How to Not Screw Up Your 2024 Campaign Song: A Primer

elegating music choices to the youngest person on your campaign team might seem like a good idea. It’s not. Ignore the Billboard Hot 100, and pick songs you actually listen to — or at least songs that voters will believe you actually listen to. “Your first instinct might be, pick a song that’s relatable to young people or something. But that’ll just miss the mark and it’ll feel inauthentic,” says Rachel Kopilow, vice president and creative director at the campaign consultancy group Blue State.

What we’re reading: writers and readers on the books they enjoyed in May

In this series we ask authors, Guardian writers and readers to share what they have been reading recently. This month, recommendations include a tear-jerking novel, stories of female friendship and a gamechanging guide to the way we eat. Tell us in the comments what you have been reading. I’m not really someone who cries a lot, I wish I cried more. I often want to, but the tears just never flow. Yet when I finished an advance reading copy of Bellies by Nicola Dinan I had to sit down and let mys

Chamber of horrors: the best and worst Westminster insider novels

From hostile briefings and spad skulduggery to extramarital sex, there’s never been any shortage of bad behaviour in Westminster. But political scandal also makes brilliant fodder for novels. Corrupt, egomaniacal characters are natural-born protagonists. The historic corridors of parliament provide a cloistered, detail-rich setting. A culture of secrecy creates inevitable tension and intrigue. None of this goes unnoticed by the leagues of politicians, aides and journalists who pass through the s

‘Beowulf is lit AF’ – could ChatGPT really write good book blurbs?

“Blurb writing is a mini art form,” Iris Murdoch once wrote in a letter to former Penguin blurb writer Elizabeth Buchan. And like many other art forms, companies have been experimenting with the idea that it could be created without an artist. A German company that provides digital book distribution and marketing services to publishers has announced it will integrate ChatGPT, a chatbot that answers questions by drawing on publicly available internet data, into its software. “During the beta ph

Arinze Ifeakandu wins Dylan Thomas prize for ‘kaleidoscopic reflection of queer life in Nigeria’

The 28-year-old writer Arinze Ifeakandu has won the £20,000 Swansea University Dylan Thomas prize for a “kaleidoscopic reflection of queer life and love in Nigeria”. The prize, which recognises literary works by authors aged 39 or under, is one of the most prestigious awards for young writers. Ifeakandu’s debut short story collection, God’s Children Are Little Broken Things, features nine stories that examine queer love, family and loneliness against the backdrop of Nigerian society. The chai

Anthony Anaxagorou wins Ondaatje prize for collection of postcolonial poetry

The poet Anthony Anaxagorou has won the £10,000 Ondaatje prize for a “beautiful” collection “that pushes the confines of form and language to locate a new aesthetic with which to address the legacies of colonisation”. The award, run annually by the Royal Society of Literature, recognises an outstanding work of fiction, nonfiction or poetry that evokes a sense of place. Anaxagorou was awarded the prize for Heritage Aesthetics, a poetry collection that looks at time and place in its exploration o

Charles, William and Kate greet people outside Buckingham Palace – as it happened

Speaking of the Guardian’s attitude to the coronation and the monarchy in general, that was the topic of an editorial in print today. Here is an extract: The coronation is certainly not taking place because of public demand or enthusiasm for the monarchy or the new king. A mere 9% of British adults say that they care “a great deal” about this weekend’s events. Only 7% describe themselves as committed royalists, willing to give uncritical support to the monarchy. It seems gratuitous to be paying

Illustrated children’s biography of King Charles hits No 1 on UK book chart

A children’s biography of King Charles III has topped the UK book chart before the coronation on 6 May. Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara’s King Charles is part of the Little People, Big Dreams series, which includes illustrated biographies of notable figures such as Stephen Hawking and Michelle Obama. The nonfiction book, illustrated by Matt Hunt, is the first of the Little People, Big Dreams series to reach No 1. It sold 15,786 copies in the seven days to 29 April, overtaking Marian Keyes’ novel A

My mum’s death was slow and painful – she deserved the choice to end her life

“Desperate for mum to die,” I texted my boyfriend in early March 2020. By then my mother, Mary-Anne, had spent months in a nursing home after two years of hospital treatments, surgeries, a ketogenic diet and a daily melange of drugs – all attempts to beat her brain cancer. As her mobility decreased, my family were grateful to be allocated NHS funding for a bed in a local nursing home. Yet we soon discovered the lousy realities of end-of-life services in England: nursing homes are vastly ill equ

Segregated Classrooms, Single-Parent Picnics and Overwhelmed Maternity Wards

After Kabul fell to the Taliban on August 15, 2021, Western media assigned the group a new moniker: “Taliban 2.0.” Indeed, the Islamic fundamentalist group that had ruled Afghanistan in the latter half of the ’90s — overseeing a theocratic regime that repressed women, religious minorities and political opponents — promised to form an “open, inclusive Islamic government” and that women were “going to be very active in the society.”
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