Arts and Entertainment For music lovers: John Cusack with his vinyl collection in 'High Fidelity'

As a former couple go to court in a bid to carve up their record collection, Tom Hodgkinson rejoices in the fact that our love affair with vinyl is far from over

Lost Hobbit images get first showing

Unseen drawings by J R R Tolkien published this week throw new light on an old classic

My Father's Fortune, By Michael Frayn

A son takes stock of riches beyond measure

The Lost Diaries, By Craig Brown

Better spaghetti, passing wind, and Madonna's sex

The Sound of Fear, Radio 4, Tuesday<br/>One to One, Radio 4, Tuesday

Is that a voice from beyond? Or Lyse Doucet?

The Sun King, By Nancy Mitford

An age of Regal pomp and dodgy plumbing

1Q84: Book One and Book Two, By Haruki Murakami, trs Jay Rubin

Everything under the two moons

Howard Jacobson: Forget Kevin, it's the book we need to talk about

And so, with a dignified nod to anyone who cares to notice, I straighten my bow tie, wipe away a tear, put on my bravest face and leave the stage.

Letters: Libya after Gaddafi

The end of Gaddafi's regime bodes ill for Libya

National Novel Writing Month: Write your novel online

A writer writes, or so the popular dictum has it. In reality, a writer is far more likely to procrastinate – to watch TV, go for a walk, take up macramé – than they are to actually knuckle down to it. This is why an initiative called National Novel Writing Month – or NaNoWriMo for acronym enthusiasts – exists: an online support group that encourages wannabe novelists, over the course of one frantic month, to actually put pen to paper, finger to keyboard.

1Q84, By Haruki Murakami

How odd, but apt, that an author who writes so often and so well about the lure of cults should himself have become the idol of a worldwide sect of votaries. Near the end of the first of the three volumes that make up Haruki Murakami's 1Q84, a policewoman who has investigated a secretive commune reports that "Doctrine-wise, it's kind of deconstructionist". Initiates absorb "a jumble of images of religion" that takes in "new-age spiritualism, fashionable academicism, a return to nature, anti-capitalism, occultism, and stuff". Overall, their creed "has a bunch of flavours, but no substantial core". Ayumi, a traffic cop who likes to pick up strangers in the company of the novel's heroine and enjoy "all-night sex feasts", adds: "In McLuhanesque terms, the medium is the message. Some people may find that cool."

Book Of A Lifetime: Coming Through Slaughter, By Michael Ondaatje

My book of a lifetime? Easy. 'Coming Through Slaughter' by Michael Ondaatje. I discovered it just as the cement was setting around the idea of making the dream, writing, an actual career (to the horror of my coal-miner father, who, when hearing of my vaultingly ridiculous ambition, responded - "waste of time, books".) Ondaatje's slim, early tome was introduced by a university lecturer, a failed and depleted writer himself, and it entered my world like a depth charge of possibility. I've carried my battered Picador paperback around for decades; the pages, now, are almost greasy from being thumbed, flipped, dog-eared and scribbled upon.

Inadmissible Evidence, Donmar Warehouse, London

Having been the voice of the "Angry Young Man" in 1956 with Look Back in Anger, John Osborne became the megaphone of the male mid-life crisis eight years later with Inadmissible Evidence. The play is a devastating account of the meltdown of 39-year-old solicitor Bill Maitland. It opens with a Kafkaesque dream in which Maitland is in the dock for having published the "wicked, bawdy and scandalous object" that is his mediocre life. It then turns into a waking nightmare where the division between the outer reality of the office and the inside of Maitland's head is disturbingly blurred. Clients, colleagues, wife, mistress and daughter turn away from him, so that by the end, he's an almost Beckett-like image of a man left alone in the fading light with no hope.

Brendon Burns: Gervais <i>can</i> be forgiven for what he said

For some reason people think they have the right not to be offended, which is an incredibly self-absorbed stance. When one person is horrified by a joke, another person is laughing their arse off. And the person laughing their arse off would never tell the horrified person they're not entitled to their reaction.

Arifa Akbar: It's a case of choosing the right author in the wrong year

By going for the only literary heavyweight on the list, the decision rung a false note

The sense of a happy ending &ndash; Barnes wins the Booker

He's made the shortlist three times before, but finally the novelist has taken the prize

Arts and Entertainment
Sydney and Melbourne are locked in a row over giant milk crates
art
News
Kenny Ireland, pictured in 2010.
peopleActor, from House of Cards and Benidorm, was 68
News
A scene from the video shows students mock rioting
newsEnd-of-year leaver's YouTube film features staging of a playground gun massacre
Travel
travel
Voices
A family sit and enjoy a quiet train journey
voicesForcing us to overhear dull phone conversations is an offensive act, says Simon Kelner
News
i100This Instagram photo does not prove Russian army is in Ukraine
News
Morrissey pictured in 2013
people
Sport
sportVan Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
Environment
View from the Llanberis Track to the mountain lake Llyn
Du’r Arddu
environmentA large chunk of Mount Snowdon, in north Wales, is up for sale
Life and Style
Martha Stewart wrote an opinion column for Time magazine this week titled “Why I Love My Drone”
lifeLifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot... to take photos of her farm
Career Services

Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

In grandfather's footsteps

5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

Martha Stewart has flying robot

The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

The dining car makes a comeback

Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

Gallery rage

How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

Eye on the prize

Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

Women's rugby

Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices