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.

Postcard from... Rome

’Ndrangheta, the Italian crime syndicate that has overtaken Cosa Nostra as Italy’s most powerful mafia organisation, moves in mysterious ways.

Etna's last major eruption was in 1992

Europe's most active volcano Mount Etna erupts

Mount Etna, Europe's biggest and most active volcano, has erupted again, showering volcanic ash on towns dotting the mountain's slopes and nearby Taormina on the island of Sicily.

Mount Etna erupted for the 16th time this year on Sunday sending plumes of ash and streams of lava high into the sky

Video: Mount Etna erupts and lights up the dark sky

Mount Etna erupted for the 16th time this year on late Saturday and Sunday morning sending plumes of ash and streams of lava high into the sky over much of eastern Sicily.

Italian soldiers with the bodies of migrants killed off Lampedusa

Lampedusa migrant boat disaster: Tunisian suspected of causing shipwreck is arrested by Italian police

35-year-old detained after witnesses in refugee centre claim he was captain who started fatal fire on vessel

Italy boat wreck: Hundreds of migrants feared dead after ship sinks off Lampedusa coast

Migrants were crammed into small vessel that caught fire close to the coast of Italy

Travel challenge

Sicily in September

Rob Auton, the winner of Daveís Funniest Joke of the Fringe award.

Edinburgh 2013: Former salesman Rob Auton raises bar with Cadbury gag to win funniest joke of the year award

Funniest joke prize taken by 30-year-old Rob Auton – and his Chinese Wispa

Sicily: Bulgarian tourist killed in road accident is buried without family's knowledge after authorities mistake him for illegal African immigrant

Stoyan Zafirova's parents only learnt he had been run over by a car a week after the accident occurred

Domenico Rancadore appears before Westminster Magistrates court

Uxbridge fugitive Mafia boss could walk out of court today if bail is granted

Judge has expressed concerns over the warrant used in his arrest

Ian Austin said that Peter Mandelson is 'the best in the business'

Ed Miliband told: Send for Peter Mandelson as Labour's election strategist

Ian Austin, a former aide to Gordon Brown, posted tweet after the Conservatives poached Barack Obama's campaign chief, Jim Messina, for the 2015 battle

The Hercules statue at the mountain park Bergpark Wilhelmshoehe in Kassel

Postcard from... Kassel

Roberto Pannunzi was escorted by police upon his arrival at Leonardo da Vinci airport in Rome

'Biggest cocaine importer in world' Roberto Pannunzi jailed in Italy after extradition from Colombia

A man described as Europe’s most wanted drug trafficker and Italy’s answer to Pablo Escobar was on Sunday night languishing in an Italian jail, after being extradited from Colombia.

Review: Time On My Hands, By Giorgio Vasta (Trs by Jonathan Hunt)

Tiny terrorists take the road to revolution

Wine: Something for the weekend

Night in

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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
War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

How we met

Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
The Last Word: From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015

Michael Calvin's Last Word

From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015