Arts and Entertainment

There is a certain pleasure (however smug) in being ahead of the curve when spotting a particularly gifted writer, and a certain regret when the masses catch up with your discovery. The latter, of course, is the state desired by author and publisher, and Peter May has now made the transition from connoisseurs’ taste to popular bestseller.

Get me out of here - rural Portugal, Mauritius, Egypt

Now... Depart this month for a break in rural Portugal. Sunvil has four nights' B&B at two Pousadas (historic hotels) split between Estremoz and Alcacer do Sal, with TAP flights from Heathrow to Lisbon, car hire and one dinner for £542 per person. Sunvil.co.uk

Fishing is the main industry of the Faroe Islands

Faroe Islands face trade sanctions over fishery quotas

Tiny North Atlantic nation repeatedly defies EU over herring and mackerel quotas

48 rescued as tourist boat runs aground of Welsh coast

Forty eight people have been rescued from a passenger boat after it hit a rock on a Welsh island this afternoon, coastguards said.

Wanted: Polar bear spotter to protect Norwegian scientists - must be loud and good with guns

Adventurers with a keen eye sight and loud vocal chords are being offered the chance to explore the Arctic with scientists, in a three week job contract as polar bear spotter.

Deals of the week - Bruges, Skiathos, Cape Verde

Less than £200... For £199pp, Cresta Holidays is offering a three-night jaunt to Bruges this summer. The package includes accommodation at the Flanders Hotel in the heart of the city with breakfast and return Eurostar from London St Pancras on 19 August. Crestaholidays.co.uk

The island of Korcula

Summer Guide 2013: Islands

Take your pick of seven new properties on the Greek Islands available through Ionian Villas (01935 477196; ionian-villas.co.uk). "Artist's Villa" on Paxos, built in 2011, has three bedrooms and sits on a hilltop surrounded by olive groves overlooking Gaios port. It costs from £1,330 for a week's rental. Meanwhile, two-bedroom "Morpheus", a newly completed property on Antipaxos, is one of only four villas with swimming pools that are available to rent on the island. It costs from £1,120 for a week, including rental of a Suzuki 4x4. International travel costs are not included.

Deep south: Tristan da Cunha

World's most remote parish seeks vicar

Tristan da Cunha, a British territory stranded in the South Atlantic, is having trouble recruiting a new priest

Snooze for a living: Finnish hotel seeks 'professional sleeper'

Snooze for a living: Finnish hotel seeks 'professional sleeper'

Applicants should speak fluent English and Finnish, with Russian considered an additional bonus

A snowmobile is the ideal way to reach Barentsburg in winter

Barentsburg: chilly invite to a land frozen in time

Barentsburg in the Svalbard archipelago is a curious Soviet relic best explored by snowmobile, says Chris Leadbeater

Two years ago the BBC denied misleading viewers over footage shown on the Frozen Planet series of a polar bear tending her newborn cubs

Frozen Planet documentary maker in trouble for 'disturbing' Norway's polar bears

One of the experts behind the critically acclaimed documentary Frozen Planet, is in hot water in Norway over “disturbing” polar bears for another BBC show while filming them in the wild.

Calafate, introduced by a resident to use as a wind-break, is spreading fast on the Falklands and is proving difficult to eradicate

Calafate invasion: Falklands natives under threat from an Argentinian force of nature

Invasive – and tenacious – South American shrub affecting plants and damaging sheep

Andy Flower talks with Alistair Cook

England keen to reassert the status quo in New Zealand

All those so-called expert predictions about Old Albion trampling all over the Kiwi colonials are looking pretty hollow now. So here we go again. England, without being cocky, arrogant or complacent, should defeat New Zealand by some distance in the second Test which begins at the Basin Reserve tomorrow.

Falkland Islander Joan Turner, wearing a dress with the Union Jack colours, casts her vote at the Town Hall polling station in Stanley

Falklands referendum: Why ask British people if they want to be British?

Alejandro Betts, formerly Alexander, is the Falklands’ only  ‘defector’. He tells David Usborne the referendum is pointless

A

Maldives government moves to halt public flogging of 15-year-old girl raped by stepfather

Amid widespread outrage, the government of the Maldives has said it is seeking to halt the public flogging of a 15-year-old girl who had been repeatedly raped by her step-father.

Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: What are prices like in Madeira?

Q. I am going to Madeira in May and would like to know the prices for eating out, and also the cost of drinks.

Karen Eaton

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Arts and Entertainment
<p>
<b>Kathryn Williams</b>
</p>
<p>
When I was supporting Ray La Montagne I was six months pregnant. He had been touring for a year and he was exhausted and full of the cold. I was feeling motherly, so I would leave presents for him and his band: Tunnock's Tea Cakes, cold remedies and proper tea. Ray seemed painfully shy. He hardly spoke, hardly looked at you in the face. I felt like a dick speaking to him, but said "hi" every day. </p>
<p>
He was being courted by the same record company who had signed me and subsequently let me go, and I wanted him to know that there were people around who didn't want anything from him. At the Shepherds Bush Empire in London, on the last night of the tour, Ray stopped in his set to thank me for doing the support. He said I was a really good songwriter and people should buy my stuff. I was taken aback and felt emotionally overwhelmed. Later that year, just before I had my boy Louis, I was l asleep in bed with Radio 4 on when Louis moved around in my belly and woke me up. Ray was doing a session on the World Service. </p>
<p>
I really believe that Louis recognised the music from the tour, and when I gave birth to him at home I played Ray's record as something that he would recognise to come into the world with. </p>
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
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Join the tequila gold rush

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Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?