Start Magazine | Latest News

Drilon: New compensation law on vaccine victims not needed

Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon said Monday that there is no need for a new law that would ensure compensation for Filipinos who would suffer serious reactions from COVID-19 vaccines. Drilon, a former justice secretary, said there are enough laws and resources that could be used for the indemnification of those who would experience adverse effects following their immunization against the novel coronavirus disease. “The government has enough funds and there are principles under our Civil Code na nagsasabing kung negligent ang pamahalaan (if the government has been negligent in its dealings),” he said in an online interview with reporters. Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, during the Senate Committee of the Whole’s hearing on the government’s vaccination program last Friday, January 15, asked lawmakers to craft a measure that would set aside an indemnification funds for those who would have serious ailments after they were injected with COVID-19 vaccines. The compensation would depend on the severity of the side effects, he said. But Drilon said: “Hindi ko maintidihan si Secretary Duque kung ano ‘yong batas na gusto niyang gawin na hindi pa covered ng batas ngayon (I don’t understand Secretary Duque what measures he wants us to make that is still not covered by existing laws).” He mentioned the complaints filed against public officials in the so-called Dengvaxia controversy, when deaths were blamed to the dengue immunization program implemented by the government using the vaccines supplied by pharmaceutical giant Sanofi. “Wala naman pong bagong batas diyan. Ang ginagamit pa rin ‘yong batas ngayon. (No new laws were used there in those cases),” he said. Implementers of the COVID-19 inoculation program earlier said that vaccine manufacturers were reluctant to take responsibility for their products because clinical trials are still ongoing in various countries. This was also their reason for their refusal to directly negotiate with local government units and private companies. At present, regulators are issuing emergency use authorization (EUA) for the use of the coronavirus vaccines for the mass immunization program. Duque earlier assured that they would consider the specific indications of the candidate vaccines in their administration to vaccine receivers.

read more...

'Brexit carnage": shellfish lorries stack up near Downing Street

LONDON (Reuters) - At least 10 shellfish lorries parked on roads near Number 10 Downing Street and the British parliament

read more...

BB Gandanghari mourns passing of brother Royette Padilla

They weren’t that close but BB Gandanghari maintained brother Royette Padilla, who succumbed to heart attack recently, was quite protective of him. In her most recent vlog, BB recalled how Royette defended his then alter ego Rustom Padilla from being tagged as gay. She said, “Nung nagkaroon din ako ng problema nung panahon na gini-gay issue-gay issue si Rustom, sino din ang rumesbak? Sino ang rumesbak? Si Kuya Royette din.” The same thing happened she said when Robin Padilla had a misunderstanding with TV anchor Noli de Castro. According to BB, Royette went out of his way to confront Noli, challenging him to a fist fight. She said, “Hindi ko alam if he would take this as something na mangingiti siya o mababatukan niya ako. “Pero kung idi-describe kasi yung mga panahon na yun, during the ‘90s, when we were doing our own thing as actors, kami nila Robin, parang nagkaroon ng reputation si Kuya Royette na parang bilang ‘notorious.’ “Yes, people know him in a notorious way. (But) looking back, I can only attribute it to him being so protective of us.” BB lamented how he wasn’t able to talk to Royette before he passed away. Speaking as if she is talking directly to Royette, she said, “Di mo naitatanong, I wanted to talk to you before Christmas… I thought kagaya ko dito na mag-isa, baka kailangan mo lang ng kausap, kakuwentuhan, katawanan. “Siguro ‘yon yung regret ko ngayon. “Sana nabigyan lang ng pagkakataon na we can talk about things other than problems, other than what’s yung mga hinagpis na dala-dala natin… Just really enjoying the conversation.” She went on, “Sana naririnig mo, Kuya Royette, kung meron man akong gustong sabihin sa ‘yo more than anything else, kung meron man akong gustong ihingi ng tawad sa ‘yo… “Kung at one point naparamdam ko sa ‘yo ang rejection, or somehow parang ayokong makipag-communicate, sana mapatawad mo ako.”

read more...

India's Siraj says mum's pep talk made him 'mentally strong'

India bowler Mohammed Siraj revealed how a phone call with his mother and the memory of his late father spurred

read more...

Young, female and fighting corruption, a Somali lawmaker defends her seat

By Abdi Sheikh MOGADISHU (Reuters) - Amina Mohamed Abdi was just 24 when she first stood for Somalia's parliament in

read more...

China's retrieved lunar samples weigh less than targeted

BEIJING (Reuters) - Lunar rocks retrieved by a historic Chinese mission to the moon weighed less than initially targeted, but

read more...

New CDU leader lags Bavarian premier in race to succeed Merkel

BERLIN (Reuters) - Armin Laschet, the new leader of Germany's Christian Democrats, has yet to convince voters he would be

read more...

Stones 'deserves the best' says Man City boss Guardiola

Pep Guardiola says England defender John Stones "deserves the best" after he scored twice for Manchester City to underline his

read more...

Factbox: What could change under BOJ's March policy review?

TOKYO (Reuters) - The Bank of Japan is conducting a review of its policy tools to make them more sustainable,

read more...

Israel moves to rein in rights group over 'apartheid' use

Israel’s education minister says he's banning groups that call Israel an “apartheid state” from lecturing at schools

read more...

Tycoon Adani to Raise $2.5 Billion From Green Deal With Total

(Bloomberg) -- Indian billionaire Gautam Adani is raising $2.5 billion from a deal that includes the sale of a minority

read more...

Dua Lipa to release Future Nostalgia B-sides 'soon'

Dua Lipa's 'Future Nostalgia' era is set to continue after the pop star revealed she is set to release some B-sides from the album shortly.

read more...

Sinovac Steps Up Defense of Shot After Confusing Data

(Bloomberg) -- China’s Sinovac Biotech Ltd. defended the efficacy of its Covid-19 shot, saying the vaccine that’s being rolled out

read more...

Saudis vowed to stop executions for crimes committed as minors, but some death sentences remain

Five people who committed crimes in Saudi Arabia as minors have yet to have their death sentences revoked, according to two rights groups, nine months after the kingdom's Human Rights Commission (HRC) announced an end to capital punishment for juvenile offenders. The state-backed HRC in April cited a March royal decree by King Salman stipulating that individuals sentenced to death for crimes committed while minors will no longer face execution and would instead serve prison terms of up to 10 years in juvenile detention centers. The statement did not specify a timeline, but in October, in response to a report by Human Rights Watch (HRW), it said the decree had come into force immediately upon announcement. The decree was never carried on state media nor published in the official gazette as would be normal practice. In December, state news agency SPA published a list of prominent "events" of 2020 featuring several royal decrees, but the death penalty order was not included. Read more: Dramatic drop in Saudi executions after laws changed in 2020 Organisations including anti-death penalty group Reprieve, HRW and the European-Saudi Organization for Human Rights (ESOHR) as well as a group of US lawmakers have raised concerns that loopholes in Saudi law could still allow judges to impose the death sentence on juvenile offenders. One of the five has appealed and eight face charges that could result in execution, said the groups, who follow the cases closely. Reuters established the status of three of the five individuals through HRC statements but could not independently verify the other two. The government's Center for International Communications (CIC) dismissed the concerns, telling Reuters that the royal decree would be applied retroactively to all cases where an individual was sentenced to death for offenses committed under the age of 18. "The Royal Order issued in March 2020 was put into effect immediately upon its issuance and was circulated to the relevant authorities for instant implementation," the CIC said in an emailed statement. All eyes on Riyadh Saudi Arabia, whose human rights record came under global scrutiny after the 2018 murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi by Saudi agents, is one of the world's top executioners after Iran and China, rights groups say. Its de facto leader Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, known internationally as MbS, enjoyed strong support from US President Donald Trump. But President-elect Joe Biden, who takes over in the White House later this week, has described the kingdom as a "pariah" for its rights record and said he would take a tougher line. Six US lawmakers wrote to the Saudi embassy in the United States in October urging the kingdom to review all ongoing death penalty cases to identify individuals convicted for crimes committed when they were children, according to a copy of the letter seen by Reuters. One of the signatories, Democratic Rep Tom Malinowski, told Reuters in December that if the kingdom were to follow through on the execution of juvenile offenders, "it would make it even harder for Saudi Arabia to return to the kind of relationships that it wants with the United States." He added that Biden would be looking at the kingdom's human rights policies "very differently to Trump". Biden officials declined to comment for this article, but referred Reuters to an earlier statement saying the new administration would reassess US ties with Saudi Arabia. Disputed figures Ali al-Nimr and Dawood al-Marhoun were 17 when they were detained in 2012 on charges related to participating in widespread protests in the Shi'ite-majority Eastern Province. Abdullah al-Zaher was 15 when he was arrested. The three, who are among the five juvenile offenders whose death penalties have yet to be revoked, were sentenced to death by the Specialized Criminal Court and faced beheading, although the public prosecutor ordered a review of their sentences in August. The CIC said the royal decree would be applied to their cases. Their lawyers could not immediately be reached for comment. In 2018, after assuming his post in a palace coup that ousted the previous crown prince, MbS pledged to minimise the use of the death penalty as part of sweeping social reforms. But in 2019, a record number of about 185 people were executed, according to the rights groups. Reuters could not independently confirm the figures. The CIC did not comment when asked whether this figure was accurate. In a press release on Monday, the HRC said Saudi Arabia had reduced the number of executions by 85% in 2020 compared with the previous year, noting it had documented 27. Test case? In an article published last April, state-linked newspaper Okaz confirmed the existence of the royal decree, but said that the abolishment only applied to a lesser category of offence under Islamic law known as "ta'zeer". These crimes are not clearly defined in the Koran or accompanying Hadiths and so punishments are left to judges' discretion, and can amount to death. Saudi Arabia has no civil penal code that sets out sentencing rules, and no system of judicial precedent that would make the outcome of cases more predictable based on past practice. Judges could still sentence child offenders to death under the other two categories, according to Saudi Arabia's interpretation of sharia: "houdoud", or serious crimes which carry a prescribed punishment, including terrorism, and "qisas", or retribution, usually for murder, two lawyers and the rights groups said. Asked why the royal decree was never published and whether it only applies to the "ta'zeer" category of offense, the CIC declined to comment. Some defendants in protest cases have been prosecuted on terror charges. In a case watched closely by the rights groups, 18-year-old Mohammad al-Faraj was facing the death penalty even though he was 15 at the time of his arrest in 2017 for charges including participating in protests and attending related funerals, one when he was aged nine. Ahead of his next hearing scheduled for 18 January, a source close to one of the defendants in Faraj's case said the demand for a "houdoud" death sentence had recently been withdrawn and prosecutors were instead seeking the harshest punishment under "ta'zeer". The CIC said the royal decree would apply retroactively to Faraj's case, a point the HRC echoed in its press release. ESOHR expressed concern that without a published decree, the risk of capital punishment cannot be ruled out. ESOHR said Faraj was only granted a state-appointed lawyer in October, was not brought to court and was tortured in detention, allegations the CIC denied. Since the start of the pandemic, Faraj has been allowed one weekly 15-minute call to his parents, with in-person visits cancelled, a source close to the family said. Reuters was unable to independently confirm the specifics of his case. Read More

read more...

Ukraine, Hungary working on road map for settlement of bilateral relations

Ukraine and Hungary continue to work on a joint document that will help settle disputes in bilateral relations.

read more...

Sulawesi quake death toll at 84 as Indonesia battles series of disasters

JAKARTA (Reuters) - A powerful earthquake that struck Indonesia's Sulawesi island last week has killed at least 84 people and

read more...

Great deals on cars this January 2021

The car shopping season need not be limited to the holidays. This January, we’ve compiled a list of deals and promos from your favorite car brands in order to get the most bang for your buck. The offers vary from discounts, low down payment plans, freebies, and even one-day sales. Toyota Toyota makes the car purchases lighter with enticing deals and freebies on Toyota models until January 31, 2021. Get up to P70,000 discount when you purchase a new Vios, P60,000 on an Innova, and P50,000 on a Fortuner, Corolla Altis, or Hiace Commuter Deluxe. Other well-loved models such as the Wigo, Avanza, and Rush get outright cash discounts on participating variants as well. Flexible all in low down or low monthly schemes are also available on the above-mentioned models. Selected models and variants get freebies such as Periodic Maintenance up to 20K KM and/or one year comprehensive insurance, and five-year warranty for a brand new Toyota Vios G, E, or XLE. On top of these offers, customers looking to trade-in their old vehicle for a Toyota can get up to P40,000 rebate which can be used to purchase accessories or availed with other existing offers. Balloon Payment Plus, Toyota Financial Services PH’s new finance product which offers light monthly payments, Periodic Maintenance inclusion, and guaranteed resale value, is also offered for the Vios, Corolla Cross Hybrid, New Fortuner, and New Hilux. For more details visit the Toyota website. Mitsubishi Mitsubishi Motors Philippine Corporation (MMPC) welcomes 2021 with easy payment plans through the Mitsubishi Kick-start promo. Included in the offer are the Mitsubishi Mirage G4, Xpander and Montero Sport. For as low as P28K all-in downpayment, customers can avail of a brand new Mitsubishi Mirage G4. The Mitsubishi Xpander can be driven home for as low as 58K all-in DP. The Montero Sport 4×4 GT is offered with an attractive 230K cash discount or 0% interest for 36 months (Based on a 30% DP). To know more about the Mitsubishi Kick-Start Promo, inquirers are encouraged to visit Mitsubishi’s website or schedule an appointment with their preferred dealer. Promo runs from January 14 to 31, 2021. DTI Fair Trade Permit No. FTEB-111874 Series of 2021. Lexus Lexus makes owning the vehicle you’ve been dreaming of easier with flexible payment schemes. Avail of the following models with a 30% downpayment, 36-month term, and 0% interest: Lexus RX350 (SRP P4,378,000); Lexus NX 300 (SRP P3,208,000); and Lexus NX 300 F Sport (SRP P3,708,000). The following models are offered with a 30% downpayment, 24-month term and 0% interest: Lexus ES 350 (SRP P4,478,000); Lexus RX 350L (SRP P4,858,000); Lexus UX 200 (SRP P2,538,000); and Lexus UX 200 F Sport (SRP P3,108,000). To learn more about this promotion visit the Lexus website at https://fal.cn/3cBTG or visit our social media pages on Facebook and Instagram @lexusmanila To arrange a consultation with your personal sales consultant, visit the Lexus Remote page here. Honda Honda offers free one year periodic maintenance and cash discounts for BR-V customers. Until February 28, 2021, customers who purchase any variant and year model of BR-V are entitled to a free one (1) year Periodic Maintenance Service (PMS). Upon the release of their vehicle, customers will receive their 10,000-km/6th month, and 20,000-km/12th month PMS vouchers — whichever comes first. These vouchers will also contain the vehicle’s model, variant, conduction number, chassis and engine number. To claim their free PMS, customers must present each voucher to an authorized Honda car service center on their respective scheduled PMS dates, within the twelve-month period from the release date of their vehicles. The BR-V PMS program is on top of the current cash discount and financing promos available this month. Customers may enjoy this exclusive offer with the following suggested retail prices. For a 2021 BR-V 1.5 S CVT (SRP P1,038,000) customers can avail of an all-in downpayment of PhP21,000 and cash discount of PhP60,000. For a 2021 BR-V 1.5 S CVT (SRP P1,158,000) customers can avail of an all-in downpayment of PhP74,000 and cash discount of PhP10,000. Customers can also get great deals on other Honda models like: a P30,000 cash discount on the 2021 City 1.5 S CVT; P50,000 cash discount on the 2020 Civic 1.8 E CVT; P250,000 cash discount on the 2019 Mobilio 1.5 RS Navi CVT; P50,000 cash discount on the 2020 Odyssey 2.4 EX-V; and finally, a P180,000 cash discount on the 2019 Civic Type R 2.0L Turbo MT. There are also special and regular all-in low downpayment plans on the following models: P29,000 for the 2020 Brio 1.2 RS Black Top CVT; P115,000 for the 2021 CR-V S Diesel 9AT; P54,000 for the 2021 Jazz 1.5 RS Navi CVT; and P71,000 for the 2021 HR-V 1.8 E CVT. Terms and conditions apply. The BR-V Free 1-Year PMS Program is approved under Fairtrade Permit No. FTEB-111174 Series of 2020. On top of these offers, all Honda car owners who successfully register and provide their contact information (with OTP and email verification) in the microsite link of HCPI at https://hondaphil.com/raffle will get one (1) corresponding e-raffle entry for a chance to win exciting items. Honda owners may also scan the QR code link below to join instantly today! To know more about the latest Honda cars news and promos, visit the nearest Honda Cars dealership, or access Honda Cars Philippines, Inc.’s virtual showroom here. Peugeot Peugeot Philippines is staging its Roaring Weekend Sale this Friday, January 22, 2021 at the Arcovia City Grand Showroom located just across Landers Superstore along C-5, Pasig. The sale features several executive cars and a few used models up for sale at the venue and in Peugeot showrooms nationwide from Friday, January 22 through Sunday, January 24, 2021. Besides the cars on display, Peugeot Philippines is also offering significant discounts on the petrol variant of the award winning 3008 SUV. The Peugeot Roaring Weekend Sale concurrently happens in Peugeot Alabang (nomadic showroom in ATC), Peugeot Pasig, Peugeot Quezon Avenue, Peugeot Pampanga and Peugeot Iloilo. Hyundai Hyundai is starting 2021 with the Boom! Boom! Vroom! promo. Running until February 28, 2021, enjoy big and loud savings for as much as P290,000 on your favorite Hyundai vehicles. Get big savings of up to P290,000.00 on their family-first van with room for 10, the Hyundai Grand Starex. Get the compact and efficient Kona SUV with P205,000.00 in discounts. Hyundai is offering the ideal car for ride-sharing or the pasabuy business, the Accent, with savings of up to P160,000.00. Finally, the efficient and safe Reina is available with a P110,000.00 discount. Visit your nearest Hyundai dealership, log on to their website, or the Hyundai Philippines Facebook Page, to learn more about your Hyundai favorites and get big discounts. Interested buyers may request for a quote or apply for an auto loan at the Hyundai Online Market Experience page. Per DTI Fair Trade Permit No. FTEB-112039 Series of 2021. Ford Ford offers a range ofdeals in the form of cash discounts, all-in low downpayment offers, and free ownership packages for its SUVs, pickups and van. Leading the pack of its ‘Deal After Deal’ offers is for the Ford EcoSport, which is now available at a starting priceof P799,000 or P23,000 all-in low downpayment. The new suggested retail price of a Ford EcoSport Trend is P938,000 with a cash discount of P139,000. Great deals are also extended to bigger Ford SUVs, such as cash discounts of up to P100,000 for the Ford Everest and 0% interest up to 60 months at 20% downpayment offer for a Ford Expedition. Customers looking for a pickup can also avail of special offers for the Ford Ranger, which is available with cash discounts of up to P90,000 or pay as low as P88,000 all-in low downpayment. The Ford Ranger starting price remains at P943,000. Meanwhile, the Ranger Raptor still comes with the Raptor Premium Care Package inclusive of a free 5-Year scheduled service plan, 5-Year warranty (from 3 years), and 5-Year emergency roadside assistance. The 15-seater Ford Transit van is also now available at P1,799,000 with a free 5-year scheduled service plan, coming from a new SRP of P1,999,000 with a P200,000 cash discount. All deals are available until January 31, 2021. To know more about the ‘Deal After Deal’ offers, visit this site or any Ford dealership nearest you. Mercedes-Benz Drive into the New Year with a brand new Mercedes-Benz. Mercedes-Benz Philippines welcomes the new year with great deals and savings. Available for the month of January only are savings as much as Php600,000 on the E 200 AMG, and Php 400,000 off on the V-Class and a lot more. Head to any Mercedes-Benz showroom near you – in Edsa Greenhills, Bonifacio Global City, Alabang or Cebu City to check great deals on other units – CLA, C-Class, S-Class, Maybach and more. Or you may visit the website today to know more. Special deals are up until January 31, 2021. Subaru Subaru welcomes 2021 with awesome deals and worry-free ownership for the Forester and XV. On top of the cash discounts available for all variants of the Subaru Forester and all variants of the Subaru XV, Subaru is throwing in an additional Php 50,000 service voucher to purchases of the said models. This voucher can be used for preventive maintenance service (PMS, approx. equivalent of 2 years worth), parts, or other outlet-based Services and Labor. This special deal also comes on top of the standard 5-year warranty for purchases of new Subaru vehicles. Special deals for other Subaru models such as the BRZ and WRX will also be available. Subaru PH is also extending service operations by opening its doors for service during Sundays at selected outlets – namely Greenhills, Pasig and Manila Bay from 7:30am to 5:30pm. Setting an appointment in advance here is recommended to ensure your safety and convenience.

read more...

From Queenie to The Mating Season, 15 books to help you beat the January blues

Two years ago, I published a list of comfort reading to beat the drab January blues. Little did I know that winter 2019 was a golden nirvana, a halcyon period when you could meet a friend for a drink, blast out your problems in the gym, soothe your soul in an art gallery, or do something really crazy like hug your granny without feeling like Harold Shipman. For reasons that are all too obvious, now feels like the right time to revisit this list. As I wrote before, comfort reading doesn’t mean junk reading. This is not the cheap white bread of the literary world. There are some books that have it all, as beautifully written and thought-provoking as they are life-affirming. Over time, I’ve built up a collection of books that I turn to whenever I’m struggling, and that I give to friends instead of flowers or chocolates if they’re dealing with anything from sickness to heartbreak or bereavement. The soothing power of literature is well documented – there’s a reason shell-shocked soldiers were prescribed Jane Austen. She also works if you’re stressed, insecure and awake approximately 73 times a night feeding a newborn. Books take you away from your own thoughts in a quieter way than Netflix binges, giving you space to simultaneously rest your mind and stretch your imagination. Add the specific kind of dry humour or madcap whimsy that so many English-language writers excel at and you have the perfect lockdown solace. Here’s my updated, uplifting selection. We may earn commission from some of the links in this article, but we never allow this to influence our content. This revenue helps to fund journalism across The Independent Lucky Jim, Kingsley Amis Fact: it is impossible to read Lucky Jim while eating a bowl of cornflakes without spraying them across your kitchen wall. Amis’s spoof of the academic life is uproariously funny. The eponymous Jim Dixon is an unimpressive junior lecturer clinging to a job with a pompous professor he loathes. The set piece that ensues when he is invited to his professor’s fussy home, passes out drunk with a cigarette in his hand then tries to cover up the damage to the guest bedroom is farce of the first order. Mansfield Park, Jane Austen Yes, Fanny Price is the sappiest heroine to wear a spotted muslin gown, but there is something irresistibly reassuring in this classic triumph of the underdog tale. Plucked from her own family to live with her aristocratic relatives, the meek and worthy Miss Price sticks to her values and finally comes into her own. Revel in Austen’s timeless and gently barbed prose, and sigh with contentment as the noisome Aunt Norris gets her comeuppance. Anxious People, Fredrik Backman Trap seven strangers at an apartment viewing with a scatty estate agent and an inept armed bank robber, and what do you get? The world’s most charmingly addictive hostage drama, translated from the original Swedish of the best-selling author Fredrik Backman. Part reflection on the failings of late-stage capitalism, part meditation on what binds people together or makes them fall apart, it is entirely heart-warming and hilarious. Queenie, Candice Carty-Williams It's hard not to fall for the self-defeating heroine of this novel, which the publisher describes as “Bridget Jones’s Diary meets Americanah”. A dubious love life, a gynaecological exam, an insecure career, the gentrification of south London, and toxic racial stereotypes are all rich seams for Carty-Williams’s comic exploration. This is a frank, funny and important portrayal of how young Black women experience the word in the time of Black Lives Matter. Diary of a Provincial Lady, EM Delafield Before there was Bridget Jones, there was Delafield’s provincial lady, cataloguing her struggles with supercilious neighbours, a distracted husband and unforthcoming hyacinth bulbs. The home counties domesticity may be a creation of the 1930s, but some things are eternal, from the mixture of joy and tedium that is parenting, to the jolt of horror when you catch your reflection unawares in the mirror of a changing room. Ordinary People, Diana Evans There’s consolation in the idea that all people suffer a bout of midlife malaise, even fantastically glamorous and attractive people like the power couple at the heart of Diana Evans’s novel. As the fizz and spontaneity of young love turns into the relentless treadmill of parenthood, Evans spins comedy and pathos from the way “ordinary people” struggle to adjust. Laced with sensitive insights on how men and women tend to experience these challenges differently, it will also make you feel better about living in your pyjamas on the sofa. Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbons Never mind meditation apps: if you’re feeling frayed around the edges, just channel your inner Flora Poste. In this 1932 spoof of rural melodrama, a preternaturally poised young woman takes on a sprawling, dysfunctional family and leads them gently in the direction of sanity and hygiene. With humour this sardonic you can forgive the shamelessly romantic ending that is the unflappable Flora’s just dessert. The Humans, Matt Haig Ever feel like you don’t quite belong? Well, at least you’re not an alien sent to Earth to assassinate a mathematics professor before his breakthrough gives “the humans” technological powers they are clearly too stupid and violent to wield. This is an unusual and totally endearing novel. The set-up provides sniggering slapstick – like when the naked extra-terrestrial narrator concludes that the appropriate way to greet a human is to spit on them – as well as nuanced insights on what it means to be an Earthling. Tales of the City, Armistead Maupin Mary Ann Singleton is an ingenue with a steely core who gets the awakening of her life when she quits staid Cleveland for the San Francisco of the late Seventies. From rollerskating gay nuns to a landlady who tapes a joint to your door in times of need, it’s a world you will not want to leave. Originally written in serial form as a newspaper column, this won’t let you catch your breath between the cliff-hangers – or stop laughing – until you’ve worked your way through the whole series. Not Working, Lisa Owens For anyone in the grips of a quarter-life crisis, this debut novel is comic gold. The frustrated millennial narrator quits her job because there must be more to life than marketing novelty vodka. The trouble is, she’s not sure what. To make matters worse, while she fails to find an answer, get fit or read Proust, her boyfriend is a life-saving brain surgeon. The diary format may be quick to guzzle, but the smart insights on the hunt for purpose ring so true they linger. Dear Mrs Bird, AJ Pearce Anyone home-schooling will need to summon up the Blitz spirit, and this romp through war-time London is awash with the stuff. Miss Emmeline Lake wants to be a war correspondent, but ends up filling in for a stuffy agony aunt whose list of unmentionable subjects “is not exclusive and will be added to when required”. Naturally, Emmeline starts to break taboos and confront the female war experience in a way that feels touching and timely. A sterling read to stiffen those wobbling upper lips. The Rosie Project, Graeme Simsion A successful relationship usually means adjusting to how someone else sees the world. This is more of a challenge when that someone is Don Tillman, who cooks exactly the same thing every week according to The Standardised Meal System, calculates everyone's BMI on first glance, and decides to find a wife by distributing a questionnaire. Enter chaos in the form of Rosie, who meets none of the criteria but nonetheless, well, ticks his box. Beneath the fun and the fluff there is a quietly profound exploration of the assumptions around autism and what it means to have an atypical – or a typical – brain. Adrian Mole: The Prostrate Years, Sue Townsend Sue Townsend was simply one of the funniest writers who ever wore socks, and her Adrian Mole series is a satirical gem that follows her hapless protagonist from adolescence to middle age, revealing some sharp home truths about British society in the process. At thirty-nine and a half, Adrian is convinced he’s too young to have prostate problems. He’s wrong. If anyone can shake a comic fist at cancer, it’s Townsend. A Gentleman in Moscow, Amor Towles It’s hard not to fall in love with Count Rostov, an impeccably mannered and mischievous aesthete placed under permanent house arrest at Moscow’s Metropol hotel. The hotel is a gilded cage, the novel the story of Rostov’s journey to despair and back against the backdrop of Russia’s political tumult. An endearing and frequently hilarious novel that covers big topics with a velvet touch. The Mating Season, PG Wodehouse Feeling down because your love life just died in a ditch? It could be worse. You could be Bertie Wooster, inadvertently engaged to Madeleine Bassett, who thinks that the stars are God’s daisy chain. It’s hard to single out one PG Wodehouse book as the entire Jeeves and Wooster collection is Bach Rescue Remedy in literary form, but this tale of romantic imbroglio is a priceless hoot. Aunts loom large, but so, fortuitously, does the all-conquering butler Jeeves. Every sentence is a perfectly wrought delight. Read More

read more...

Malaysia Unveils $3.7 Billion Package as Covid Cases Surge

(Bloomberg) -- Follow Bloomberg on LINE messenger for all the business news and analysis you need. Malaysia unveiled a 15

read more...

The Latest: Britain to expand vaccination to next age group

Britain is to expand the rollout of its coronavirus vaccine program by offering jabs to those over the age of 70 in areas where those deemed to be the most vulnerable have already received their first dose

read more...

WayV's Lucas, Xiaojun and Kun call out 'sasaengs' for invading privacy, fans ask SM Entertainment to protect idols

After Lucas, Kun and Xiaojun shared images of some stalkers called ‘sasaengs’, invading their privacy and rudely taking up-close snapshots of the boys

read more...

Stellantis shares rise on debut in Milan and Paris

MILAN (Reuters) - Shares in Stellantis rose as much as 7.5% on their first trading day on Monday, after the

read more...

Army says NPA guerrilla captured after clash in Borongan

BORONGAN CITY—Government soldiers arrested an alleged communist guerrilla and seized explosives and firearms after a 30-minute clash at a village here on Sunday (Jan. 17).The 78th Infantry Warriors Battalion identified the arrested rebel suspect as Bienvenido Abagancia, resident of Layo Pinabacdao in Samar province.The military seized four homemade bombs, a homemade rifle, a homemade .38 caliber revolver, 16 M-16 magazines, an M-14 magazine, ammunition, backpacks and personal belongings.Lt. Col Alvior, commander of the Philippine National Army 78th IB, lauded residents for their help in locating rebel positions.Alvior appealed to members of New People’s Army (NPA) to

read more...

NIN Registration centres in Abuja: How to check if your NIN don successfully link to your MTN, Glo, Airtel, 9mobile SIM

National Identity Management Commission, NIMC go verify all di updates and your mobile network go later send message say your update dey successful

read more...

Covid Lockdowns Are Spreading a Year After China Shocked World

(Bloomberg) -- A year after the lockdown imposed in the Chinese city of Wuhan shocked the world, the tactic is

read more...
NEXT PAGE