Arts and Entertainment

'Napoleon was a terrific guy before he started crossing national borders,' says Andrew Wylie

The last word will be Rushdie

As the paperback of `The Satanic Verses' is published, Australian interviewer Susan Chenery, soon to join the `Independent on Sunday', finds its author in defiant mood

Norway warned on Rushdie

Norway warned on Rushdie

Small screen: Novel programming

We all have a novel in us. Anyway, that's the view of the author, Nigel Williams, who presents The Write Stuff, a new three-part BBC2 series on the art of novel writing. "Everyone has the ability to tell stories," he argues. "Look at News At Ten. You get fantastic storytelling from eye-witnesses with wonderful natural eloquence. You even see it on Beadle's About." Surely not.

All the thrills, glamour and heroism of an agent's life (an estate agent, that is)

I FEEL sorry for estate agents. For one thing, nobody has ever bothered to feature them in a major novel. But today all that is changed. Yes, today I bring you a major new work of fiction about an estate agent! Not only that, but it is an interactive novel. This means that you, the reader, have the power to change the course of the story by choosing the right option at various moments. Understand? Well, you will, as soon as you get into this complete novel about estate agents, entitled...

Cook vows to fight threat to Rushdie

SALMAN Rushdie was given public government backing yesterday when he was permitted to hold his first press conference in the ornate surroundings of the Foreign Office.

Letter: Salman Rushdie

YOU say, "Blair must act," in the case of Salman Rushdie ("The value of rage", Review, 8 February). When does he ever do anything else?

Books: A book that changed me - Wendy Perriam

When did you first read it? Probably in my pram, but certainly before the age of reason, which for Catholics means seven. It shaped my whole world view.

Network: Web sites

Nagano 1998

People: Their honour, his Nibbies

FROM Golden Globes and Oscars to the Evening Standard this and The South Bank Show that, arts awards are flying around like cricket balls in the West Indies. For some reason that I've never fully understood, I'm still waiting to hear the words, "And the winner is ... Rex Fontaine", but that doesn't stop me lapping up every ceremony going, and lounge-lizarding my way round the best hotels in the confident hope of seeing Melvyn Bragg in a tux.

Something horrible happened at the New Money party

This is the last day of the Old Year, and we all know what that means.

Rushdie's Future: Writing in Islam

Extracts from Seyyed Mohajerani's speech to the Iranian parliament on 20 August after which he was elected - by a very narrow margin - to be Minister of Islamic Guidance:

Rushdie's Future: `Passions rise as Iran seeks new talks on death sentence

With the return of European Union ambassadors to Tehran, the Iranian government hopes to re-start negotiations over the fatwa against British author Salman Rushdie. But as Our Correspondent in Tehran hears from the new Iranian minister of Islamic Guidance, Seyyed Ataollah Mohajerani, the Rushdie affair has no simple solutions.

Words: Arrogant

The Lord Chancellor has been widely accused of arrogance after boasting of his intimacy with Tony Blair. Earl Spencer has also been arrogant, in the view of the media, in his treatment of his Countess. And John le Carre has called Salman Rushdie a "self-canonising arrogant colonialist", for reasons that are not clear. Arrogance may soon overtake hypocrisy as top people's favourite sin.

I just want to ask her one question about her and Bill

`The Ambassador said Mrs Clinton would speak to as many guests as possible. An enormous queue formed. Oh no, I thought, she'll never get round us all, and anyway I want to watch the second half of Everton vs Southampton ... Hunter Davies reports from the American Embassy.

Blair's Hundred Days by Derek Draper, Faber pounds 7.99.

First serialised in the press at the end of the hundred days, but now appearing in book form, this reportage-diary is, of course, in danger of going further and further out of date even as you read it: hindsight is an endlessly powerful force in politics, as elsewhere. But as a swift- response, insider's-eye view it has an enjoyable freshness. Since it describes Blair's as "the most media-managed government in history" it is probably appropriate that the text is journalistic and immediate, but it's a shame when it degenerates into trash-rag cliches. From the first we find passages like this: "parties across the capital are in full flow. Helena Kennedy, the top barrister destined for the House of Lords, plays hostess to the luvvie and literati brigade, entertaining the likes of Salman Rushdie, who watch the results on a huge ITN jumbo screen, provided courtesy of Jon Snow, the cerebral and left-of-centre presenter of Channel 4 News..."
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
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