News Tom Hanks in the 2000 film Castaway

In a story similar to the plot of the film Castaway starring Tom Hanks, Jose Ivan was found on the atoll having floated 8,000 miles from Mexico

thursday's book; Lucky You by Carl Hiaasen (Macmillan, pounds 16.99)

If you start your career with a couple of books as alarmingly funny and original as Hiaasen's first Florida black comedies, Tourist Season and Double Whammy, it's an unfortunate fact that, after a while, people are going to start complaining that you're repeating yourself. With that in mind, perhaps the easiest thing here would be to write two separate reviews. The first should be marked "for new readers only" and it should commend the pace, outrageous characterisation, surreal humour and political bite that leaps off every page of Lucky You, a caper woven around the adventures of two winning tickets from the Florida state lottery.

Remote island home of spies and turtles opens its doors to tourists

A new holiday destination has arrived on the map: Ascension Island, formerly one of the Cold War's most secret and remote outposts.

Science: Tell me about ... how we age

From the moment the human sperm mingles with the egg, the cells there can divide 100 times over. But eventually, even if we aren't hit by a bus or fall ill, everyone dies. Last Friday, a team of American scientists announced that they had found a way to make human cells in a test tube divide about another 20 times, the equivalent of living roughly one-fifth longer.

Now Britain gets its own monster from the deep

The big, amorphous blob which caused such a stir when it was washed up on a Tasmanian beach turned out to be whale blubber. Now a genuine, entire monster of the deep has come ashore on the Suffolk coastline. And there is no doubting what it is - a quarter of a tonne of very recently deceased leatherback turtle, measuring more than two metres from nose to tail.

Greeks turn turtle

Restaurants specialising in turtle soup may have do do without their main ingredient after Greek forestry officials freed 423 restaurant- bound tortoises near the northern city of Salonica.

The heat is on and terrapins are going wild

There are constant warnings about the dangers posed to the environment by global warming. But one danger that seems to have been overlooked until now is the threat of a terrapin population explosion.

Fringe: One-man Show: Critical Mass

EDINBURGH FESTIVAL 97

MAKING TRACKS

Satellite technology, originally developed to plot the activities of potential enemies, is now being used to monitor various migrating animals. SATELLITE TECHNOLOGY HAS ALSO BROUGHT AN UNEXPECTED FINDING: MORE THAN HALF OF THE TURTLES' TRANSMITTERS WERE DESTROYED BY VIGOROUS LOVE-MAKING

Tourism threatens turtle population

Tourists jetting off in search of unspoilt beaches may be unwittingly playing a part in the demise of the turtle. The World Society for the Protection of Animals claims the turtles' habitats on tropical beaches are being destroyed by coastal development.

Cornish sea turtles under threat

ENVIRONMENT

Are you thinking too much?

Take it easy. It could be the fastest way to the really intelligent answer

LETTER : Tortoise and hare

Sir: Your supplement on primary school league tables was illuminating. Who would have thought that among Bolton schools, Top-of-the-Brow would have been beaten by Plodder Lane?

Angry MPs come out of their shells

An alliance of 33 tortoise-loving MPs has protested to the Swedish authorities after they froze 1,000 illegally imported specimens to death. The animals were destroyed despite offers from both the British-based Tortoise Trust and the SAS airline to cover the cost of returning them to Tadjikistan.

Science: Save the Earth - eat a turtle

Edward O Wilson is not your usual scientist. On the question of biodiversity, he's more pragmatist than preacher. Hugh Aldersley-Williams explains

Letters: Bad vibes on ultrasound

Sir: I sit down for a moment's quiet read, feeling exhausted, sick and 19 weeks pregnant, after a morning running around after my 16- month tornado. Tomorrow I'm off for my ultrasound scan - modern technology with no side-effects - and what am I faced with in today's Independent (13 August)? An expose on the safety of ultrasound scans.
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Leah Devine is only the ninth female to have made the Young Magician of the Year final since the contest began more than 50 years
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Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
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Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
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Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

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Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

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Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

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