from the magazine

They command spectacular pricesbut is a chair designed by an architect really any better than one by a furniture designer? Ruth Metzstein talks to the people putting bums on seats

Notes on a Voice: Charlie McCann is kept awake by "romptious" prose that revels in mess and mischief

Education: more playful than school, more democratic than the theatre, Coney makes things happen to people of all ages. Irving Wardle joins them

Cartophilia: more than a pretty picture, this hand-drawn map of the ocean floor changed a way of thinking. Simon Willis explains

Theme of the Week: A Sense of Adventure

Danger is booming—as a pastime. Are we crazy? Or just reacting against mollycoddling? Deirdre Fernand talks to risk-takers and academics

Ultra—extreme distance trail running—is so taxing that many competitors don't show up. Todd Pitock meets its leading exponent

Kassia St Clair meets Mike Horn, who swam the Amazon and circled the Equator

The Big Question: the biographer Richard Holmes experiences "a second childhood" as he travels from A to Bor, more often than not, X

  • A GAME YOU CAN FINISH

    A Game, a Gadget and an App: Tom Standage steers a princess through Escher-like puzzles, charges his phone on the move and joins a small but fast-growing community read more »
  • THE 21ST-CENTURY COWBOY

    The modern cowboy has a lot on his plate, including climate change. Ariel Ramchandani stays on a ranch high in the Colorado desert  read more »
  • GOOD GIRL GONE GREAT

    Short Read: for her theatre highlight, Isabel Lloyd picks Gillian Anderson as a crumpled Southern belle read more »
  • NIGEL SLATER'S FINE INGREDIENTS

    Eat Their Words: Josie Delap relishes a no-nonsense approach to cooking that believes anyone can make something good read more »
  • DIGGING THE DANCING CRANE

    Where the Wild Things Are: for this elegant bird, romance is for life and all its world is a stage. Patrick Morris watches a Japanese icon put on a show read more »
  • SINGULAR POLISH MOMENTS

    The Wine-List Inspector: Poland's first Michelin-starred restaurant offers Tim Atkin a nice glass of Merlot with his spare rib
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  • THE PAINTINGS OF PENZANCE

    Authors on Museums: small and intimate, Penlee House is a gallery in tune with its Cornish setting—and the weather. For Jim Crace, it has even become central to his marriage read more »
  • BORN AGAIN, STILL ON THE CELLO

    Short Read: for his classical music highlight, Michael Church picks a cellist who had to teach himself a second time read more »
  • SOUNDING OUT HEADPHONES

    The Sceptical Shopper: over-priced accessory, or a must for the music lover? Our undercover expert tests Beats and its rivals read more »
  • TIM SMIT'S SEVEN WONDERS

    Dutch-born, English-educated, Tim Smit was an archaeologist and a record producer before moving to Cornwall, restoring the Lost Gardens of Heligan and dreaming up the Eden Project. Now 59, he dislikes flying but still gets to some far-flung places read more »