Arts and Entertainment

Mohammed Ali  used to boast that when boxing,  he would float like a butterfly and sting like a bee. So it is with Germiane Greer. She writes lightly, gracefully even when agitating for a cause. But the words still sting. And unsettle. Here she consciously creates a quasi-religious epic out of a part of her remarkable life when she decided to restore a small, wrecked rainforest in Australia, her homeland. The tone is apocalyptic, themes existential and critical: (wo)man not against, but ardently for wondrous, pitiless and predatory nature. She, the Lionheart, is awed, meets devastation, fears cataclysms, intuits prophecies, bears historical and biological guilt,  seeks redemption and takes stupendous, fervent  action. It really is some story.

The spectacular New York City skyline

The travel agency of mum & dad

Recession-hit adult children are being forced to holiday with their parents, survey shows

Dick Advocaat celebrates return to PSV with 4-2 win over Ajax in Dutch Super Cup

PSV coach Dick Advocaat and captain Mark van Bommel celebrated their return to the club with a 4-2 victory over champions Ajax to claim the Dutch Super Cup.

Tom Hodgkinson: 'As a family, we go to festivals. And work'

The Sex Pistols, brilliantly, attacked the holy trinity of the modern economy: work, shopping and holidays, that is, paid employment, consumption and paid-for leisure. In "17", Johnny Rotten sang: "I don't work, I just speed, that's all I need," adding, with pride, "I'm a lazy sod." "Anarchy in the UK" complains that our Queen's "future dream is a shopping scheme", and in "Holidays in the Sun" he sneered at those who take a cheap holiday in other people's misery.

Harriet Walker: 'Don't ever look ropey – just in case!'

What you wear in your dreams is very important. While in the pub with my fashion friend last week, she narrated a gruesome piece of night-time mind cinema, in which she'd been assaulted in a handicrafts shop by some girls she was at school with. "The worst part," she explained, "wasn't that I couldn't find the right colour of wool or that they were being so vile to me; it was when I realised I was wearing a horrible, horrible coat. And there was nothing I could do about it. I was saying, 'This isn't my coat, honest,' but they just didn't believe me."

'My songs come out of a mature viewpoint on my life' - Elizabeth McGovern

Lady Cora turns to rock'n'roll – but don't expect youthful rage and heartbreak

The Downton Abbey actress came late to music but says it is her passion

Films of the week

July 14 - July 20, 2012

Lisa Markwell: With so much choice, why would anyone feel they had to go to M&S?

Be brave, ditch cheap embellishments and scary patterns and go utterly plain

Sharp rise in women over 40 having babies

Women are embracing motherhood later in life than ever. Births to women over 40 rose to almost 30,000 last year, three times higher than in 1991.

Boyd Tonkin: Excluded and vexed, I fell right down the rabbit hole

No doors ever looked more barred than the Bodleian's on Monday night.

Room Service: Thompson Belgraves, London

Belgraves, which occupies the former Sheraton Belgravia, is the first European venture for Thompson Hotels, a group that made its name with a collection of boutique properties in Manhattan. Its US hotels are known for design-led chic, though they retain a level of affordability, and Belgraves follows the same model.

Finding his voice?: Matthew Perry stars as a grief-stricken sports presenter in the new sitcom 'Go On'

Friend in need of a good role

Could Matthew Perry's new sitcom be The One Where He Finally Gets A Lucky Break? Sarah Hughes finds out

Hodgson knows that his key men need plenty of rest between games

Entire England first team fail to train as Roy Hodgson gets heated

Manager concerned about searing temperatures in Ukraine while weary senior players sit out session

Then, By Julie Myerson

Set in a post-apocalyptic London where even breathing feels like a "rough and complicated act", Myerson's new novel is related by a female narrator who can't remember anything, not even her own name.

Jubilate, By Michael Arditti

"Leaving the miraculous out of life is like leaving out the lavatory or dreams or breakfast," wrote Graham Greene. Judging from his fiction, Michael Arditti might share a similar credo.

All smiles: Charlie and Craig Reid of The Proclaimers

Scotland's singing siblings The Proclaimers celebrate 25 years in the music business

The Proclaimers celebrate 25 years in pop with a new album. James McNair meets them

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Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee