Ten unmissable long reads from 2017
My idol turned out to be my sister
Aerial performer Jennifer Bricker was born without legs, but she never let it stop her. By the age of 11 she was a gymnastics champion - having fallen in love with the sport after watching Dominique Moceanu win a gold medal for the US at the 1996 Olympics. And it turned out the two had a lot more in common than athletic talent.
The dog who saved my life and came to live with me
Jeff De Young served in Afghanistan with a bomb-detection dog named Cena N641, a black Labrador. In the intense atmosphere of war the two developed an unbreakable bond. This is the story of how Cena helped Jeff survive not only war, but also life after war.
I was a neo-Nazi until I fell in love with a black woman
She was a violent white supremacist. But an encounter in prison changed her life forever.
Listen: Covering my racist tattoos
The extraordinary life of a 91-year-old beauty queen
Krystyna Farley is a 91-year-old beauty pageant queen in the US state of Connecticut, but her life was not always this glamorous. Although she grew up in a loving home in rural Poland, her childhood was cut short by the outbreak of war.
The horse that saved his own life by painting
How an autistic child became world pinball champion
Pinball champion Robert Gagno says having autism has made him a better player. But it's also true that playing pinball has helped him live with autism.
How one man built a $51m theme park for his daughter
A father from Texas realised there were no theme parks where his disabled daughter could play. So he decided to build one.
How I saved big cats by introducing ‘magic dogs’
My son died in 1994 but his heart only stopped beating this year
On the night of 29 September 1994, seven-year-old Nicholas Green was fatally shot during a family holiday in southern Italy. The death was a tragedy for his parents, Reg and Maggie, but their decision to donate his organs caused organ donation rates in Italy to triple in a decade - a result dubbed the "Nicholas effect".
The jockey who raced again after reading his own obituary
When National Hunt jockey Declan Murphy suffered a disastrous fall at Haydock Park in 1994, after winning all the major races that season, the Racing Post published his obituary. But as he explains here, a furious determination got him back in the saddle.
Listen: The jockey who cheated death