Life and Style Shaken, not stirred: a pre-dinner martini

The aperitif is back, the aperitif is in. At Simon Rogan's joint in the Midland Hotel, Manchester, a guy in a bomber jacket breaks off a conversation with his date, "I'll have Just a Splash – that cocktail with Aperol and Prosecco," he says to the barman.

Honour, By Elif Shafak

Honour, a Turkish-Kurdish family saga set in London, takes Elif Shafak into new literary territory. Shafak is a prolific, controversial and critically acclaimed young Turkish novelist, columnist and academic whose previous novel, The Forty Rules of Love, has been long-listed for the 2012 IMPAC prize. She has been the victim of political harassment in Turkey: a 2006 case against her novel The Bastard of Istanbul, under the notorious Article 301 of the Turkish penal code, ensured her global attention as a political figure as well as a literary one.

An under-12s football game in Hong Kong goes violent

Trending: When under-12s football goes violent (and viral)

At four-down at half-time and faced with an uphill battle to get even, the blue side took the only approach they could see fit. Kick the blazes out of their opponents in black and white and hope to nick a few goals from a team clearly outclassing them.

Scott, described by the judge as 'a fantasist', outside court in 2010

Raymond Scott: Shakespeare thief

Raymond Scott, who died on 14 March, was a flamboyant antiques dealer who was jailed for handling a stolen first edition of Shakespeare's plays. Scott, who passed himself off as a wealthy playboy before his conviction, was pronounced dead after being found unconscious in his cell at Northumnberland Prison, where he was serving an eight-year sentence.

A golden age for Dutch Masters

Low tuition fees and the quality of student life mean there's never been a better time for postgraduate study in Holland

Picture perfect: a place where the mind can flourish

High ranking universities, more time with your tutor – and lower fees than the UK. There's a lot to tempt prospective students

Eric Pickles faces anger over comments on ethnic minorities

Eric Pickles, the Communities Secretary, faced anger last night after he claimed members of ethnic minorities who could not speak English “like a native” could become a sub-class “stuck in a ghetto”.

England has suffered a bigger cut than other parts of the UK, with a 31 per cent reduction in courses

The tuition paradox: You pay more money, you get less choice

The past six years have seen a spectacular reduction in the number of courses taught by universities, as the impact of higher fees begins to be felt

Snookered, Oldham Coliseum

Wow! This is the most accomplished and assured first play I have seen for years. It is all the more extraordinary for being written by an Asian taxi driver from Middlesbrough who was driving his cab one night listening to Five Live when it announced a writing competition. Next day he sat down at his new computer.

Bloomsbury set to start a new chapter as India market thrives

Publisher Bloomsbury is to set up a new business in India to take advantage of growing demand from the country's English-speaking middle class.

Twenty of Christie's novels have been adapted and presented with learning notes and CD

The mysterious affair of how Agatha Christie is teaching foreigners English

Twenty of the author's novels have been adapted and presented with learning notes and a CD

Fabio Capello gave controversial interview to Italian television

James Lawton: Where's old Fabio, the one of solid judgement?

Those of us who celebrated so enthusiastically the appointment of Fabio Capello had one moment of sadly fleeting vindication. It came in Zagreb when it was as though the authority and discipline and flair of England, against the Croatian team that had done so much to expose the ineptitude that preceded the Italian's appointment, was nothing so much as a confirmation of new standards, new coherence.

Fabio Capello gave controversial interview to Italian television

James Lawton: Where's the old Fabio, the one of safe hands and solid judgement?

That he should indicate his unhappiness to the Italian media is more than a mere breakdown in etiquette

Kristin Scott Thomas

No mystery why we've loved Kristin Scott Thomas for so long...

Kristin Scott Thomas's latest, wonderfully puzzling role is the perfect fit for this most enigmatic of actresses, says Kaleem Aftab

Quercus boosted by ebooks surge

Ebook sales almost quadrupled in December against a year earlier at the Dragon Tattoo publisher Quercus.

English is the common language among non-native speakers

Schools learn language of commerce

Recognition of English as the lingua franca of business is spreading to management courses across Europe

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Michael Buerk in the I'm A Celebrity jungle 2014
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Lincoln MP Karl McCartney 'denied all knowledge' of the Twitter activity

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The author PD James, who died on 27 November 2014
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Detective novelist who wrote Death comes to Pemberley passed away peacefully at her home, aged 94

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Joel Edgerton, John Turturro and Christian Bale in Exodus: Gods and Kings
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Sites using the popular Gigya comment platform were attacked by the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA)

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Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?