Arts and Entertainment

Private Alex Stringer, of the Royal Logistic Corps, was 20 when he was blown up in Afghanistan: "The reason I lost my left leg so high up is because the burning paint cooked my left leg all the way down to the bone. But if I hadn't set myself on fire, I would have bled out and died – as a result of it, all the arteries became cauterised".

BOOK REVIEW / Watery draught of Vichy

Brian Moore's late fiction is anorexically insubstantial. By Christophe r Hawtree; The Statement by Brian Moore Bloomsbury, pounds 14.99

A new leaf as Muslims put Rushdie on the spot

DAVID LISTER

LETTER: Headington's stars

From Mr Paul Newnham

When a city suit is just too much

mail-order junkie by Genevieve Fox

BOOK REVIEW / Ten years of lunching

IN THE FIFTIES by Peter Vansittart, John Murray pounds 19.99

Hung up on Julie and Toby

The 'Modern Review' has been shut down by its editor, Toby Young. Can't, says Julie Burchill, its founder. Media folk are taking sides in the mother of all postmodern battles. Phone-lines are hotting up. John Lyttle, a former contributor, fields the calls; Martin Rowson (also ex-MR) pour s oil on troubled waters

OBITUARY : Jan Culik

Jan Culik was born in time still to benefit from the all-round, "classical" education in the tradition of the inter-war, democratic Czechoslovak Republic. This education however failed to prepare the members of his generation for the political cataclysms which were to befall Czechoslovakia from 1939 onwards and left them often rather isolated in the totalitarian decades which were to follow.

LEADING ARTICLE : You can hide, but you sure can't run

One night about a century ago, in the dark and fire and confusion, Jim jumped. Though he might later emerge as "Lord Jim", Conrad's hero was doomed by that moment. He could never return to the centre of things. He would forever wander on the periphery of the world. A hundred years ago, this seemed a terrible fate, something to place a man's humanity under the most searching examination. Where a modern writer might see Jim's subsequent adventures and triumphs in Borneo as the heart of the story, and the preceding catastrophe as merely a device to get him there, Conrad saw that all of this was merely a coda to the primal act of running away: that nothing could withdraw the awful cowardice of a moment's surrender.

An empty pot at the rainbow's end BLIND SPOTS

D H Lawrence has had countless passionate admirers - from F R Leavis and Lionel Trilling to hordes of angry, thwarted adolescents. But none has loved him half as much, says Thomas Sutcliffe, as Lawrence himself Imagine being trapped in a railway carriage

DIARY: Obituaries of the late Patricia Highsmith

Obituaries of the late Patricia Highsmith have stressed her unhappy childhood, her friendships with Graham Greene and Paul Bowles, her sphinx-like inscrutability and so forth. But not enough attention, I feel, has been paid to her relationship wi th snails.

Auden: How school taught me about fascism

A battered notebook with the poet's reflections on public school is to be sold. Marianne Macdonald reports

Graham Greene archive sold to American college

UK cannot meet £1m price, Marianne Macdonald reports

Obituary: Elaine Greene

laine Ruth Herbert, literary agent: born New York City 27 November 1920; married 1944 Robert Shaplen (died 1988; marriage dissolved), 1951 Hugh Greene (KCMG 1964, died 1987; two sons; marriage dissolved 1969); died London 10 January 1995.

Dash it all Jeeves, you've failed the test Could P G Wodehouse have written better with a grammar checker? David Bowen doe sn't think so

The late Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse was a master of the English language. Luckily he did not have Grammatik 5, or he could have been a very confused master.

Right of Reply : Michael Shelden defends his biography of Graham Greene, The Man Within

Published last month, Michael Shelden's biography of Graham Greene, The Man Within, was immediately pilloried for taking a prurient interest in the author's sex life, for its lack of research and overt animosity to its subject. 'The sheer hostility of his biography makes one wonder whether he has told the whole story' (Observer). 'Why he should have whipped himself up to such a fury of indignation in this book is a puzzle' (Irish Times). 'He is a locker-room snoop, digging and hustling for sleaze.' (Independent). 'Unfair', claims the American biographer . . .
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NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own