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'Best of Books'
THE ISLANDS, Skye, the Hebrides and Arran by Nick Williams
Published by Pocket Mountains, ISBN:
The islands off the west coast of Scotland have inspired generations of walkers, climbers, writers and explorers and this book shows you why. From the windswept machair of the Outer Hebrides to the sawtooth ridge of the Black Cuillin, the fairytale rock formations of the Trotternish and the distinctive profiles of the Small Isles of Eigg and Rum, the Argyll and Hebridean islands never fail to enchant.
The Outer Hebrides: Harris, Lewis and the Uists
Skye and Raasay
The Isle of Skye: Red and Black Cuillin
The Inner Hebrides: Eigg, Rum, Islay, Jura and Mull
The Isle of Arran
105mm x 148mm
With contributions from residents of Raasay and visitors to the island, the twenty walking routes in this illustrated guide to Raasay explore the spectacular scenery of this special island. Following tracks through forests, along rocky coastlines and up on to the summits of Dun Caan and nearby hills, walkers can enjoy some of the best views available in Scotland’s western seaboard. Just a twenty-five minute ferry boat trip from Sconser on the Isle of Skye, Raasay lies off Skye’s east coast end enjoys views with the panoramic backdrop of the Cuillin, Trotternish and mainland hills.
The Stornoway Black Pudding Bible by by Seumas MacInnes
Published by Birlinn Limited, ISBN: 9781841589084
Author and celebrated chef, Seamus, was raised in Glasgow with a Hebridean heritage and proudly advocates it's food produce. He rates black pudding as a versatile and uniquely flavoursome ingredient which can be served in myriad ways that will come as a revelation to those who still mistakenly associate the humble marag dubh solely with fried breakfasts. The 100 recipes in The Stornoway Black Pudding Bible include everything from the Café Gandolfi’s black pudding and mushrooms with pancakes, to black pudding pakoras, black pudding tarts and black pudding, chorizo and bean stew. For a fascinating insight into this popular pudding you simply must buy this great wee book!
THE GREAT BOOK OF SKYE by Norman Macdonald and Cailean Maclean
Published by Grosvenor House Publishing, ISBN: ISBN: 0952868792.
The book is the most comprehensive study ever undertaken of the people of the Isle of Skye, their families and their connections with other places.
Professor Norman Macdonald and photographer Cailean Maclean are both graduates of Aberdeen University and have long careers in their fields.
And the pair have been amazed by the response to their new book after receiving messages of congratulation and orders from all over the world.
Prof Macdonald, who has spent many years working at universities in Scotland and Canada and in the broadcast media, is currently historian and researcher at Sabhal Mor Ostaig – the Gaelic College on Skye.
Mr Macdonald explained that the book grew out of a recognition that there was a need for work of this kind that took a comprehensive look at Skye’s people through the ages.
He said: “To qualify to be in it, people had to be dead. The book is a biographical record of key people in the history of Skye.
“It covers 563 different individuals, arranged alphabetically, over more than 600 pages, interspersed with photographs.”
The images in the book have been taken by Mr Maclean, who has worked as a lecturer, researcher, publisher, broadcaster and photographer.
Much of his work focuses on the Highlands and islands, but he has also worked in Canada, France, Ireland, England, Spain and Portugal.
Mr Maclean said the book brought to light “thousands of largely unknown facts about the past of Scotland’s best-known island and uncovered many fascinating endeavours in which the Misty Isle’s people were involved”.
He added: “Its medley of themes makes it of interest to the scholar as well as to the person who wishes to find out about the ordinary, and the not so ordinary, people of Skye and their kin.”
The book is also available at Aros Phone 01478 613649, or MacIntyre's Shop on Wentworth Street and online at the link below.
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THE SKYE BOOK FESTIVAL 2014 by 5th - 7th Sept 2014
Published by Aros, Skye, ISBN:
SURROUND YOURSELF IN GREAT BOOKS at the 3rd annual Skye BooK Festival and with an impressive line up its a must for everyone who loves a good read!
The programe includes:
Scottish Baking with Sue Lawrence; After Floden by Rosemary Goring; Book Launch by Norman Macdonald and Cailean Maclean, The Great Book of Skye; Maggi Gibson meets Seriously Sassy Fans; Cynthia Rogerson's Narrative voice workshop; Hallaig at 60; Morag Henriksen is launching her first novel Scenery of Dreams; Dr Will Lamb will examine the life and work of Frances Tolmie; D.S. Murray will give a lively presentation about his books, past and those yet to come; Sally Magnuson; Lewis man Ken MacLeod talks about his new Sci-Fi novel, Descent; and Tattie Bogal: Scarecrows and Stories.
DONT MISS OUT.
More details at http://www.skye.co.uk/whats-on.php or on our Facebok page linked below
This book is an inspiring insight into the truly extraordinary determination of Calum MacLeod on Raasay. He lived on the northern point of Raasay since his birth in 1911. He tended the Rona lighthouse at the very tip of his little archipelago, until semi-automation in 1967 reduced his responsibilities. ‘So what he decided to do,’ says his last neighbour, Donald MacLeod, ‘was to build a road out of Arnish in his months off. With a road he hoped new generations of people would return to Arnish and all the north end of Raasay . . .’ And so, at the age of 56, Calum MacLeod, the last man left in northern Raasay, set about single-handedly constructing the ‘impossible’ road. It would become a romantic, quixotic venture, a kind of sculpture; an obsessive work of art so perfect in every gradient, culvert and supporting wall that its creation occupied almost twenty years of his life. In Calum’s Road, Roger Hutchinson recounts the extraordinary story of this remarkable man’s devotion to his visionary project.
The Girl on the Ferry Boat by Angus Peter Campbell
Published by , ISBN: 9781908373779
‘I loved her from the moment I saw her, and that love has never wavered. It has encased every choice I have ever made, and I have never done anything in my life which didn’t involve her image somewhere… I’m so sorry for it all’.
This is the latest English-language novel from award-winning Gaelic poet, novelist, journalist, broadcaster and actor, Angus Peter Campbell, and the first to be published simultaneously in Gaelic and English.
Vividly evoked Scottish novel of chance encounters and of family memories, regret, love and loss.
Combines myth, music and linguistics to recount the memory of a hazy summer’s day on the Isle of Mull.
The Guga Stone, Lies, Legends and Lunacies from St Kilda by Donald S Murray
Published by , ISBN: 9781908373748
In 1930, the last inhabitants of the isle of St Kilda were evacuated to the mainland. Shortly afterwards, following several acts of vandalism by local fishermen, Calum MacKinnon was sent back to the island to guard against further damage.
Alone on the deserted island, he begins to re-imagine the conversations and stories from his years in the island port of Village Bay. He also recalls some of the experiences of its people in exile on the mainland, showing their difficulties in adjusting to a new way of life, and a diet no longer based mainly on seabirds.
The vivid prose is interspersed with poetry and illustrations, creating a colourful and insightful fictionalisation of life on remote St Kilda.
Fògradh, Fàisneachd agus Filidheachd / Parting, Prophecy, Poetry by Rev. Duncan B. Blair
Published by , ISBN: 978-1-927492-43-7
Rev. Duncan B. Blair (1815-1893) was “an excellent linguist, a good poet, and a devout man. As an accurate writer of Gaelic he had no superior.” Blair composed sacred poems, laments and secular poems and songs. Mac-Talla, the first Gaelic newspaper in the world was published in Sydney, Nova Scotia, between 1892 and 1904. Blair’s contributions to Mac-Talla were extensive. In the original Gaelic, with English translations by John Alick MacPherson, Fògradh, Fàisneachd, Filidheachd / Parting, Prophesy, Poetry includes Blair’s articles about the Highland Clearances, a number of his poems, an account of a 16th-century seer who some say foretold of the Clearances and articles about Blair’s travels around the Maritimes – all published in Mac-Talla.
Although some of Blair’s poems have been included in various collections, his prose writings have not previously been published.
Bearing the People Away- The Portable Highland Clearances Companion. by June Skinner Sawyers
Published by , ISBN: 978-1-927492-59-8
Part reference guide, part handbook, part travel guide and part resource in one portable volume, Bearing the People Away uses an encyclopedia format geared toward the general reader. The entries vary in length from brief sentences to several paragraphs. They include major Clearance sites, major and minor figures associated with the Clearances, Clearance-related sites outwith Scotland (significant parts of the Scottish Diaspora as Canada, the United States, Australia and New Zealand), places and historical events with Clearance and or Highland connections, and recordings, websites and relevant museums and organizations identified with the Highland Clearances.
June Skinner Sawyers is a Scots-born writer who is based in Chicago, USA. She has written or edited more than twenty books, many with a Scottish theme, including popular and regional histories.
In Hebridean Sharker Tex Geddes describes his exploits during the 1950s as a hunter of basking sharks in the waters of the Minch, between the Inner and Outer Hebrides. Using an adapted whaling harpoon, he and his crew stalked these huge fish often in perilous conditions, the liver of which is a valuable source of oil. Always a maverick, before World War Two Geddes had been a boxer and a rumrunner to Newfoundland. During the war he established a reputation as an expert knife-thrower and bayonet fencer and served in the Special Forces with Gavin Maxwell (author of Ring of Bright Water). He combined the hazardous pursuit of sharks with crewing the local lifeboat, ring-net fi shing, lobstering, deer-stalking and salmon poaching. He went on to purchase the tiny island of Soay, where he lived with his wife Jeanne, continued to hunt sharks and became the Laird. His story is full of adventures and fantastic descriptions of a seagoing life in the islands. It has become a Hebridean classic.
As one of the most remote corners of the British Isles, the island archipelago of St Kilda has long held a fascination for travellers from mainland Britain and beyond. The unique way of life and customs of its inhabitants has generated an enormous amount of literature over a period of hundreds of years. Kenneth Macaulay's book is one of the most significant works ever written about the islands, and is a description of what he saw there on his visit of 1763, at which time the island population had dwindled to just 88. In addition to giving vivid descriptions of the islanders themselves and their living conditions, Macaualay also offers a huge amount of information on the animals and birds found there - the sheep and cattle, and above all the wildfowl, which were used for a huge variety of purposes, including oil, shoes and medicine as well as food
Who owns Scotland? How did they get it? What happened to all the common land in Scotland? Has the Scottish Parliament made any difference? Can we get our common good land back? In The Poor Had No Lawyers, Andy Wightman, author of Who Owns Scotland, updates the statistics of landownership in Scotland and takes the reader on a voyage of discovery into Scotland’s history to find out how and why landowners got their hands on the millions of acres of land that were once held in common. He tells the untold story of how Scotland’s legal establishment and politicians managed to appropriate land through legal fixes. From Robert the Bruce to Willie Ross and from James V to Donald Dewar, land has conferred political and economic power. Have attempts to redistribute this power more equitably made any difference and what are the full implications of the recent debt-fuelled housing bubble? For all those with an interest in urban and rural land in Scotland, this updated edition of The Poor Had No Lawyers provides a fascinating analysis of one the most important political questions in Scotland – who owns Scotland and how did they get it?
Scotland’s national dish is the source of endless jokes and horror stories, yet continues to provoke curiosity around the world. With an ancient history and an eight-verse tribute penned by Robert Burns, haggis is a Scottish cultural icon. So how did it come to acquire its bad boy image and earn such mixed reviews, ranging from the devotion of its fans to the deep revulsion of the uninitiated? In this informative and light-hearted book, Jo Macsween of the famous family of Edinburgh haggis makers, expertly guides you through the myths and magic to a new realm of haggis appreciation that transcends neeps, tatties and Burns Night. Featuring fifty mouth-watering recipes, Jo rewrites the rules and demonstrates that haggis is a versatile ingredient that can be savoured at all times of day and throughout the year. She even dares to challenge the long-standing association of haggis with whisky, and recommends a new coterie of drinking companions
Fonn: The Campbells of Greepe (Music and a Sense of Place in a Gaelic Family Song Tradition) by
Published by Acair, ISBN:
A CELEBRATORY new book documenting the lives of a famed family of Gaelic singers will be officially launched on Saturday, January 19, to coincide with a special concert at Celtic Connections.
Fonn: The Campbells of Greepe (subtitled Music and a Sense of Place in a Gaelic Family Song Tradition) tells the story of a Hebridean family with a gift for music which goes back generations – and pays tribute to the place and culture that allowed them to flourish.
A quick glance at their family tree reveals seven Mod medallists, including several winners of that prestigious ‘double’ in traditional Gaelic singing: the Gold Medal and the Traditional Medal.
An t-Eilean - Taking a Line for a Walk through the Island of Skye by Angus Peter Campbell with Photographs by Cailean Maclean
Published by , ISBN:
This is an account in words and pictures of a walk taken through Skye by the award-winning writer Angus Peter Campbell and his friend the photographer Cailean Maclean. Both were brought up in South Uist, so the journey here extends well beyond Skye to their pre-electric upbringing in the Outer Hebrides: a beautifully written and photographed memoir of people, places and times. Come along to the launch of this book at The Aros Experience on Saturday 8th December.
Return migration is a largely neglected area of historical research in all countries, including Scotland. The contributors to this volume shed light on the experience of Scottish emigrants who decided to head back home, through five centuries of Scottish history, by exploiting analytical tools from history, anthropology, sociology and literature. Drawing on diverse sources, including ‘traditional’ historical sources as well as literary and ‘lived experience’ documents, this collection of essays opens up new avenues of research and features groundbreaking work.
Piping Traditions of the Isle of Skye by Bridget MacKenzie
Published by , ISBN: 9781906566555
A follow-on to three earlier books on piping traditions this book covers the Isle of Skye. There is so much material on piping in Skye that it merits a book of its own. Written for all piping enthusiasts, this is not an academic study but instead aims to pass on the piping lore that used to be handed down with the music to piping pupils, but is no longer. Written in a light and readable style, the book takes a wide sweep of the pipers, places and piping stories of the island, including notes on the background of all the tunes prescribed for the Skye competitions, discussion of the MacCrimmon and MacArthur schools, even Simon Fraser’s MacCrimmon traditions preserved in Australia, and entertaining anecdotes about a host of Skye players. This book is essential reading for any piper who wants to know about the home of piping.
Piping Tradtions of the Inner Isles by Bridget MacKenzie
Published by , ISBN: 9781906566548
A follow-on to two earlier books on piping traditions this book covers the Inner Isles from Arran to Raasay, excluding Skye, which is covered in a separate book. Written for all piping enthusiasts, this is not an academic study but instead aims to pass on the piping lore that used to be handed down with the music to piping pupils, but is no longer. Written in a light and readable style, the book takes a wide sweep of the pipers, places and piping stories of the islands, including the rich piping tradition in Tiree, the Rankins piping school on Mull, legendary figures such as jovial Andrew MacNeil in Colonsay and the great Mackay pipers of Raasay. Notes on the tunes also give guidance to the mood of a piece. This book is essential reading for any piper who wants to know about the background of the music.
'A splendid book ... These poems are like ancient, but timeless, voices arising from the very landscape of Skye, or ancestral memories expressing themselves in verse' - The Herald.
Widely regarded as the foremost poet writing today in the Gaelic language, MacNeacail casts his eye on love, aging, memory, language, politics and landscape in this masterful bilingual collection. Demonstrating MacNeacail’s usual tight mastery of form and beautifully controlled rhythm, this collection, published to mark the poet’s seventieth birthday, is a celebration of the best of contemporary Scottish poetry.
Over the Sea From Sky – To Prince Edward Island by Ian G MacDonald
Published by Grosvenor House Publishing Ltd, ISBN: 178148516X, 9781781485163
It is estimated that between the years 1770 and 1900, a total of some 7000 families, perhaps 35,000 individuals, emigrated from the Isle of Skye, Scotland! In the context of the present day population of 11,000, these statistics are extreme. So why did they leave and why did so many of them go to Prince Edward Island? This book tries to capture something of life in the two islands during the first half of the 19th century. It also follows the fortunes of Murdoch and Effy MacLeod, from Camustianavaig in Skye's Braes area, who settled in Lot 67 on 'The Island'.
PLEASE EMAIL DONALD MACDONALD AT firstname.lastname@example.org TO PURCHASE THIS BOOK.
From the low tide of the sea to the highest mountain tops by James Hunter & Cailean MacLean
Published by , ISBN: 978-1-907443-28-2
In recent years, communities in the Scottish Highlands and Islands have taken ownership of more than half a million acres – an area equivalent to that of an English county like Nottinghamshire or West Yorkshire. In places long characterised by contracting economies and shrinking populations, this remarkable development has resulted in new homes, new businesses, greatly enhanced self-confidence and the attraction of lots of new residents.
Many of Scotland’s most important poets grew up or chose to live on Scottish islands. This anthology pays tribute to the islands’ creative output by bringing together a huge array of poetic talent, from the internationally-renowned – Sorley Maclean, Iain Crichton Smith, George Mackay Brown, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Hugh MacDairmid – to those fantastic poets deserving of more attention – Jim Mainland, Aonghas MacNeacail, Meg Bateman, Alex Cluness, Jen Hadfield, and many more – in one wonderful collection. With poems exploring the themes of love, language, landscape, identity and belonging, These Islands, We Sing is a significant and heartfelt celebration of poetry and place.
Editor Kevin MacNeil was born and raised in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. Novelist, poet, playwright, editor, aphorist and lyricist, his books include A Method Actor’s Guide to Jekyll and Hyde,The Stornoway Way, Love and Zen in the Outer Hebrides and Be Wise Be Otherwise. He is currently working on an album with William Campbell, a new novel, a film, a play and a travelogue-memoir based on his 1,300km cycle down the Danube in September 2009 for two cancer charities
This is quite simply the best, the most detailed and authoritative history of Skye yet written. Following the appearance of the first edition in 1930, the small print run sold out immediately, leaving those lucky enough to possess a copy, with and eagerly sought after an invaluable source of knowledge on the Isle of Skye. A second, equally popular, edition was published in 1994, and now a third edition of this enduring work has been prepared, edited by Cailean Maclean, to include references, bibliographical sources and appendices, full translation of Gaelic texts and numerous illustrations. This magisterial survey of an island and its people is once again available to all those whose lives have been touched by its landscape and traditions. To buy this direct, please contact Carmina Gadelica.
This Scottish Mountaineering Club climbers' guidebook details all the summer and winter climbing to be found in the Cuillin mountains on the Isle of Skye. The Cuillin of Skye has long been regarded as one of the finest climbing areas in the UK. This guidebook is written by a Mountain Guide with an in-depth knowledge of the area. Since the successful 1996 edition of this guide, there have been many new climbs. It is fully comprehensive and up to date covering both summer and winter climbs. It is companion volume to the forthcoming Skye - Sea-cliffs and Outcrops guide. It is full colour throughout with action pictures and detailed photo-diagrams. It is user friendly in a successful and well presented format. It includes page marker ribbon to ease the location of climbs. Mike Lates is a climber and mountain guide who lives and works on the Isle of Skye, his knowledge of the Cuillin Mountains from both a personal and professional point of view is considerable. To buy this direct, please contact Carmina Gadelica.
SCOTLAND - Mapping the Nation by Christopher Fleet
Published by Polygon Publications, ISBN: 9781841589695
Whilst documents and other written material are obvious resources that help shape our view of the past, maps too can say much about a nation's history. This is the first book to take maps seriously as a form of history, from the earliest representations of Scotland by Ptolemy in the second century AD to the most recent form of Scotland's mapping and geographical representation in GIS, satellite imagery and SATNAV. Compiled by three experts who have spent their lives working with maps, Scotland: Mapping the Nation offers a fascinating and thought-provoking perspective on Scottish history which is beautifully illustrated with complete facsimiles and details of hundreds of the most significant manuscript and printed maps from the National Library of Scotland and other institutions, including those by Timothy Pont, Joan Blaeu and William Roy, amongst many others.
Sorley MacLean - Collected Poems by Sorley MacLean
Published by Polygon Publications, ISBN: 9781846971907
This Collected Poems of Sorley MacLean brings together published poetry from MacLean’s own edited volumes of poetry, poetry previously published in various magazines, literary journals and anthologies, and poetry which has never been published before. The poems will be given in their original Gaelic with English translations. The volume opens with a biographical summary of MacLean’s childhood on Raasay, his life at university and war experiences, and examines MacLean’s effect on Gaelic and Scottish literature, and his literary, political and philosophical influences, which included Gaelic traditional song, Romanticism and Modernism, as well as Communism and Fascism. To buy this direct, please contact Carmina Gadelica.
Published by DB Publishing, ISBN: ISBN 978-1-85983-773-3
Described by author and photographer, Jon Pear, as ‘a new way of seeing Skye’, he invites the reader to explore this exciting and vibrant island with a superb collection of over 500 carefully selected full-colour photographs. A magical place, romantic and rugged, it is an island which has something for everyone.
Having held a passion for the island, for over 40 years, he made home on the island 6 years ago and over the years has amassed a wonderful collection of favourite photograph moments from which to choose when crafting this book. Skye Island Beautiful is more than simply a photo guide, it is a celebration of this wonderful island and each image is accompanied by an informative caption. The Isle of Skye has so much to offer and the book provides a fantastic glimpse into island life, and is guaranteed to appeal to residents and visitors alike. Taking the reader on a charismatic journey, it looks at the hills, wildlife, villages and flora and fauna of this magical place, and shows why Skye is truly an Island Beautiful.
Price below includes UK postage. Oversees postage will apply at cost.
You have the chance to WIN a signed copy of this book on our competitions page, ending Monday 9th January 2012 at 5pm.