The Grampian Quartet

The Grampian Quartet

Edited and introductions by Roderick Watson. The Quarry Wood, although published well before Sunset Song, inhabits a similar world; the progress of its heroine could almost be the alternative story of a Chris Guthrie who did go to university. Compassionate and humorous, the grace and style of Shepherd’s prose is heightened by a superb ear for the vigorous language of the north-east. The Weatherhouse, Shepherd’s masterpiece, is an even more substantial achievement which belongs to the great line of Scottish fiction dealing with the complex interactions of small communities, and especially the community of women – a touching and hilarious network of mothers, daughters, spinsters and widows. It is also a striking meditation on the nature of truth, the power of human longing and the mystery of being. The third and final novel, A Pass in the Grampians, describes Jenny Kilgour’s coming of age as she has to choose between the kindly harshness of her grandfather’s life on a remote hill farm, and the vulgar and glorious energy of Bella Cassie, a local girl who left the community to pursue success as a singer, and has now returned to scandalise them all. The Living Mountain is a lyrical testament in praise of the Cairngorms. It is a work deeply rooted in Shepherd’s knowledge of the natural world, and a poetic and philosophical meditation on our longing for high and holy places. This is the first omnibus edition of Shepherd’s prose works – her sensitivity and powers of observation raise her work far above the status of regional literature and into the front rank of Scottish writing.

Alasdair Gray

The Fiction of Communion

Alasdair Gray

Alasdair Gray's writing, and in particular his great novel Lanark: A Life in Four Books (1981), is often read as a paradigm of postmodern practice. This study challenges that view by presenting an analysis that is at once more conventional and more strongly radical. By reading Gray in his cultural and intellectual context, and by placing him within the tradition of a Scottish history of ideas that has been largely neglected in contemporary critical writing, Gavin Miller re-opens contact between this highly individualistic artist and those Scottish and European philosophers and psychologists who helped shape his literary vision of personal and national identity. Scottish social anthropology and psychiatry (including the work of W. Robertson Smith, J.G. Frazer and R.D. Laing) can be seen as formative influences on Gray's anti-essentialist vision of Scotland as a mosaic of communities, and of our social need for recognition, acknowledgement and the common life.

Modern Scottish Women Poets

Modern Scottish Women Poets

Edited and Introduced by Dorothy McMillan and Michel Byrne. ‘This is a book full of life, energy, skill and unexpected found treasure: a blend of major and minor voices which reveals the formation and verve of Scotland’s modern poetic.’ Ali Smith This invaluable collection traces the work of nearly a hundred writers over one of the most eventful periods in Scottish literary history, and an extensive introduction sets the scene for the growth of women writers from Scotland throughout the whole of the twentieth century. With over 200 poems – from Naomi Mitchison, Carol Ann Duffy, Dilys Rose, Kathleen Jamie, Meg Bateman, Jackie Kay, Liz Lochhead and many more – this collection celebrates the exceptional power and range of Scottish women poets. ‘It is a crucial anthology, exciting and dynamic. It feels revolutionary.’ Sunday Herald ‘This is an ambitious and brilliant collection that both illuminates the female component of a scene dominated by men and establishes a tradition through them that further illuminates their work. It is . . . a celebration of women whose reputations have grown steadily, as well as an indication of a broader confidence across Scottish writing.’ Libby Brooks, Guardian

The End of an Old Song: A Romance

A Romance

The End of an Old Song: A Romance

Introduced by Christopher Harvie The End of an Old Song is the story of three young people; Alastair, a reckless careerist, Patrick, an artist, and Catherine, the self-centred girl from whom they can't break free. Set in the thirties, the war years and beyond, it also evokes the nostalgic passing of a way of life and the destruction of values symbolised by the decline of an old house, Kingisbyres. Scott's novel is one of those rare works in which life blows across the page, careless of time and space and convention, making its own moods and weather. Stevensonian in its movement and warmth, its portrayal of character is as vivid and authentic as its feelings for a time now past.

The Weatherhouse

The Weatherhouse

The women of the tiny town of Fetter-Rothnie have grown used to a life without men, and none more so than the tangle of mothers and daughters, spinsters and widows living at the Weatherhouse. Returned from war with shellshock, Garry Forbes is drawn into their circle as he struggles to build a new understanding of the world from the ruins of his grief. In The Weatherhouse Nan Shepherd paints an exquisite portrait of a community coming to terms with the brutal losses of war, and the small tragedies, yearnings and delusions that make up a life.

Biographical Dictionary of ScottishWomen

Biographical Dictionary of ScottishWomen

This single-volume dictionary presents the lives ofindividual Scottish women from earliest times to the present. Drawing on newscholarship and a wide network of professional and amateur historians, itthrows light on the experience of women from every class and category inScotland and among the worldwide Scottish diaspora.The BiographicalDictionary of Scottish Women is written for the general reading public andfor students of Scottish history and society. It is scholarly in itsapproach to evidence and engaging in the manner of its presentation. Eachentry makes sense of its subject in narrative terms, telling a story ratherthan simply offering information. The book is as enjoyable to read as it iseasy and valuable to consult. It is a unique and important contribution tothe history of women and Scotland.The publisher acknowledges support fromthe Scottish Arts Council and the Scottish Executive Equalities Unit towardsthe publication of this title.

A History of Scottish Women's Writing

A History of Scottish Women's Writing

This is the first comprehensive critical analysis of Scottish women's writing from its recoverable beginnings to the present day. Essays cover individual writers - such as Margaret Oliphant, Nan Shepherd, Muriel Spark and Liz Lochhead - as well as groups of writers or kinds of writing - such as women poets and dramatists, or Gaelic writing and the legacy of the Kailyard. In addition to poetry, drama and fiction, a varied body of non-fiction writing is also covered, including diaries, memoirs, biography and autobiography, didactic and polemic writing, and popular and periodical writing for and by women.

Land Lines

The Scottish Literary Tour Company Ltd

Land Lines

Take a journey - real or imaginary - from the comfort of your armchair. Through quiet glens, over barren moors and hills, along lochside, seashore or city streets. On the way, indulge in the company of a host of Scottish writers across a rich diversity of language and dialect, century by century from Allan Ramsay to Ian Rankin, Stevenson to Spark, McGonagall to MacNeacail, Hogg to Irvine Welsh ...Land Linesis an illustrated guide to the literature and landscape of Scotland, an inspiring and imaginative journey over a panoramic sweep of Scottish literary history - inviting you to travel through time and place, memory and emotion, as expressed through the personal vision of our writers and poets. Feel the raw, open landscape: 'cauld is the snaw wind', chilling to the bone. Stand still and breathe in the 'sweet air' of the windy hilltops, or dream of distant 'misty blue islands' lost at sea. Travel east from rural retreat to cityscape, glimpsing the 'stane-grey' granite of Aberdeen. Take the road south and drift back in time to imagine the 'grimy tenements' and the 'lums of the reikan toun' of historic Old Edinburgh. Then west, to the brash-new 'concrete, glass and steel' design of an emerging, contemporary Glasgow.This richly illustrated story of the changing shape of Scotland is underpinned and illuminated by the narrative mastery of Moira Burgess, seamlessly and subtly blending stories and verse, fact with fiction. Stunning photography by Marius Alexander and Paul Basu works with the narration to create a perceptive and fresh insight into the nature of a land and its people. The book is lavishly illustrated throughout, with over 180 full-colour photographs.Complete with a full index of place names and writers and notes on their work, this unique book offers the ultimate literary tour - for all who appreciate great Scottish writing captured with the beauty of the land that has inspired it.

The Reader

The Reader

'Is there any better gift for a writer than the chance to put a book together of writing by others that she or he has loved? Is there any truer gift to a reader from any writer?' Ali Smith This is a collection of what Ali Smith has loved over the course of her reading life, in her twenties, as a teenager, a child. A book full of pieces from wonderful writers - Plath, Grassic Gibbon, Spark, Morgan, Grace Paley, Yeats, Atwood. But also full of lesser known writers about which readers will be very happy to hear, like Joseph Roth, only just gaining proper reputation status now, Clarice Lispector, the Brazilian genius who's far too underpublished here, like Leonora Carrington, the socialite who ran away to be a surrealist, and Armando, the artist whose writings are beautiful and lucid. Full of pieces by brand new wonderful writers; full of surprises, like how good Lee Miller was at journalism, how beautifully Dilys Powell writes about Greece. Full of unexpected things - turning the page to find the lyric of 'It's only a Paper Moon', or Beryl the Peril, or The Little House on the Prairie. Throughout, each piece is edited so as to read discretely, and arranged into a book which will reveal more about the writer who's edited it than a hundred press interviews ever would. This book is a classic about the sheer love of reading that every real reader knows.

Ecology and Modern Scottish Literature

Ecology and Modern Scottish Literature

The book demonstrates how successive generations of Scottish writers have both reflected on and contributed to the development of international ecological theory and philosophy. Provocative re-readings of works by authors including Robert Louis Stevenson, John Muir, Nan Shepherd, John Burnside, Kathleen Jamie, and George Mackay Brown demonstrate the significance of ecological thought across the spectrum of Scottish literary culture.