Arts and Entertainment

One of the most brutal battles of the Second World War was the Nazi offensive against Stalingrad where atrocities were committed on both sides and the soldiers also had to contend with starvation and freezing conditions during a lengthy siege.

The Love-Charm of Bombs, By Lara Feigel. Bloomsbury, £25

Five writers who lived through the London Blitz accounted it as critical in their creative lives as well as epochal in the nation's history. The novelist Elizabeth Bowen was an ARP (Air Raid Protection) warden; so, by nights, was Graham Greene, to whom Lara Feigel owes her title. Rose Macaulay was an ambulance driver. Henry Yorke (better-known as novelist Henry Green) was an auxiliary fireman. All were deeply affected by the suffering and death they encountered. The odd one out is Austrian Hilda Spiel, surviving bitterly in dull Wimbledon.

In the dark: Leo Nucci as Nabucco, with Liudmyla Monastyrska as Abigaille

Classical review: Nabucco - Fifty shades of grey, the opera

In a leaden park-and-bark reading of a Verdian tale of love and loss, the set has more dramatic range than the principals

Postcard from... Limassol

Postcard from... Berlin

Postcard from... Berlin

A man on a chopper-style bicycle rides past the entrance to a construction site for luxury apartments at a 0.8 mile section of the former Berlin Wall, also known as the East Side Gallery, in Berlin March 27, 2013. Four segments of the wall were removed on Wednesday morning, almost a month after builders had stopped tearing down the wall due to protests. Developers plan to build luxury apartments close to the East Side Gallery, which is adorned with the work of artists such as Keith Haring and Gerald Scarfe.

Famous art-covered section of the Berlin Wall removed to make way for building project

Work crews backed by about 250 police removed parts of the Berlin Wall known as the East Side Gallery before dawn today to make way for an upscale building project, despite demands by protesters that the site be preserved.

'No amount of packed lunches and Saturday nights in will fatten your piggy enough' to be able to have a mortgage in London

The Emperor's New Clothes (24/03/13)

Buy your property, don't waste money renting, we're told. But Matthew Bell finds life is much less stressful if you don't own your home

Saturday Quiz answers

1. Leonard Cohen.

René Jacobs, Akademie Für Alte Musik Berlin Pergolesi: Septem Verba a Christo (Harmonia Mundi)

Album review: René Jacobs, Akademie Für Alte Musik Berlin Pergolesi: Septem Verba a Christo (Harmonia Mundi)

Predating Haydn's work on a similar theme, Pergolesi's cycle of seven brief cantatas of two arias apiece represents Christ's meditations on the cross, usually sung by bass, and the responses of the “Anima” or faithful soul, sung in a higher register.

Francesco Totti

Could Francesco Totti make a sensational return for Italy?

The 2006 World Cup winner has been in incredible form this season

Eurocrats engage in Cyprus blame game

The German government insisted yesterday it had not demanded that Cyprus hit ordinary depositors as the price of its eurozone bank rescue, pointing the finger of blame instead at the government in Nicosia and the institutions of the eurozone.

David Hasselhoff greets crowds protesting the toppling of part of the Berlin Wall's remains

David Hasselhoff returns to Germany to protect 'sacred' remains of the Berlin Wall

Excited crowds greet unlikely returning hero of German reunification

David Hasselhoff attends a Save the Wall protest at the East Side Gallery in Berlin

Save Berlin Wall, says David Hasselhoff

David Hasselhoff has put his name behind a campaign to preserve one of the few remaining sections of the Berlin Wall. And in Germany, the Hoff’s name carries weight.

In pictures: millions celebrate St Patrick's Day around the world

Major cities around the globe also paid tribute to the nation's patron saint

Hugo Boss eyes a rally in China

The fashion house Hugo Boss is expecting Asia's luxury market to rebound. Boss's revenue in China rose just 4 per cent in 2012 after sales at shops open a year or more fell in the second and third quarters. But demand has picked up since, and the suitmaker is holding a fashion show in Shanghai in May.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

Homeless Veterans appeal

Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

The Locked Room Mysteries

As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

How I made myself Keane

Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

Wear in review

A look back at fashion in 2014
Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

Might just one of them happen?
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?