Arts and Entertainment

Where are you now and what can you see?

I’m at the BBC recording Front Row and apparently I’m looking at a brass bust of Henry Wood. The statue is in the foyer.

News Corp results disappoint market

News Corporation, Rupert Murdoch's media conglomerate, disappointed the Australian market after posting lower than expected results for the year to June, But the company softened the blow by announcing a good performance of some of its key UK and US operations and its intentions to buy back some of its preferred limited voting stock. One analyst said the results were "very disappointing".

The Major Years: a memoir in the making

Yesterday morning on the Today programme they were discussing why it is that political biographies sell so badly. It seems that new books on Tony Blair and William Hague are currently on the worst-seller list, and Julian Critchley and Tony Howard were being asked to explain why.

Peace breaks out in Middle Earth

It Has been a four-year-long feud for hobbit devotee David Day. His guide to the elves, dwarves and magic of Middle Earth is to be published this week after he took on his very own fire-breathing dragon - in the guise of the Tolkien estate - and finally won.

Making history

The Gunpowder Plot by Antonia Fraser (Weidenfeld, pounds 12.99) The Jacobean Catholic laity had been suspected of treason for so long that they decided to commit it. Fraser's even-handed account, informed by her upbringing, makes clear that a plot was encouraged by agents provocateurs and discouraged by the Jesuits, who still died for it.

Books: The don with voluminous prose

Robert Hanks finds little sense in an erudite history of silly verse



Letter: No sale

Sir: Your report "Lobbyist offers his memoirs for sale" (13 February) is wholly inaccurate insofar as your references to HarperCollins are concerned. HarperCollins decided not to publish Ian Greer's book because we could not see any commercial justification for doing so. In short, we did not think it would make money.

OBITUARIES : Tristan Hawkins

Tristan Hawkins wrote by day and went home to write by night.

Enduring spell of a trilogy that leaves the critics cold

The story goes that, when JRR Tolkien read a newly-composed passage of The Lord of the Rings to his fellow Christian writers in the Oxford of the 1950s, his friend and colleague C S Lewis muttered: "Not another fucking elf." Sceptics still feel much the same.

Preface to 1997

Boyd Tonkin looks ahead to the new year's lead reads

Books: The books you listen to

Brush up on your Conrad, next year's most fashionable classic author, with a reading of The Secret Agent (HarperCollins, 3hrs, pounds 7.99), his tale of revolutionary terrorism inspired by the bombing of Greenwich Observatory in 1894. Joss Ackland's voice is mesmerising.

Happy endings hard to find for destitute writers

Book world: Once-successful novelists and biographers look to literary charities as publishers cut advances by up to a third

Write-off and costs send News plunging

News Corporation, Rupert Murdoch's master company, saw third- quarter profits plunge 69 per cent to $59m (pounds 39m), and blamed higher costs at satellite broadcaster Star TV and a $152m write-off following the sale of HarperCollins's educational publishing arm to Pearson.

Maxwell seeks ban on 'inside story' book

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Minoan Crete and Santorini
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Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific