Arts and Entertainment

'Napoleon was a terrific guy before he started crossing national borders,' says Andrew Wylie

Apology for Rushdie over book lies

Author Sir Salman Rushdie came to the High Court in London today to hear apologies from the writers and publishers of a book which they admitted contained falsehoods about his time under police protection.

Lost dogs and enchantresses make for a strong Booker list, but where is Kelman?

Let's get the annual squall of outrage over first. Kieron Smith, Boy by James Kelman deserved at least a shortlist place in this year's Man Booker contest. Indeed, the beautifully observed, deeply affecting first-person portrait of a Glasgow childhood outshines Roddy Doyle's Dublin equivalent, Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha – which won the prize in 1993.

Clearing A Space, by Amit Chaudhuri

How India prepared its feast of reason

Leading article: Cometh the hour...

"Many enemies," runs the proverb: "Much honour". From the Islamists who still dream of his death to the old-school covert racists of London clubland and the gossip-hounds who reserve a baffling degree of malice for him, Sir Salman Rushdie has never lacked foes. Sometimes, it seems hard to persuade this hugely gifted and historically important novelist that the planet is crowded with his friends as well.

DJ Taylor: We should <i>not</i> be celebrating this literary triumph

One of my sharpest memories from student days is of traipsing the winter pavements of Oxford in December 1981, desperately searching for an unsold copy of Midnight's Children, thenearmarked as somebody's Christmas present. A month into the new year, Rushdie turned up at a college arts festival, and I picked my way through the January slush to luxuriate in his glow.

Mariella Frostrup: Everyone's best friend (especially George Clooney)

Mate of the stars, judge of Best of the Booker ... and yet the husky-voiced presenter is very much one of us

Thomas Sutcliffe: No, TV is not the novel of today

The BBC's controller of fiction, Jane Tranter, picked a good week in which to suggest that television had supplanted the role of the novel in addressing the big social issues of the day, an argument she made in a speech to the Royal Television Society on Monday night. Not very long after she finished speaking, BBC One began transmitting Criminal Justice, Peter Moffat's ambitious five-part series about a young man who finds himself on remand for murder after a one-night stand goes badly wrong. And if the essential subject matter here wasn't startlingly original, the manner of its transmission was – stripped through every night of the week so that those hooked by the excellent opening episode didn't have to wait too long for their next fix. There have been weeks in which Tranter's jab at the established cultural hierarchies could have looked a bit unsubstantiated – but in this one, at least, she was solidly backed up by the Radio Times.

Cover Stories: Best of the Bookers; Mills & Boon exhibition; very Bohemian

Rose Tremain's widely predicted Orange Prize victory with The Road Home calls attention again to the bizarre choices of last year's Man Booker judges. They deemed such fast-forgotten titles such as Michael Redhill's Consolation to be more worthy of a longlist place than Tremain's conspicuously first-rate fiction. But all readers who complain about Booker blunders can make their mark by voting (until 8 July) in the 40th anniversary "Best of the Booker" race, from a shortlist that includes Pat Barker, Peter Carey, JM Coetzee, JG Farrell, Nadine Gordimer and Salman Rushdie: see www.themanbookerprize.com. Coetzee, meanwhile, makes a rare UK appearance to lecture at UEA in Norwich on Thursday 19 June (booking: 01603 508050) as part of the New Writing Worlds festival, devoted this year to literature and the natural world.

Maybe it's time to let men judge Orange Prize, chair of jury says

The chair of the jury of Britain's leading women's literary prize has called for a debate on whether men should be included on the judging panel to ensure a broader mix of tastes.

Salman Rushdie: 'Fiction saved my life'

Symbol, victim, blasphemer, target &ndash; Salman Rushdie, it seems, is anything people need him to be. As his new novel is published, the writer talks to Boyd Tonkin

Amis? He owes it all to Hitchens, says critic

Martin Amis, the novelist turned socio-political ponderer, is well accustomed to the occasional beating in his native Britain, particularly regarding his regular denunciations of Islam in the years since the 9/11 terror attacks. But the anti-Amis brigade is suddenly attracting new recruits across the Atlantic.

Thomas Sutcliffe: A taboo subject that shouldn't be

Writing quite often gets praised for being "bold" these days, and, it hardly needs saying, it's praised for it far more often than it deserves. This isn't entirely the fault of writers, or of critics, either. The latter like to acknowledge daring and nerve – some departure from the tried-and-tested routes up the rock – but we live in an age where liberality itself provides a safety net. How to be bold when pretty much anything is permitted – in the West at least?

Book of a Lifetime: Shame, Salman Rushdie

Chronologically, Shame falls between Salman Rushdie's most acclaimed novel (Midnight's Children) and his most controversial (The Satanic Verses). It has subsequently been the most ignored by critics, as if its title predestined it to slip into the background, blushing. Fortunately I read Shame as an undergraduate, and in those 200 or so pages I witnessed nothing less than a coming-back-to-life, a resurrection that has affected me and my writing ever since. I had become like the two Marys – that biblical pair – who on Easter morning went and found the tomb empty.

Fireproof, By Raj Kamal Jha

In February 2002, in the Indian state of Gujarat, an arson attack on a train left 59 Hindus dead. Mob violence erupted across the state. (Some people have committed an atrocious crime, so hound and torture and murder some other people who had nothing to do with it: how very fair and sensible.) Around 1,000died in the violence, most of them Muslims, many of them killed with grotesque cruelty.

Which was the best Booker winner? You decide

Some of the most acclaimed novels of our times have won what is now the Man Booker Prize over the past four decades. Now, they will be pitted against each other in a battle to be "the best of the Booker", as chosen by the public.

News
US comedian Bill Mahr
people
Voices
Winston Churchill, then prime minister, outside No 10 in June 1943
voicesA C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
News
Rowan Atkinson at the wheel of his McLaren F1 GTR sports car
people
News
The artist Grayson Perry in an example of his trademark headgear
people
Sport
football
News
Tangerine Dream Edgar Froese
people
News
Rob Lowe
peopleRob Lowe hits out at Obama's snub of Benjamin Netanyahu
News
Davies (let) says: 'Everybody thought we were having an affair. It was never true!'
people'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Arts and Entertainment
Over their 20 years, the band has built a community of dedicated followers the world over
music
News
Staff assemble outside the old City Road offices in London
mediaThe stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century at Britain's youngest paper
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Dubrovnik, the Dalmatian Coast & Montenegro
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Lisbon, Oporto and the Douro Valley
Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
Spain
Prices correct as of 23 January 2015
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us