News

There is a strange cacophony outside the offices of i in Manhattan today. Beyond the whistling of the -10 degree wind through the ill-fitting windows, there is the non-stop beep-beep of countless construction vehicles warning Times Square pedestrians to watch out.

DVD: Bandslam (PG)

Will (Gaelan Connell), a gawky, David Bowie-fixated teen, hates Cincinnati, where he's picked on, but fortunately his sweet mum (Lisa Kudrow) moves them to New Jersey, where, even more fortunately, he hooks up with two pretty girls (Alyson Michalka and Vanessa Hudgens) who compete for his attention.

They Is Us, By Tama Janowitz

Janowitz's dystopian vision of the end of 21st-century New Jersey isn't as expansive as Margaret Atwood's Year of the Flood, but it's concerned with similar issues: environmental disaster (no water, only a gloopy substitute), genetically modified food and animals (rabbits with feathers, pigs with human features), an explosion of the sex industry. I wonder if anyone will ever write a futuristic novel where the environmental movement has succeeded so well that we all live in some pre-lapsarian paradise, and wearing a few well-placed leaves isn't standard dress for appearing in a strip club.

Cultural Life: Kelly Osbourne

'I picked up a book called 'Daughters of Shame' by Jasvinder Sanghera at the airport because I needed something to read on the plane.'

Obituaries in brief

Marie Knight

The gospel singer Marie Knight, who died in Harlem on 6 September aged 84, came to prominence touring with Sister Rosetta Tharpe in the 1940s and singing hits such as "Beams of Heaven."

New Jersey second puts Harrington in top 10

Padraig Harrington is back in the world's top 10 after finishing joint runner-up in the opening event of the US Tour's FedEx Cup play-offs.

Comedian sued over one in-law joke too many

A comedian is being sued by her mother-in-law after making her the punchline of too many jokes.

Air crash controller 'was making call'

An air traffic controller who was making a personal phone call when a small plane and a helicopter collided over New York's Hudson River has been removed from duty along with his supervisor, who was out of the building at the time.

Ex-Beatles, Rolling Stones manager Klein dies

Music manager Allen Klein, a no-holds-barred businessman who bulldozed his way into and out of deals with the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, died yesterday, a publicist for his company said. He was 77.

Pilot dies at controls on flight to US

A pilot on a Continental Airlines flight from Brussels to Newark died in mid-flight yesterday, but its 247 passengers landed safely in New Jersey under the control of two co-pilots.

Transatlantic pilot dies mid-flight

Co-pilots were forced to take over the controls and land a transatlantic passenger jet in the US today after the captain died mid-flight.

'I love giving the gift of a child to a couple that can't have one'

It can be a magical experience – or a degrading disaster. Jerome Taylor hears a surrogate mother's story

The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, By Junot Díaz

With this startling, breathless, sweetly harsh debut novel, Junot Díaz, a justifiable Pulitzer Prize winner, has managed to portray both the particularity of the inner life of a Dominican teenage boy in contemporary New Jersey, as well as draw universal conclusions about men and women, race and class.

Cash crisis forces California to free 55,000 prisoners

The debt-ridden state can no longer afford to keep inmates in an expensive and bloated penal system

Hudson River pilot: 'We were just doing our jobs'

Hundreds of people holding signs and waving American flags cheered wildly Saturday to honor the pilot who safely landed a US Airways jetliner in the Hudson River. He told them he and his crew were only doing their jobs.

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Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
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Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

Scarred by the bell

The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones