Any Other Mouth
A masterly collection of short stories from which emerges, despite its disavowal
of chronology, the moving tale of a young woman of talent whose life lurches between
hope and disaster. Written with startling freshness and energy, it seamlessly mingles
autobiography and invention, each episode a new artistic inspiration.
Haunted by sea, rock and the landscape of the outer isles, Niall Campbell’s finely terse
lyrics use the details of place to generate a wider sense of the strangeness and
challenge of what it is to be a thinking and feeling being in the world. This is a
remarkably powerful first collection.
The Legacy of Elizabeth Pringle
It is hard to believe this is Kirsty Wark’s first novel. Set in Arran, it ranges widely in the
decades of the 20th century, covering family tensions, distant war and the creation of a
distinctive home in the house which, in the long run, is the legacy of the remarkable characters
who live there.
The Monster’s Wife
A genuinely original look at the muchtravelled Frankenstein story, beyond the frozen
wastes of the novel’s conclusion, to an imagined after-story set in the distant
North of Scotland. It’s a claustrophobic examination of the community and its
inhuman visitors, and genuinely frightening in places.
The Last Pair of Ears
Mary F McDonough
(Gadfly Editions )
A collection of poetry and prose loosely bound together by bafflement at the human condition,
ranging through many registers and imagined situations without once losing the detachment
which gives these poems a bitter-sweet urgency. Control, irony and real feeling make this
collection one which stays in the memory long after reading.
The Rental Heart
An assured collection which plays with the concept of the heart as a replaceable organ,
and the effect variations in heart and character would have on human existence. The stories
boomerang around the world and our understanding of what the heart can
be and can do. A disorienting but fascinating collection of stories.
The winner of the First Book of the Year will be announced at the Saltire Literary Awards on 11th November, details and book tickets HERE.