Welcome to the weekend. Monday marked D-Day for single-use plastic shopping bags in New Zealand, with new regulations banning businesses from providing them from to customers.
Meanwhile wild weather caused havoc in central Auckland, blowing a large panel off an apartment building causing the closure of a central road.
It's been a very different story in other parts of the world however, with Europe feeling the heat as temperatures soar to record highs.
It's also been all go for sports fans this week with the Black Caps narrowly making Cricket World Cup semis and teen sensation Cori Gauff delighting at Wimbledon.
So if you're looking forward to staying indoors this weekend and catching some of the sporting action, here's some of the great journalism from our premium international syndicators to keep you entertained in between overs.
Genealogy sites have helped identify suspects. Now they've helped convict one
It has been used to identify more than 40 murder and rape suspects in cases as much as a half-century old. It has led to guilty pleas and confessions, including in one case where another man was convicted of the crime.
Genetic genealogy — in which DNA samples are used to find relatives of suspects, and eventually the suspects themselves — has redefined the cutting edge of forensic science, solving the type of cases that haunt detectives most: the killing of a schoolteacher 27 years ago, an assault on a 71-year-old church organ player, the rape and murder of dozens of California residents by a man who became known as the Golden State Killer.
But until a trial last month in the 1987 murder of a young Canadian couple, it had never been tested in court.
Fake doctor who slaughtered family freed after 26 years behind bars
At 4am on Monday January 11, 1993, firefighters were called to Prévessin-Moëns, a well-to-do French village close to the Swiss border, after neighbours reported flames coming from the home of Dr Jean-Claude Romand. The scene that greeted them inside the house was heart-rending: Romand's wife and their children lay dead upstairs. Romand was unconscious but still had a pulse.
It soon became clear however that all was not what it seemed.
It was discovered that Romand faked a career as a doctor in France for nearly two decades. As the truth began to catch up with him, he slaughtered his wife, his children, his parents and the family dog. Now after 26 years he is being freed. Can he ever be trusted again?
Vladimir Putin says liberalism has 'become obsolete'
Vladimir Putin has trumpeted the growth of national populist movements in Europe and America, crowing that liberalism is spent as an ideological force.
In a Financial Times interview in the Kremlin, the Russian president said "the liberal idea" had "outlived its purpose" as the public turned against immigration, open borders and multiculturalism.
10 medical myths we should stop believing
You might assume that standard medical advice was supported by mounds of scientific research. But researchers recently discovered that nearly 400 routine practices were flatly contradicted by studies published in leading journals.
"Very smart and well-intentioned people came to practice these things for many, many years. But they were wrong," said Dr Vinay Prasad of Oregon Health and Science University.
Some of those ideas have been firmly dislodged, but not all.
Subway got too big. Franchises paid a price
Manoj Tripathi couldn't shake the feeling that someone had a vendetta against his Subway sandwich shop. A franchisee for nearly two decades, he had done everything he could to keep his restaurant in perfect condition. But lately it seemed like someone was out to get him.
Tripathi wasn't paranoid, someone really was out to get him.
Sabotaged meatballs. The wrong soap. Franchisees say supervisors manipulated inspections — then took their stores. A company 'hit man' says it's true.
Teen accused of rape deserves leniency because he's from 'good family': Judge
The 16-year-old girl was visibly intoxicated, her speech slurred, when a drunk 16-year-old boy sexually assaulted her in a dark basement during an alcohol-fueled pajama party in New Jersey, prosecutors said.
The boy filmed himself penetrating her from behind, her torso exposed, her head hanging down, prosecutors said. He later shared the cellphone video among friends, investigators said, and sent a text that said, "When your first time having sex was rape."
But a family court judge said it was not rape. Instead, he wondered aloud if it was sexual assault, defining rape as something reserved for an attack at gunpoint by strangers.
Drink a pint, do your bit for food waste
In all his years in the beer industry, Keith McAvoy had never taken much professional interest in Coco Pops.
From time to time, McAvoy, who runs the craft brewery Seven Bros in Manchester, England, would raid his children's supply of the chocolate-flavoured breakfast cereal for "a cheeky bowl" or two — though only, he said, "when nobody was looking".
Recently, however, Coco Pops have become more than a guilty pleasure for McAvoy. For the past seven months, Seven Bros has been using breakfast cereal to make beer.
Town where Josef Stalin is a tourist magnet
David Segel of the New York Times visits the Stalin Museum in Gori, the small Georgian town where the former Soviet leader was born.
The tone throughout the museum is admiring, Segel reports, a stirring narrative about a poor kid who, against long odds and despite numerous stints in czarist prisons, soared to the heights of power. The floors have red carpets. Stalin's death mask rests on a marble stand, like a beloved leader, lying in state.
There is no reference to the gulag, the system of slave camps and prisons that claimed more than 1 million lives. Nor is there a peep about the Great Terror, Stalin's campaign of purges and executions in the 1930s.
Melting Greenland is awash with sand
As Greenland warms and its ice sheet melts, sediment pours out along with the water. That might help meet a growing worldwide demand for sand.
Henry Fountain and Ben C. Solomon of The New York Times travelled to Greenland to experience the changing landscape.
The need to diversify the economy is a big issue in Greenland, where fishing accounts for about 90 per cent of exports and Denmark provides nearly half the government's budget through a block grant.
A large sand-exporting industry could help reduce this subsidy, which would be critical to Greenland eventually becoming independent.
Blockbuster machine: How Marvel redefined the franchise movie
In just a decade Marvel Studios has redefined the franchise movie. Its 22 films have grossed some US$17 billion — more than any other movie franchise in history. At the same time, they receive an average of 64 nominations and awards per movie.
How and why does Marvel succeed in blending continuity and renewal?
Billionaire opens up on prison days, being pardoned by Trump
He was, in his own words, a 'staggeringly rich' businessman and newspaper magnate, who went to prison for a multimillion dollar fraud conviction in 2007. He has kept a low profile ever since. Then six weeks ago he received a call from the president...