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Stephen King slams ‘Twilight’ franchise as ‘tweenage porn’

Bestselling horror novelist dismisses Stephenie Meyer series and 50 Shades phenomenon, but praises JK Rowling Stephen King, the prolific and best-selling patriarch of the horror novel, has used a rare interview to express disdain for modern pretenders to his title, dismissing the Twilight franchise as “tweenager porn” and calling The…

China will negotiate on nationalized islands if Japan admits they’re in dispute

China said Friday that it was ready to talk to Japan over an increasingly heated maritime row, but only if Tokyo declares the islands to be disputed. Foreign Minister Wang Yi faced questions about ties with the U.S. ally during a visit to Washington, where he called for mutual respect…

New book reveals: Queen Elizabeth’s a major dog person

Queen Elizabeth II is so fond of her corgis that she personally supervises their daily meal and pours the gravy for them herself, according to a new book on British royal pets since the 16th century. “Pets by Royal Appointment”, by author Brian Hoey, who has written about Buckingham Palace…

Biden emphasizes trade in trip to Mexico

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden touted immigration reform and trade with Mexico during talks with President Enrique Pena Nieto in Mexico City on Friday, skirting a thorny spying scandal. Visiting the southern neighbor four months after U.S. President Barack Obama, Biden sought to put the focus again on economic ties…

Researchers brace for latest corporate push questioning climate change

Climate change summit braced for counterblast from sceptics as report warns greenhouse gas emissions still increasing Big companies are paying contrarians to undermine the work of climate scientists, according to a top UN official speaking before the release of a landmark review of climate science this weekby international researchers next…

Apple CEO joins Twitter amid rush for new iPhones

Apple chief executive Tim Cook joined Twitter on Friday, as huge crowds formed around the world to buy up the California giant’s two new iPhones. In his first tweet, Cook described his visit to customers waiting for iPhones near the company’s headquarters. “Visited Retail Stores in Palo Alto today. Seeing…

Moroccan rights groups move to challenge repressive police

Moroccan rights groups move to challenge repressive police (via The Christian Science Monitor) Human right s groups have demanded a judicial investigation into why Moroccan police violently broke up a protest last month, in a unusually defiant move against the country’s increasingly repressive security forces. A total of 22 rights…

France proposes taxing data transferred out of EU

France has proposed the European Union study taxing companies for transferring personal data outside of the bloc, for example in call centres abroad. The proposal is part of a series France has made ahead of an EU summit next month that also includes a call to put in place new…

‘Northampton Clown’ terrifies British town for ‘harmless fun’

A mysterious clown dressed like the malevolent character from the Stephen King novel “It” has been scaring residents with random appearances in the British town of Northampton. The “Northampton Clown”, whose identity remains unknown, said on Friday that the bizarre behaviour involving posting pictures of himself around the town was…

U.S. markets slide as government budget battle mounts

U.S. markets slid Friday, giving up much of the gains made on the Federal Reserve’s no-taper decision, as the country girded for a disruptive Washington budget and debt showdown. At the closing bell the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 181.09 points (1.16 percent) at 15,455.56. The broad-based S&P 500…

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