Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.


The Week in Books: Salute the dark knight of Guyana

Writers, even the most conformist and conventional of them, very seldom receive knighthoods. Adventurous, uncompromising and idiosyncratic novelists almost never do. Yet, last week, in the Birthday Honours List, the Queen rewarded just such a figure. Raised in Guyana, by training a surveyor with a profound, life-changing knowledge of the fragile eco-systems of his native land. he has long lived in Essex. Half a century ago, TS Eliot (in his role as editor at Faber & Faber) talent-spotted his first novel.

Morgan's sleight of hand offers the promise of a dazzling future

All the talk now is of Eoin Morgan. It began as an excited muttering in South Africa last September, grew into something more voluble on his return there in November, became more urgent in Bangladesh in March and has shown no sign of declining from fever pitch in Guyana this week.

Free spirit: A trip to Guyana inspired Mark Hix's sensational

This week I'm writing about a recent break that I took to a wonderful rum distillery in Guyana. What with my tequila mission to Mexico last year, as well as quite a few wine trips abroad, it's true that many of my excursions are based around alcohol, but I justify them by telling myself that having a full understanding of all the types of alcohol in the world is an integral part of my job – at least that's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

One Minute With: Pauline Melville

I'm in my front room looking out of the window and can see a raggedly unkempt privet hedge that protects me from the street, near the Arsenal football stadium.

Janet Jagan: Marxist from Chicago who served as president of Guyana

Janet Jagan was white, Jewish and from Chicago, but for two years she served as President of Guyana, a Caribbean country on the mainland of South America deeply divided between communities of Indian and African origin. She was training as a nurse in her home town when she met Cheddi Jagan, a dental student whose parents had been brought from India as indentured labourers to work on a sugar plantation in what was then British Guiana, and the future course of her life was set.

Heaven scent: Gardening in the Guyanan rain forest

Once, long ago, on a trip to the Guyanan rain forest, Anna Pavord spent a few days living off sugar water and lemon grass. These days, she doesn’t have to go further than her windowsill for a taste of the tropics