused a plane seat because he wouldn't turn off his phone game "Words with Friends," there is a less simple and more sobering explanation.

Little Dragon, Shepherd's Bush Empire

Take a bow, Damon Albarn. He's not actually on stage, but he may well be the reason a good portion of the crowd has turned up.

Terence Blacker: Whatever happened to promiscuity?

It is time to brace ourselves for more bad news. The cover story in this week's Newsweek reveals a new epidemic which already has an estimated nine million Americans in its grip. This scourge is more frightening than bird flu in that carriers of the condition are everywhere – in society, in the home. It could, as Ant and Dec might say, be you.

Terence Blacker: Just how grave is sex addiction?

Would it be heartless to suggest that here is one problem we don't need to worry about?

Album: Lou Reed & Metallica, Lulu (Mercury)

Lulu may be the ultimate Goth album: steeped in art-house self-regard, mired in the vilest extremes of perversion and misery, barked out with as little human warmth as its practitioners can muster and its leaden tortures drawn out to unbearable lengths, it takes the notion of being "drawn to the dark side" to the nth degree.

We Are Three Sisters, The Viaduct Theatre, Halifax

The three frumpy sisters were marooned in a dowdy parsonage on a windswept Yorkshire hillside, surrounded by death and disease, remote from the great events of their time by dint of geography and gender. Yet during the brief years in which they wrote in secret, the Brontës created a slim body of work which outlives them and earns new devotees across the world in each generation.

Heroin and crack addiction falls by 25,000

Britain's drug problem is on the wane according to figures which show that the number of heroin and crack users is down and their average age is rising.

Tom Chatfield: Why do people disappear into virtual worlds?

The thing is...
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Lily Allen performs on stage at Splendour In the Grass 2014 on 27 July, 2014, in Byron Bay, Australia
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Boxing promoter Kellie Maloney, formerly known as Frank Maloney, entered the 2014 Celebrity Big Brother house
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Jerry Hall (Hand out press photograph provided by jackstanley@theambassadors.com)
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Manny Pacquiao lands a blow on Chris Algieri
Pacquiao retains WBO welterweight title – and says he wants Mayweather next
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Mau Mau uprising: Kenyans still waiting for justice join class action over Britain's role in the emergency

Kenyans still waiting for justice over Mau Mau uprising

Thousands join class action over Britain's role in the emergency
Isis in Iraq: The trauma of the last six months has overwhelmed the remaining Christians in the country

The last Christians in Iraq

After 2,000 years, a community will try anything – including pretending to convert to Islam – to avoid losing everything, says Patrick Cockburn
Black Friday: Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Britain braced for Black Friday
Bill Cosby's persona goes from America's dad to date-rape drugs

From America's dad to date-rape drugs

Stories of Bill Cosby's alleged sexual assaults may have circulated widely in Hollywood, but they came as a shock to fans, says Rupert Cornwell
Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

As fans flock to see England women's Wembley debut against Germany, the TV presenter on an exciting 'sea change'
Oh come, all ye multi-faithful: The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?

Oh come, all ye multi-faithful

The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?
Dr Charles Heatley: The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

Dr Charles Heatley on joining the NHS volunteers' team bound for Sierra Leone
Flogging vlogging: First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books

Flogging vlogging

First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books
Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show: US channels wage comedy star wars

Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show

US channels wage comedy star wars
When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine? When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible

When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine?

When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible
Look what's mushrooming now! Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector

Look what's mushrooming now!

Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector
Neil Findlay is more a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

More a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

The vilification of the potential Scottish Labour leader Neil Findlay shows how one-note politics is today, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Tenderstem broccoli omelette; Fried eggs with Mexican-style tomato and chilli sauce; Pan-fried cavolo nero with soft-boiled egg

Oeuf quake

Bill Granger's cracking egg recipes
Terry Venables: Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back

Terry Venables column

Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back
Michael Calvin: Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Those at the top are allowing the same issues to go unchallenged, says Michael Calvin