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The Singing Sands

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This short walk to the lovely singing sands of Eigg with great views over to Rum, starts from Cleadale in the north of the island. To reach here from the pier you can either walk along the road (following the directions for Laig Bay) or hire bikes at the pier and cycle. Terrain

Please consider setting up a direct debit donation to help support the continued maintenance and updates to Walkhighlands. Donate Jeffrey, Evie (2019). "Capital Punishment and Women in the British Police Procedural: Josephine Tey's A Shilling for Candles and To Love and Be Wise". Clues: A Journal of Detection. 37 (2): 40–50.Ewan, Elizabeth; etal., eds. (2006). The biographical dictionary of Scottish women: from the earliest times to 2004. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press. p.233. ISBN 9780748626601. Brat Farrar (or Come and Kill Me) (1949) (the basis, without on-screen credit, for the 1963 Hammer production Paranoiac)

In five of the mystery novels, all of which except the first she wrote under the name of Tey, the hero is Scotland Yard Inspector Alan Grant. (Grant appears in a sixth, The Franchise Affair, as a minor character.) The best known of these is The Daughter of Time, in which Grant, laid up in hospital, has friends research reference books and contemporary documents so that he can puzzle out the mystery of whether King Richard III of England murdered his nephews, the Princes in the Tower. Grant comes to the firm conclusion that King Richard was totally innocent of the death of the princes. I first read this book MANY MANY years ago, while on a loosely-planned visit to the UK. I remember being sufficiently taken by the notion of “singing sands” to get myself onto a MacBrayne Steamer ferry to the island of Eigg in the Hebrides, where there were said to be such sands – I seem to remember a distinct humming, despite a nasty rainstorm. Later re-reads of the book have been less enchanting, mostly because, as you say, the puzzle element really wasn’t very satisfactory, and the ending appeared rushed at best. I do like Tey, however, and think of her as a very elegant writer indeed.The Man in the Queue (also published as Killer in the Crowd) (1929) [as Gordon Daviot]. Serialised, Dundee Evening Telegraph, 12 August to 24 September 1930. [13] Mary Miley's The Impersonator (2013) has a plot very similar to that of Brat Farrar, with the story transferred to 1920s America.

Tey's Brat Farrar is mentioned extensively as a work vividly remembered and imagined by the narrator in the first section of Gerald Murnane's 2009 novel Barley Patch. This is due to the shape and size of the sand granules (round and between 0.1 and .5 in diameter), level of humidity and the fact that the sand contains silica. A Shilling For Candles: broadcast in 1954, 1963 and 1969, adapted by Rex Rienits; in 1998, adapted by John FletcherIn 1990, The Daughter of Time was selected by the British Crime Writers' Association as the greatest crime novel of all time; The Franchise Affair was 11th on the same list of 100 books. In 1989 Colin Dexter reprised the hospital-bound detective motif of Daughter of Time in his Inspector Morse novel The Wench is Dead, which was also made into an episode in the Morse television series. From such an unpromising beginning Grant is gradually drawn into the mystery of who the man in compartment B Seven was and why he was on the train. The novel’s slow first half builds up a portrait of Grant’s psyche as he grapples with his demons and puzzles over the death while fishing and having his cousin try to set him up with a widowed but impoverished (those wretched death duties) aristocrat. Asking his sergeant in London about Martin does not help because it seems that the man’s family in Marseilles has positively identified the body from a photograph and the death has been ruled an accident by the coroner. Meanwhile as he ponders he fishes, during the course of which he meets a kilted Scotsman called Wee Archie.

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