Philip Hoare

Philip Hoare is a journalist and author of non-fiction books. He has been fascinated by cetaceans from an early age and his book Leviathan (2008) won the 2009 Samuel Johnson Prize.

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Obituary: Daniel Farson

Daniel Negley Farson, photographer, broadcaster and writer: born 8 January 1927; died 27 November 1997.

Letter: Stritch magic

Sir: In his engrossing interview with the fabulous Elaine Stritch (22 November), David Benedict states that Noel Coward wrote Sail Away for her.

Thursday's book; Cleopatra's Wedding Present: travels through Syria by Robert Tewdwr Moss

Within the first few pages of this book its languidly English author has learnt the secret of violet-scented tea from a Syrian cloth- seller called Aladdin, met Boy George, and encountered the corpulent figure of photographer Dan Farson, who pounces on Tewdwr Moss at a restaurant, accusing him of all manner of calumny while helping himself to a plate of roasted sparrows, "stuffing them into his mouth - little ornithological corpses, sliding down into the maws of hell".

The big book of revenge

When a woman reveals the dark secrets of her marriage to a famous but domineering husband, is it kiss 'n tell, or important biographical source, asks Philip Hoare

Into the heart of the hero's homeland

Three years ago today, Transkei's favourite son was inaugurated as South Africa's president.

Secret life of knobs and pillys

Philip Hoare does a little muck-raking on our plant life; Flora Britannica by Richard Mabey, Sinclair Stevenson, pounds 30

Liars on a grand scale

Philip Hoare investigates the tricky business of film biography The Real Life of Laurence Olivier by Roger Lewis, Century, pounds 17.99 Rosebud : The Story of Orson Welles by David Thomson, Little, Brown, pounds 20

Obituary: Rose Williams

The troubled life of Rose Williams haunts the works of her brother Tennessee. Like a faded Southern belle eternally deserted, she is the model for the withdrawn, disabled "Laura Wingfield" who seeks refuge in her collection of glass animals in The Glass Menagerie. Her brother Tom declares, "Oh, Laura, Laura, I tried to leave you behind me, but I am more faithful than I intended to be!"

Obituary: Robert Tewdwr Moss

Robert Tewdwr Moss was a consummate journalist who would appreciate the finer details of his own obituary. Like some ghost of the fin de siecle past, he moved through literary, journalistic and cafe society, clad in velvet and brocade, surreptitiously passing on a morsel of gossip here, imparting some arcane piece of knowledge there.

Day In a Page

Super Mario crushes the Messi dream as Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil

Super Mario crushes the Messi dream

Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil
Saharan remains may be evidence of the first race war, 13,000 years ago

The first race war, 13,000 years ago?

Saharan remains may be evidence of oldest large-scale armed conflict
Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Researchers hope eye tests can spot ‘biomarkers’ of the disease
Sex, controversy and schoolgirl schtick

Meet Japan's AKB48

Pop, sex and schoolgirl schtick make for controversial success
In pictures: Breathtaking results of this weekend's 'supermoon'

Weekend's 'supermoon' in pictures

The moon appeared bigger and brighter at the weekend
Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor