Album: James, The Morning After (Mercury)

This companion-piece to this year's The Night Before mini-album is a far superior effort, a homogenous collection of subtle songs about devastation which packs a powerful punch.

Teenager sentenced for killing soldier

A teenager who killed a soldier just days before he was returning home to his family for Christmas was detained for two and half years today.

He loves death metal, guns and feeding hens – he must be a goalie

Marcus Hahnemann cycles to training, has 'at least nine cars' and stalks deer. Phil Shaw talks to the Wolves No 1 who's the latest in a line of crazy keepers

Mr Robinson's liming punch

Nick Strangeway knocked this up in Guyana and named it after master distiller George Robinson. We visited the local market for provisions a couple of days before so that Nick could get his pineapple and three-year-old rum infusing nicely.

The Sketch: Hague floors Harman in Commons clash

Hague came off weak ground and flattened her with the right mix of argument, wit and yelling

Chris McGrath: Has Gold Cup bout lost vital punch?

Inside Track

Market Report: Punch driven higher on trading hopes

The pubs sector was in focus last night, with Punch Taverns gaining ground as bargain-hunters piled in.

Cocktail: Pass the Buck

A sharp, unusual combination of citrus and floral balanced against the nutty notes of the buckwheat.

Cocktail: Punch

Punches traditionally contain alcohol, spice, citrus, water or tea and sugar. As a rule of thumb refer to an old rhyme that says "one sour, two sweet, three strong and four weak."

Cocktail recipes for New Year's Eve

To ensure your evening goes with a bang, The Independent asked three of Britain's top cocktail barmen to invent celebratory drinks. Shake, serve – and delight in the praise.

Crime and Punishment, By GF Newman

For readers who can think of no more delicious festive treat than a London underworld saga of murder and mayhem in low and – crucially - high places, the creator of the Law and Order TV series has a not-so-little gift for you.

Mark Hix's Perfect Christmas: Canapes and cocktails to get your festive celebrations off to a flying start

Over the next few weeks I'll be giving you lots of tips and ideas for Christmas food and drink – and this week's theme is the festive drinks party. Preparing for a Christmas drinks party can seem an intimidating prospect, but with a bit of forward planning and organisation, you can make light work of the whole thing. So to kick things off, here are a few ideas for delicious cocktails and canapés which you can knock up with the minimum fuss and effort.

Philip Norman: The human drama that unfolds in every snatch of overheard conversation

My favourites are pairs of lovers, especially at that early, transitory stage

Teenager jailed for killing man with one punch

A teenager was jailed for 20 months today for killing a man with a single punch in an unprovoked attack.

Merciless Ikea memoir flat-packs a punch

Former executive's explosive book rips the cosy façade off the Swedish furniture giant
Life and Style
Small winemakers say the restriction makes it hard to sell overseas
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Arts and Entertainment
A comedy show alumni who has gone on to be a big star, Jon Stewart
tvRival television sketch shows vie for influential alumni
Arts and Entertainment
Carrie Hope Fletcher
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Clare Balding
peopleClare Balding on how women's football is shaking up sport
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Lewis Hamtilon and pole-sitter Nico Rosberg
SportShould F1's most aggressive driver curb his instincts in title decider?
Arts and Entertainment
Damien Hirst
artCoalition's anti-culture policy and cuts in local authority spending to blame, says academic
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Kirk Cameron is begging his Facebook fans to give him positive reviews
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Jonny May scores for England
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Prices correct as of 21 November 2014
Mau Mau uprising: Kenyans still waiting for justice join class action over Britain's role in the emergency

Kenyans still waiting for justice over Mau Mau uprising

Thousands join class action over Britain's role in the emergency
Isis in Iraq: The trauma of the last six months has overwhelmed the remaining Christians in the country

The last Christians in Iraq

After 2,000 years, a community will try anything – including pretending to convert to Islam – to avoid losing everything, says Patrick Cockburn
Black Friday: Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Britain braced for Black Friday
Bill Cosby's persona goes from America's dad to date-rape drugs

From America's dad to date-rape drugs

Stories of Bill Cosby's alleged sexual assaults may have circulated widely in Hollywood, but they came as a shock to fans, says Rupert Cornwell
Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

As fans flock to see England women's Wembley debut against Germany, the TV presenter on an exciting 'sea change'
Oh come, all ye multi-faithful: The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?

Oh come, all ye multi-faithful

The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?
Dr Charles Heatley: The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

Dr Charles Heatley on joining the NHS volunteers' team bound for Sierra Leone
Flogging vlogging: First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books

Flogging vlogging

First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books
Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show: US channels wage comedy star wars

Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show

US channels wage comedy star wars
When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine? When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible

When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine?

When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible
Look what's mushrooming now! Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector

Look what's mushrooming now!

Meat-free recipes and food scandals help one growing sector
Neil Findlay is more a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

More a pink shrimp than a red firebrand

The vilification of the potential Scottish Labour leader Neil Findlay shows how one-note politics is today, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Tenderstem broccoli omelette; Fried eggs with Mexican-style tomato and chilli sauce; Pan-fried cavolo nero with soft-boiled egg

Oeuf quake

Bill Granger's cracking egg recipes
Terry Venables: Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back

Terry Venables column

Wayne Rooney is roaring again and the world knows that England are back
Michael Calvin: Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Abject leadership is allowing football’s age-old sores to fester

Those at the top are allowing the same issues to go unchallenged, says Michael Calvin