My father's 'cure' for me being gay? Jaqueline Bisset! After all (he assured me) a similar gambit worked for Prince Charles 

My father's 'cure' for me being gay? Jaqueline Bisset! After all (he assured me) a similar

On New Year's Eve 1977, novelist Adam Mars-Jones told his father he was gay. He was 27 at the time, so hardly a tremulous teenager. But, still, he was full of apprehension - not least because his father, High Court judge Sir William Mars-Jones, was practically the embodiment of the hidebound, homophobic Establishment

Boxing with the Dalai Lama and English language curiosities: Join us for a Blessed lunch...with Royal revelations 

We are delighted to announce our autumn Daily Mail Literary Lunch on Tuesday, October 6, with a stellar line-up of speakers to entertain you.

From the shadow of dementia, a brilliant novel shines: Terry Prachett's last book is a funny, fearless farewell

Terry Pratchett was ready for death. His fans have adored his wildly imaginative, punning, profound, silly, magical, thrilling Discworld stories for 32 years, since he published his first novel.

The weirdos whose ideas changed all of our lives: An alternative and unothodox history of individualism in the 20th century 

This is an alternative history of the much-documented 20th century, which managed to be both the best and the worst century on record.

PICTURE THIS: Damascus Tiles  

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Decorative ceramic tiles are at the heart of Islamic architecture. Though they vary in shape, finish and pottery technique, the vivid colour and geometric patterns are consistent features of the tiles.

Britain's pottiest poet: Extraordinary life of the Bohemian bisexual who shocked his own children by breastfeeding a kitten

The poet who was Britain's pottiest parent: His son describes the love affairs, the

Can a man really breastfeed a kitten? It's not a question you expect to arise in a book about the leading literary lights of the Thirties. But towards the end of this eye-popping family narrative, the sculptor Matthew Spender - son of the poet Stephen - claims that when he was 23, his future mother-in-law rescued a half-drowned kitten from a Greek beach and insisted he suckle the creature to prevent it from becoming 'psychologically deprived'.

PICTURE THIS: Portraits in Fashion: Norman Parkinson

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'The world is my studio', Parkinson once told an interviewer. In a career that spanned seven decades, the flamboyant fashion photographer was a master.

Lock up your husbands, Mummy's on the prowl! Miles Morland's memoir about his family is as cheering as a summer's day

This is the very opposite of a misery memoir. A merriment memoir, maybe? Whatever we call it, there should be more of them. Miles Morland was born in India in the Forties to his father in the Navy.

PICTURE THIS: Pirelli - The Calender: 50 years and more


In the 51 years since its first publication, the Pirelli calendar has never featured a spare tyre. What it has done is adorn Naomi Campbell in gold leaf, wrap Kate Moss in a scrap of sackcloth.

Who turned Austen's home into a Little Chef? Frank Barrett takes a tour of literature's most famous landmarks

From the Shetland Islands to the southernmost point of Cornwall, the beauty and variety of the British landscape is matched by a literary heritage of superlative richness.

In praise of the songs that bring you to your feet: Alex Marshall's tour of national anthems is well researched and diligent

This is a book about some of the most important songs in the world. They might not be up to much musically or lyrically, but they can change lives and often end them: our national anthems.

Killed by Hitler for a silver clock: How Simon Goodman's family history was plundered by Nazi antique looters

The childhood of Bernard and Lili Gutmann was a charmed one. Their father, Fritz, was an heir of the Gutmann banking dynasty, a family of wealthy, highly educated Jews who ran a bank.

Is Downton's Dowager really Kenneth Williams in drag? Biography reveals the inspiration behind Countess of Grantham

Maggie Smith biography reveals the inspiration behind Downton Abbey's Countess of Grantham

Maggie Smith, left, met Carry On star Kenneth Williams, right, in 1957. A new biography argues that this decades-long friendship inspired the actor in one of her most revered roles, as Violet Crawley of Downton. Smith, who was born in Essex in 1934, was soon upstaging the likes of Laurence Olivier and went on to star in the Harry Potter films.

The spies who love each other: At top secret GCHQ romance blossoms, spies marry - and even their kids become spooks

Who would be a spy? It has always seemed to me a particularly depressing kind of job, involving a lot of standing on street corners, smoking suspiciously.

Why Eton's working class head wants to ban GCSEs! Tony Little explains why teenagers just want to feel loved


Like many British families, my wife and children and I have got used to setting off for our annual summer holiday with a particular date hanging over us like a glowering rain cloud.


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Before the first triumphant British ascent of Everest in 1953, there were eight unsuccessful attempts to reach the mountain's peak.

My mother Joan Rivers, the rudest (and funniest) person in the world: Daughter Melissa publishes memoir

Great comedians are great moralists. They point out and mock our flaws, errors and imperfections - our silliness and superciliousness. Joan's daughter Melissa has penned an memoir.

A Shirley Valentine affair...with a cat! The woman who's made it her mission to car for Sicily's abandoned moggies

EX0E17 Adorable tabby kitten portrait.

For anyone who loves cats, a holiday in the Mediterranean can be a mixed blessing. Sunshine, beautiful scenery and delicious food and wine add up to an enticing prospect.

I say, there's a zebra crossing Piccadilly! How the Georgians kept kangaroos, electric eels as pets in their back gardens

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A young Irishman visiting London in the late 18th century wrote home to his father in some astonishment about the sights the capital had to offer.

Brave boys the fat man branded liars: How Cyril Smith's victims were ignored when they tried to expose the abuse they suffered at his hands

Brave boys the fat man branded liars: How Cyril Smith's victims were ignored when they

All this week, Labour MP Simon Danczuk is laying bare how the Establishment, the Liberal Party, the police and even MI5 covered up the industrial-scale child abuse of 29-stone Rochdale MP Cyril Smith. Today, how his victims were ignored and betrayed when they tried to expose their suffering.

The truth about life in an open prison, by VICKY PRYCE - and why the women in our softest jails really suffer

Different life: Vicky Pryce is seen chatting with inmates and a prison officer at East Sutton Park Prison, which she describes at a 'real joy' after serving four days at Holloway

In the finale of her unique inside story, Vicky Pryce, the wife of disgraced ex-minister Chris Huhne, describes life at open prison East Sutton Park.

His little face still looked so beautiful: In Mary Berry's own moving words, the story of the child she lost so young

Mary Berry - photoshoot for one of her first cookery book with helpers Annabel and William.

In the second extract from her autobiography, published exclusively in the Mail today, Mary Berry describes the sudden death of the son she doted on, pictured left.

Eric Morecambe's son reveals the obsessive dark side of the 'Bring Me Sunshine' boys

Eric and Ernie were together virtually all day every day because of work; so when they became successful, they had an unspoken agreement that they wouldn't socialise with one another

In his compelling new biography, Gary Morecambe talks about his father's relationship with Ernie Wise and how he continued to make them laugh even up until the end.

'Useless Darling was just in it for himself' : Damian McBride reveals how 'poor Alistair' played the media martyr amid economic crisis


In an extract from his explosive memoirs, Power Trip, Damian McBride reveals how the former Chancellor survived by the skin of his teeth after credit crunch bungle.