Arts and Entertainment

Adam Foulds’s last novel, The Quickening Maze, was a truly superb study in madness and early psychiatric methods, combining the intellectual and the visceral in often startling ways (few will forget his description of the “dismantling” of a deer). In this latest work, he retains that powerful blend and focuses on another kind of madness: the madness of war.

Irish chess killing: Italian lodger charged with murdering Tom O’Gorman ‘tried to eat his heart after argument over chess move’

Police found body of 39-year-old Irishman had suffered 'dozens' of stab wounds and had a section of lung missing

Man ‘stabbed to death over game of chess’ in Ireland

Police found a 39-year-old man dead with multiple stab wounds, with detectives saying they believe a row over a chess move may have spiralled out of control

Giuseppe Sannino

Watford appoint Giuseppe Sannino as replacement for Gianfranco Zola

Italian Sannino had been out of work since being sacked by Chievo

People of Liberty party (PDL) leader Silvio Berlusconi

Indyplus more: Berlusconi ‘paid Mafia bosses millions of euros in pact lasting decades’

Conviction for the former Italian prime minister’s long-time associate adds to mounting troubles

Nino Di Matteo (on left) in Palermo; he is permanently accompanied by a ring of armed carabinieri following threats made against him by a Mafia boss

‘It is worth it and it is right’: A year of living dangerously for the prosecutor taking on the Mafia

Nino di Matteo’s life has been threatened by jailed former boss of bosses, Toto 'the Beast' Riina, over his investigation into links between the mob and the Italian state in the 1990s

Giuseppe Sannino

Giuseppe Sannino claims he is in line to replace Gianfranco Zola at Watford manager

The Italian, who was sacked by Chievo in November, has seen his odds of becoming manager at Vicarage Road cut dramatically

Former Italian midfielder Gennaro Gattuso has claimed he 'can't see a place for women in football'.

Former Italy midfielder Gennaro Gattuso claims 'I can't see women in football' after appointment of Barbara Berlusconi at AC Milan

The 35-year-old was speaking to an Italian radio station when he made the remark

Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes will leave the club at the end of the season with his likely destination being Monaco

Transfer news: Barcelona goalkeeper Victor Valdes to turn down Arsenal summer move in favour of Monaco switch - reports

The 31-year-old is believed to prefer a move to France after admitting he would love to play alongside former team-mate Eric Abidal once again

Gennaro Gattuso

Gennaro Gattuso fired by notoriously trigger happy Palermo president Maurizio Zamparini

The news comes following a string of bad results in Serie B

Giovanni Trapattoni looks set for an exit as Republic of Ireland coach unless he can perform a miraculous turnaround

Giovanni Trapattoni accepts Republic of Ireland days are numbered with hope dwindling

Only an unlikely run of results can save the Italian while Wales and Scotland play for pride

Cecile Kyenge, Italy’s first black minister, has faced prejudice

Italians removing children from racially mixed schools

Classroom aversion to immigrants may reflect tensions in politics and society in general

People of Liberty party (PDL) leader Silvio Berlusconi

Berlusconi ‘paid Mafia bosses millions of euros in pact lasting decades’

Conviction for the former Italian prime minister’s long-time associate adds to mounting troubles

Emiliano Viviano

Transfer news: Goalkeeper Emiliano Viviano joins Arsenal on loan for the season

The Italy international joins from Palermo for the season

Arsenal have made an offer for Real Madrid midfielder Mesut Ozil

Arsenal transfer news: At last! Real Madrid midfielder Mesut Ozil completes move to Arsenal in £42.5m deal

Arsenal spend nearly three times previous transfer record to seal signing of midfielder

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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
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas