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.

The Sense of an Ending, By Julian Barnes

A dark alley, just off Memory Lane

A 'Between The Covers' Special

Your guide to what's really going on inside the world of the Man booker longlist

Tony and Susan, By Austin Wright

Lost classic with a thriller inside

Leading article: Look back in enmity

And so one of the longest, bitterest and most entertaining literary feuds of recent times goes gentle into that good night. The Nobel prize-winning novelist V S Naipaul and the best-selling travel writer Paul Theroux sealed their reconciliation with a handshake amid the old tomes and new celebrities that crowd Hay-on-Wye at this time of year. Authors concerned with gravitas and structure both, they could not but appreciate the symmetry: this was the very place where they had fallen out so dramatically 15 years before. Conciliation services were supplied by Ian McEwan, whose novels include Enduring Love and whose latest work, Solar, features a Nobel laureate (albeit a physicist) – so you might say he was supremely equipped for the task.

Ready To Wear: I won't be put off by going head-to-head with an icon

We're off to Chesil Beach for a mini-break.

Mothers, sons and other lovers: How love in literature has changed

The boundaries of romance have spread, and family life has evolved. Lisa Appignanesi argues that the greatest story ever told now springs modern surprises on readers

Solar, By Ian McEwan

Clean energy and dirty little secrets

The Blagger's Guide To...The Romantic Novel Of The Year

A prize to set a maiden's heart a-flutter

The Whisperer, By Donato Carrisi

Literary thriller? More a grim tale from the shallow end

Modern novels: They're big, but they're not always clever

When did the modern novel get so long and unwieldy? Sometimes the best things come in small packages, says Arifa Akbar

Seen any good books lately?

The liberties film-makers take with characters and plot when they adapt well-loved novels too often spoil the stories for fans of the originals, argues Arifa Akbar

Books of the Year: Literary fiction

Howard Jacobson richly deserved his Booker prize, but so many other novels divided cultured opinion

Cultural Life: Mary McCartney, photographer

Visual Arts: Sargent and the Sea at the Royal Academy. The emotional seascapes and beautifully lit beach scenes are inspiring. I subscribe to get a Friends of the Tate and Friends of the Royal Academy card each year, so I can pop into each gallery often. Also, they both have really nice cafés, so it is a good place to meet for snacks. The Museum of Everything, with Sir Peter Blake's collection of stuff he has found over the years is very sweet and interesting too.

Lionel Shriver: 'Let's up our game, not exclude men'

The only way to truly narrow the gender divide in literature is for female novelists to write some great books, says Shriver

Joan Smith: If Blair was like an animal in bed, was it a hamster?

One of the very few conversations I ever had with Tony Blair was about sex. Years later, when I ran into him again at No 10, he didn't seem pleased to see me; the spark had gone, and I came to the conclusion that the Iraq war had come between us. I was against it, he was for it: for that man and this woman, clearly there was just no way back.

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