Arts and Entertainment Penny Mordaunt MP speaks at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester, 2013

The MP for Portsmouth said she would donate her participation fee to charity

Dom Joly: The Mounties always get their phone call

I've finished my expedition to the glorious Okanagan Valley in British Columbia (Canada's California, apparently) investigating Ogopogo, the monster that is supposed to inhabit Lake Okanagan. Don't worry, I haven't gone all David Icke (yet) – this is for my new book, Scary Monsters and Super Creeps, and the subject gives me an excuse to visit some pretty interesting parts of the world. Canada was probably a brave choice for a first destination as it is seen as literary Mogadon by publishers. Bill Bryson supposedly wanted to write a book about the country but his publishers recoiled in horror. I love the place – I have a Canadian wife and spend every summer there – and hope to convert as many Brits as possible to the land of the beaver.

Beach Fashion: The heat of the moment

Forget reaching for lazy leisurewear – a trip to the beach is an occasion to warrant a wardrobe of its own, says Rebecca Gonsalves

Susannah Shops: In search of the perfect bikini

It’s that time of year again – the holiday season – marred only by the fact that shopping for swimwear rears its ugly head once more.

John Walsh: What I learnt at the Playboy Club

The Slutwalk business has had repercussions. Men and women have been squaring up to each other all over the place. At a literary salon on Saturday night, a young woman whom I'd never met before waved her cigarette at me and said: "Why do you wear all those rings? Are you gay or something?" to which I replied, "No, I just like personal adornment."

Deborah Ross: Exposing your body to the sun? Get busy...

If you ask me...

Joan Smith: When women cover up, it's what they reveal that matters

Nigella wouldn't be the first woman with a fuller figure to feel uncomfortable alongside young women whose body shapes owe a lot to punishing eating regimes

Harriet Walker: In short, a guide to bare-legged sartorial cool

Keep your shorts well conditioned too – nothing spoils the look like a rumpled crotch or bulging pockets

Hit and myth as Homer hits Hampstead

A couple of years ago, my friend and dramaturg Tilman Raabke asked me to write a play for Theatre Oberhausen in the Ruhr region of German. The idea was to commission five European playwrights with each of us handling a particular section of the Odyssey. I had read the Odyssey as a boy and was always interested in Penelope's suitors. These are the despicable men who hung around her house eating her food, drinking her wine and all the time trying to win her love while her husband, Odysseus, took the long road home. They felt perfect for the stage.

Daisy Lowe's affordable swimwear range

Daisy Lowe has created an affordable range of vintage swimwear.

Leona Gage: Beauty queen who became an instant celebrity after being stripped of her Miss USA title

In 1957, Miss Maryland, Leona Gage was chosen as Miss USA.

Dom Joly: Spot-fixing had the cricket world stumped but not me and my scanner

Weird World of Sport: 'Listen, we need to come to an agreement about what might be occurring in your big game...'

Miss Universe 2009 says her replacement is clear

Miss Universe 2009 Stefania Fernandez says it's clear in her mind who'll replace her as the world's top beauty queen.

Ready to Wear: The epilator is historically a fairly violent appliance

Part Two of the ready-to-wear series dedicated to hair: hair removal and, in particular, the removal of hair on the legs.

Gillard's lead vanishes as Australian election nears

Australian labour Party strategists regard Tony Abbott – the mercurial, gaffe-prone Opposition leader – as one of their greatest assets. Indeed, as the election campaign has gathered pace here, the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, has repeatedly sought to frighten voters by raising the spectre of Mr Abbott running the country.

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Day In a Page

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
A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried