i Penny Mordaunt, Conservative MP

Someone’s about to make a Splash!

Cold light, By Jenn Ashworth

Like the oxymoronic title of Jenn Ashworth's haunting second novel, its insidious and unsettling power resides in the tension created by opposites. The tenderness and delicacy of the 14-year-old girl is juxtaposed with a capacity for great brutality. Set in a northern town as claustrophobic as the relationships depicted, Cold Light unflinchingly tells the sad story of teenage friendship gone awry in the most devastating way.

The rebirth of the Bolshoi theatre

A dazzling £400m refit has given Moscow's famous theatre a fresh start after years of alleged corruption

Search continues for flood survivors

Survivors of devastating floods sought solace in church services yesterday while emergency workers searched wrecked homes for victims.

Mother to play Joanna Yeates in reconstruction

The mother of Joanna Yeates has offered to take part in a TV reconstruction of her daughter's last-known movements in Bristol.

Homes under the hammer surge in popularity

Prospective homeowners are bypassing estate agents in favour of residential auctions. Maryrose Fison reports

Last Night's TV: Can't Bully Me/BBC3<br />Beeny's Restoration Nightmare/Channel 4<br />Nigella's Kitchen/BBC2

Goodness know who came up with the notion that secondary school offers the best days of your life. Whoever it was clearly hadn't spent much time in the classroom (bunking off down the park might, conceivably, count as the best days of your life, though that rather hinges on the prospect of adulthood being very dull indeed). At any rate, as anyone who has ever donned a uniform and picked up a pencil case will know, school – particularly when you are an angst-ridden, parentally constrained adolescent – is far more rubbish than we like to admit. How much infinitely worse it must be when the gloomy spectre of bullying – or "big black cloud" as schoolboy Billy called it last night – is added to the equation.

Blanch to miss start of Super League season with injury

Ireland's World Cup winger, Damien Blanch, has suffered another major setback which will keep him out of the early rounds of the Super League season.

New El Salvador president promises: no confiscations

Declaring "this is not the time for revenge!", and addressing supporters waving red flags and chanting "Yes, he could!", Mauricio Funes led a party of former communist revolutionaries to success in El Salvador's bitterly fought presidential election.

How to make a period home eco-friendly

To transform a historic farmhouse into an environmentally-friendly home, the Tarrys went back to basics

Renovating overseas? Get the experts in

Why endure the hassle of renovating a ruin when you can employ someone to do the hard graft for you? Laura Latham reports

Oval courtroom gets emergency refit

The Sir John Major Room overlooking the green bowl of the Oval Cricket Ground was built for corporate entertainment. Yesterday, it opened as the arena for a grand-scale investigation into alleged institutional incompetence – and a spot of redecorating.

McCanns are asked to return to Portugal

Portuguese police have asked the parents of missing Madeleine McCann if they would consider taking part in a reconstruction of the night she disappeared, sources said today.

Russian community faces schism as Patriarch Alexis sacks London bishop

With sacred song echoing down the aisles and incense filling the air above gilded icons, the Russian Orthodox Cathedral of the Dormition and All Saints seemed a haven of religious harmony.

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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
Israel-Gaza conflict: No victory for Israel despite weeks of death and devastation

Robert Fisk: No victory for Israel despite weeks of devastation

Palestinians have won: they are still in Gaza, and Hamas is still there
Mary Beard writes character reference for Twitter troll who called her a 'slut'

Unlikely friends: Mary Beard and the troll who called her a ‘filthy old slut’

The Cambridge University classicist even wrote the student a character reference
America’s new apartheid: Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone

America’s new apartheid

Prosperous white districts are choosing to break away from black cities and go it alone
Amazon is buying Twitch for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?

What is the appeal of Twitch?

Amazon is buying the video-game-themed online streaming site for £600m - but why do people want to watch others playing Xbox?
Tip-tapping typewriters, ripe pongs and slides in the office: Bosses are inventing surprising ways of making us work harder

How bosses are making us work harder

As it is revealed that one newspaper office pumps out the sound of typewriters to increase productivity, Gillian Orr explores the other devices designed to motivate staff
Manufacturers are struggling to keep up with the resurgence in vinyl records

Hard pressed: Resurgence in vinyl records

As the resurgence in vinyl records continues, manufacturers and their outdated machinery are struggling to keep up with the demand
Tony Jordan: 'I turned down the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series nine times ... then I found a kindred spirit'

A tale of two writers

Offered the chance to research Charles Dickens for a TV series, Tony Jordan turned it down. Nine times. The man behind EastEnders and Life on Mars didn’t feel right for the job. Finally, he gave in - and found an unexpected kindred spirit
Could a later start to the school day be the most useful educational reform of all?

Should pupils get a lie in?

Doctors want a later start to the school day so that pupils can sleep later. Not because teenagers are lazy, explains Simon Usborne - it's all down to their circadian rhythms
Prepare for Jewish jokes – as Jewish comedians get their own festival

Prepare for Jewish jokes...

... as Jewish comedians get their own festival
SJ Watson: 'I still can't quite believe that Before I Go to Sleep started in my head'

A dream come true for SJ Watson

Watson was working part time in the NHS when his debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, became a bestseller. Now it's a Hollywood movie, too. Here he recalls the whirlwind journey from children’s ward to A-list film set
10 best cycling bags for commuters

10 best cycling bags for commuters

Gear up for next week’s National Cycle to Work day with one of these practical backpacks and messenger bags
Paul Scholes: Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United

Paul Scholes column

Three at the back isn’t working yet but given time I’m hopeful Louis van Gaal can rebuild Manchester United
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo music review: A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it

Kate Bush shows a voice untroubled by time

A preamble, then a coup de théâtre - and suddenly the long wait felt worth it
Robot sheepdog technology could be used to save people from burning buildings

The science of herding is cracked

Mathematical model would allow robots to be programmed to control crowds and save people from burning buildings
Tyrant: Is the world ready for a Middle Eastern 'Dallas'?

This tyrant doesn’t rule

It’s billed as a Middle Eastern ‘Dallas’, so why does Fox’s new drama have a white British star?