The Wild Island by Antonia Fraser only cost me 20p. And it was tosh. But it was very entertaining tosh. Set in a remote Highland glen, the Wild Island in question - Eilean Fas - sits in the middle of a fast-flowing river. There's a spooky ancient house, there are slippery rocks, swirling mists and a rickety bridge. There are menacing Scottish nationalists, dope-smoking orphaned princesses (this is the 1970s), claimants to the throne of Scotland, festering family grievances, disputed ancestry, castles, stags' heads on every wall, faithful family servants, a number of mysterious deaths, and lots and lots of men in (and, on occasion, out of) kilts. Jemima Shore investigates the whole caboodle and finally discovers what lies beneath the history, the murders . . . and the kilts! As an amusing alternative to channel-hopping on a rare evening off with a glass of wine, it was worth every penny.
MISTLES AFTER THE ROWANS
5 days ago