News

Actor is the third 'Marlboro man' to die from a smoking-related illness

The Streets of Babylon, By Carina Burman, trs Sarah Death

It's 1851 and Euthanasia Bondeson, the Swedish novelist, and her niece Agnes are in London, visiting the Great Exhibition. Euthanasia, the narrator, is self-centred, bullish and blessed with a talent for writing: ("The sun knew blood had been spilled during the night. Its gleam spread crimson across the sea, for the sun cared little for the horrifying deed that had been done"); while Agnes is "always getting lost. Apart from beauty, a certain silliness and the occasional bout of good common sense, it is her most prevalent characteristic." Unfortunately, Agnes manages to get lost.

Step Up 2 The Streets (PG)

Not so much a sequel to Step Up as a rehash: once again, a cross-the-tracks romance between breakdancing white trash and upper-crust ballet snob is enlivened by a smattering of gang violence and rather too many shots of young people spinning around on their heads.

You write the reviews: Laura Marling, My Manic and I EP (Virgin)

There's a gentle darkness to Laura Marling's songs that doesn't appear anywhere else at the present moment in music. It's a nostalgic darkness, harking back to the days of Joni Mitchell, Eva Cassidy and an early Beth Orton, all of whom resonate to an extent in Marling's music. But despite the musical remnants of the past, these songs are unmistakably modern. From lyrics about size zero in the opening track, "New Romantic", to the particularly apt references to binge-drinking in the closing track, "Typical", this is a folk singer writing for today.

Vice: The style magazine hasn't lost it insatiable urge to offend

These hip young things are celebrating the fifth birthday of a style magazine that now boasts its own record label, TV channel and even a pub. But with global success, 'Vice' hasn't lost its insatiable urge to offend...

AIM's sickly tiddlers swim against tide

The number of poorly companies fell last year amid favourable economic conditions in the UK.

Sale 28 Newcastle 5: Ripol doubles up as Sale cruise past hapless Falcons

Two tries to Oriol Ripol enabled Sale to power past Newcastle at Edgeley Park last night.

A new protest song: Joan Baez - she shall overcome

A veteran of 40 years of demonstrations, the American folk singer's latest campaign involves camping in a tree to save a 14-acre farm from the developers. Andrew Buncombe reports

Risk-taking is fine, gambling is not

Investing people's money carries huge responsibility, but the rewards are equally great

Paul Weller, Usher Hall, Edinburgh

A touch of genius can get this survivor out of a jam

Musical youth

Shortlist of 'eccentrics' for Mercury music prize

The runners and riders for the most prestigious prize in the music calendar were announced yesterday and were promptly branded a group of British eccentrics by the chairman of the judging panel.

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Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable