Jane Austen at 200: still a friend and a stranger

As the anniversary of her death approaches, Jane Austen and her work will be celebrated across the country. Lucy Worsley explores why such a well-loved author remains so mysterious“Downright nonsense” was the verdict of Mrs Augusta Bramston, a Hampshire friend and neighbour of the Austen family, on reading . In 1814, Jane Austen published , a sophisticated study of love and family life. Mrs...

January 14, 2017, 12:00
Get Control of Sugar Now! by Paul McKenna – digested read | John Crace

‘Here’s my patented Craving Buster: imagine a food that revolts you, mix it with cat poo, then picture it when you crave sugar’Inside the cover of this book is a CD. Please use it carefully, as it contains vital techniques of mind control. It is so powerful that I play it to my publishers every year – and each time they forget that I have already written 10 books for them promising to...

January 15, 2017, 18:00
Xiaolu Guo: ‘There was no private or personal space in China’

The writer and film-maker on the hardships of growing up in communist China and the shock of discovering artistic freedomXiaolu Guo is a Chinese writer and film-maker based in London. She was named one of Granta’s best young British novelists in 2013, and has been shortlisted for the Orange prize. Her memoir, Once Upon a Time in the East, is published this month.Your memoir begins with you, as...

January 15, 2017, 9:00
Nobel prize winner Svetlana Alexievich quits 'shameful' Russian PEN

Author of acclaimed reportage joins 30 other writers leaving after expulsion of jailed journalist Sergey Parkhomenko in ‘craven violation of PEN’s founding ideals’Nobel prize winner Svetlana Alexievich has quit the Russian PEN centre to protest against the expulsion of journalist and activist Sergey Parkhomenko, joining 30 other writers including novelist Boris Akunin and poet Lev...

January 14, 2017, 9:00
When Breath Becomes Air review - a surgeon’s life cut short

Paul Kalanithi’s memoir, written after he was diagnosed with terminal cancer, is rich, literary and poignantIf there was one thing neurologist Paul Kalanithi didn’t want to be when he was a boy growing up in the desert town of Kingman, Arizona, it was a doctor. He dreamed of being a writer, and immersed himself in Dickens and Whitman. When he went to college it was to study literature; and,...

January 15, 2017, 12:00
Mária Ďuríčková: Jožko Mrkvička Spáč Mária Ďuríčková: Jožko Mrkvička Spáč

Jožko Mrkvička Spáč je veselá a neobyčajná knižka o príhodách žiačika Jožka Mrkvičku a jeho zápasoch s pravopisom.

January 14, 2017, 5:37
Peter Pečonka: Svätý mäsiar zo Šamorína... Peter Pečonka: Svätý mäsiar zo Šamorína...

Slovensko-maďarské vzťahy sú občas napäté, občas ostentatívne vrúcne, zazneli aj výzvy do tankoch.

January 14, 2017, 5:37
Ivan Lesay: A-KO-ŽE Ivan Lesay: A-KO-ŽE

Tieto príbehy sa naozaj stali. Teda, nestali sa úplne v skutočnosti, ale iba a-ko-že – vo fantázii.

January 14, 2017, 5:37
The Massacre of Mankind by Stephen Baxter review – the Martians are back

This official sequel to HG Wells’s The War of the Worlds is impressive but raises one key question: how did those tripods actually walk?“Authorised by the HG Wells Estate”, trumpets the cover of Stephen Baxter’s . Since Wells’s works all came out of copyright in 2016, this is not a legal requirement on behalf of the publisher; nonetheless, the imprimatur is fitting. I can’t think of...

January 14, 2017, 8:30
Winifred Holtby: author, feminist, campaigner

She wrote the great 1930s Yorkshire novel South Riding, foresaw ‘mansplaining’ and called for a new personal pronoun for women – all in a tragically short lifeWalk into the Hull History Centre, fill in a request slip, and a few minutes later you can hold the original manuscript of Winifred Holtby’s great 1936 novel in your hands. In two fat, bound volumes of her curly yet legible script,...

January 14, 2017, 10:00