News Allan Umscheid, owner of Yards By Al in Lawrence, Kan, feels the bitter wind and catches drifting snow on his face as he runs a snow blower early morning

With Arctic winds plummeting temperatures to  -50C, much of North America has shut down as authorities warn of the life-threatening freeze

The young generation: Burroughs and Kerouac - an unpublished collaboration

In 1944, two aspiring writers named William Burroughs and Jack Kerouac were implicated in a murder that scandalised New York. The episode inspired a collaboration, a debut that remained unpublished – until now. John Walsh gives the lowdown on the novel that set them on the road

Star in the making: Designer Erdem Moralioglu

His studio may be in Bethnal Green, but rising star Erdem's fabulous, jewel-hued creations are more red carpet than East End, writes Bethan Cole

Fears Buffett is backing Inbev bid for Budweiser has St Louis up in arms

People in St Louis, Missouri, the historic home of Budweiser beer and its maker, Anheuser-Busch, reacted angrily to reports that Warren Buffett, the billionaire investor, is preparing to endorse the sale of the company to Belgian brewer InBev.

Will the king of beers accept its prince?

The stock market may like the idea of InBev's bid for Budweiser, but St Louis locals, and the family that owns the iconic beer, are appalled. By Stephen Foley

Hope for psoriasis sufferers

A dramatic advance in the treatment of psoriasis, the debilitating skin condition which affects more than one million people in the UK, was announced by scientists yesterday.

Steve Gerber: Marvel comic-book writer

Though originally only a cameo figure in a 1970s horror title, Marvel Comics' Howard the Duck went on to a high-profile comic-book career as a wise-cracking, cigar-chewing character. His range and appeal transcended the traditional audience for four-colour superhero fare and contributed to the opening up of the comics medium to a more adult constituency.

Yasmin Alibhai-Brown: This unhealthy strain of left-wing McCarthyism

We argued about Israel, US arrogance, royalty and republicanism

'Shoot the mayor' gunman kills five

A gunman with a grudge against civic leaders stormed a city council meeting early today, killing two police officers and three others before being shot dead.

Jeremy Warner's Outlook: Poor performance and high pay is rightly proving a deadly combination for US bosses

Megacaps have their attractions too; Ratan Tata weighs his options on Corus

All-frills airline Eos enjoys 'explosive growth'

A new all-frills airline aimed at transatlantic business travellers has claimed it broke even last month by selling six out of every 10 of its oversized seats.

The Heart of America - Road royalty

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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
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Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick