Viv Groskop

Viv Groskop is a writer, broadcaster and stand-up comedian.

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Prize poet: Alexander Pushkin

Are you Tolstoy or Dostoevsky?

The Pushkin House Russian Book Prize aims to bring the UK and Russia closer together. Judge Viv Groskop sets the scene

Flourishing view: The festival is on a mission to celebrate the timeless bliss of getting lost in a book

2014 Independent Bath Literature Festival: A rapturous return to the happy valley

This year’s Independent Bath Literature Festival boasts a stellar line-up – and is on a mission to celebrate the timeless bliss of getting lost in a book

Sugar, I've filed for divorce: What happened when sweet-toothed Viv Groskop swore off 'the most dangerous drug of the times'?

I have been dieting on and off over the years, but sugar always creeps back in. I find wrappers in my handbag from stuff I’d forgotten I’d bought, let alone eaten

Book Review: This is the story of a happy marriage, By Ann Patchett

It’s not news that Ann Patchett is a great writer. Bel Canto won the Orange Prize in 2002 and two other novels (The Magician’s Assistant and State of Wonder) have been shortlisted. What is news is that she is a fascinating person, who has led a strange and rather wonderful life both as a writer and in other incarnations, all documented here in glorious novelistic detail.

Mad about the girl: The enduring appeal of Bridget Jones

How has a character who started life as a newspaper column gone on to become a global brand? As the latest book in the Bridget Jones franchise is about to be published, Viv Groskop looks back at her own relationship with an enduring cultural icon for answers…

Want a laugh? Wimmin are just the ticket

This year's Edinburgh festival is a good place to start

Praying for laughs: Viv Groskop on the funny women who inspired her own stand-up career

Why would a well-balanced, perfectly sane woman approaching middle age suddenly decide to become a stand-up comedian? And why would she then subject herself to playing 100 gigs in 100 nights? Blame the women who paved the way: the TV comedy goddesses of an earlier age.

Stay strong, Jimmy Carr - I've been heckled too

Stand-up comedy is turning into a battleground, and you need to have your weapons at the ready

Beyonce, Betty Friedan, and the female mystique myth 50 years on

I can't see the Gender-Blindness movement catching on soon, but I so wish it would

Childcare reforms must be seen, not just heard

So now nursery carers will be able to look after more children, which means more nursery places, and more overwhelmed teachers

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Day In a Page

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

Air strikes? Talk of God? Obama is following the jihadists’ script

The President came the nearest he has come yet to rivalling George W Bush’s gormless reaction to 9/11 , says Robert Fisk
Ebola outbreak: Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on the virus

Billy Graham’s son declares righteous war on Ebola

A Christian charity’s efforts to save missionaries trapped in Africa by the crisis have been justifiably praised. But doubts remain about its evangelical motives
Jeremy Clarkson 'does not see a problem' with his racist language on Top Gear, says BBC

Not even Jeremy Clarkson is bigger than the BBC, says TV boss

Corporation’s head of television confirms ‘Top Gear’ host was warned about racist language
Nick Clegg the movie: Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise

Nick Clegg the movie

Channel 4 to air Coalition drama showing Lib Dem leader's rise
Philip Larkin: Misogynist, racist, miserable? Or caring, playful man who lived for others?

Philip Larkin: What will survive of him?

Larkin's reputation has taken a knocking. But a new book by James Booth argues that the poet was affectionate, witty, entertaining and kind, as hitherto unseen letters, sketches and 'selfies' reveal
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?

Waxing lyrical

Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
Texas forensic astronomer finally pinpoints the exact birth of impressionism

Revealed (to the minute)

The precise time when impressionism was born
From slow-roasted to sugar-cured: how to make the most of the British tomato season

Make the most of British tomatoes

The British crop is at its tastiest and most abundant. Sudi Pigott shares her favourite recipes
10 best men's skincare products

Face it: 10 best men's skincare products

Oscar Quine cleanses, tones and moisturises to find skin-savers blokes will be proud to display on the bathroom shelf
Malky Mackay allegations: Malky Mackay, Iain Moody and another grim day for English football

Mackay, Moody and another grim day for English football

The latest shocking claims do nothing to dispel the image that some in the game on these shores exist in a time warp, laments Sam Wallace
La Liga analysis: Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Will Barcelona's hopes go out of the window?

Pete Jenson starts his preview of the Spanish season, which begins on Saturday, by explaining how Fifa’s transfer ban will affect the Catalans
Middle East crisis: We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

We know all too much about the cruelty of Isis – but all too little about who they are

Now Obama has seen the next US reporter to be threatened with beheading, will he blink, asks Robert Fisk
Neanderthals lived alongside humans for centuries, latest study shows

Final resting place of our Neanderthal neighbours revealed

Bones dated to 40,000 years ago show species may have died out in Belgium species co-existed
Scottish independence: The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

The new Scots who hold fate of the UK in their hands

Scotland’s immigrants are as passionate about the future of their adopted nation as anyone else
Britain's ugliest buildings: Which monstrosities should be nominated for the Dead Prize?

Blight club: Britain's ugliest buildings

Following the architect Cameron Sinclair's introduction of the Dead Prize, an award for ugly buildings, John Rentoul reflects on some of the biggest blots on the UK landscape