Arts and Entertainment What a racket: Conor Woodman in 'Scam City'

It's not just that the National Geographic documentary series Scam City is a pointless programme, it's that it's also a uniquely irritating one. Whereas most consumer watchdogs investigate scams at the instigation of aggrieved parties, in Scam City presenter Conor Woodman, travels the world looking for trouble and – what's more pitiful – often fails to find it.

New Orleans: Calm after the storm

New Orleans may be struggling to come to terms with life after Hurricane Katrina, but Marcel Theroux finds plenty of inspiration among the devastation

Paperback: The Line Upon a Wind, by Noel Mostert

Notable for self-sufficiency, humour and kindness, the British seaman is the real hero of this enthralling epic on the naval war that swept from the Nile to New Orleans between 1793-1815. We learn, for example, of Collins, a sailor who swam through seas "churning with shot" to take a line to a stricken vessel. Inevitably, Mostert's masterly narrative focuses on the protagonists of the era. Nelson's "ache for glory" always took him to the heart of the action. But before Trafalgar, he told midshipmen: "I shall not live to know about it myself." A great book for the beach, to be read within earshot of the breakers.

Honeydripper (PG)

John Sayles delves into the early years of rock'n'roll. Danny Glover plays the owner of a blues club in Fifties Alabama who tries to stave off bankruptcy by hiring the New Orleans legend "Guitar Sam" for a one-night-only gig.

Album: Cajun Dance Party, The Colourful Life (XL)

The very opposite of an exactly-what-it-says-on-the-tin band, Cajun Dance Party aren't particularly danceable, and their sound is more Primrose Hill than New Orleans.

A man who sounds like a winner already

It was the power of his smile. It shone a beam all the way to the back of the arena at Tulane University in New Orleans yesterday that none of us inside – all 4,000 seats filled – could miss. Outside, the overflow crowd of many more hundreds surely felt it too, even if they couldn't see it with their own eyes.

Album: The Blind Boys of Alabama, Down in New Orleans (Proper)

Despite having been in existence since the days when music revolved at 78rpm, The Blind Boys of Alabama have never before recorded in New Orleans – and sadly, listening to this latest album, it's no surprise.

Willy DeVille, Pistola

Label: Eagle

Sri Lanka 231 & 332 England 229 & 190: Muralitharan wizardry makes mockery of Ashes ambitions

The scenes at Trent Bridge yesterday were far removed from those nine months ago, when Ashley Giles clipped Shane Warne through mid-wicket for two to secure a remarkable three-wicket victory over Australia. At the end of that unforgettable series, and after regaining the Ashes, England held ambitions of becoming the best side in the world.

The Derby: Downs and ups of Epsom nearly man

The veteran trainer Barry Hills has won many great races, but Derby success has eluded him by the narrowest of margins

Leading article: Thank you, Rosa

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