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10 thoughts on “Tight Little Island

  1. says:

    This book is very amusing, and it is based upon a true story It gives a great insight into why the simple lives of Highlanders and Islanders are to be so admired and envied.The SS Cabinet Minister runs aground on the rocks of one of the Hebridean islands The locals, naturally, take advantage of the availability of the ship s cargo whisky The authorities have other ideas about what should happen to this precious cargo.The conflict which ensues, and some of the cunning methods that the locals employ, are hysterically funny I am sure that you will enjoy this delightful tale.

  2. says:

    One of the most fun books I have read in a long time Loved it

  3. says:

    This was an excellent book about an island Cecily reminded me of this author in her review on DHL just now in one of his short stories on islands.

  4. says:

    I waffled between 3 4 stars so I guess 3.5 The reason I waffled so much is that I found the plot hilarious but had some trouble with the Scot dialects I have trouble reading dialects of all kinds The interspersed Gaelic didn t give me as much trouble as my edition had a glossary of Gaelic terms with how to pronounce them their meaning.Here are some examples of the dialect these are fairly clear as to their meaning but illustrate the way the dialects were written I m sorry, Captain MacPhee, but unless the peer comes by Monday s poat the peer will be where the whisky is, and that s nowhere at all said the big hotel keeper Chorge will neffer be having the courage to tell Mistress Campbell he s going to be married to her Neffer he declared Not unless he d trunk a tram the size of Loch Sleeport itself, and then I believe it would turn to water inside his stamac when he saw his mother gazing at him A Dhia, Dhia, don t be saying that, Hugh The crapefruits wass never in poxes Chust lying on the tra gh Crapefruits chaca

  5. says:

    I grew up with the Ealing Comedy black and white film of this book and have always known the story The book turned out to be a disappointment Full of redundant detail, the tale moves at snail s pace weighted down by quite pointless episodes and dialogue which would have been better rendered as reported speech Compton Mackenzie s style tends to the trite in description with an irritatingly self conscious and pompous diction who has ever doffed a dressing gown Worse, he indulges himself to the extent of attempting to reproduce the islanders accent phonetically, with not much success If ever there was an author in need of a strict editor, this is the man.

  6. says:

    Three solid sturdy stars for the story plus one for the sheer amount of whisky overflowing from each page, even when there is a shortage of it.

  7. says:

    I see from the inscription on the flyleaf of my copy of this book that I bought it in August 1981 I have a recollection of having read it, and the story is familiar from having seen the film version, but I could not remember anything about the book itself i read it again as I was going back to the Scottish Highlands, and thought it might be amusing.Like the over eager knight at the end of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade , I chose poorly At the risk of being branded a heretic, this is quite simply an atrocious book, and represents one of those rare instances where the film is a great improvement on the original novel This was like a pseudo literary version of Harry Lauder, playing to the worst music hall stereotypes of Scotsmen I was going to say that can t remember when I last encountered such two dimensional characters, but actually that would not be true I recall grappling with equally inadequate character in The Rival Monster , which was also written by Mackenzie I imagine that if I were to see the film again I would find it hopelessly dated, but I think it would still retain some humour, a quality which is conspicuous by its paucity in the book.

  8. says:

    A good story but which unfortunately just continued to a predictable, inevitable finale without adding any unusual exciting twist to the overall plot Lots of interesting characters introduced but it did become a little confusing when trying to remember their job descriptions roles in society and which of the two isles of Todday they actually lived in Good without being spectacular 3.5 stars for me.

  9. says:

    Sergeant Major Alfred Ernest Odd returns to the Hebridean islands of Great and Little Todday in wartime and finds them in the middle of rationing with food supplies very low Not only are food supplies low but whisky is almost non existent and the islanders are not happy with the situation.In addition the home guard are under suspicion as they are deemed to be not doing their jobs properly and the locals think that Odd has come to spy upon them and report back to headquarters.There are a variety of comic characters in the script with one of them George Campbell well under his mother s thumb So much so that when he wants to marry Catriona he dare not mention it to his mother so he sweats on the outcome of the relationship for some considerable time.Some relief is brought when a ship is wrecked off the coast and the cargo turns out to be a supply of whisky bound for Russia The locals begin gathering it in and hiding it away before the authorities can move in and as a consequence things get a little bit easier, and happier in the Todday islands, one of which is of the catholic faith and one of the protestant faith, which in itself causes some problems.The whisky is enjoyed, the community comes together, the home guard escapes any reprimands, George Campbell braves his mother to inorm her of his marriage and life goes on idyllcally There are many gaelic phrases in the text, which can prove frustrating, however there is a glossary at the back Finally, having seen the film and read the book, I am loathe to say that the former was better than the latter.

  10. says:

    I have start off by saying that I m a singer in a Celtic band and I don t just sing about whiskey, but I love the stuff Reading this book for me was like finding myself surrounded by a room full of kindred spirits There were so many things to love about this book, but really at its heart was the culture of Gaelic speaking Scotland It is culture where nothing is ever too serious, yet the passion for life is the poetry of the air they breathe Music, dancing, and just good Craic with friends is the pulse of the people, and the lubricant that smooths things out is Whiskey, Whiskey Galore.Do yourself a favor, read this book You ll not regret it.

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