TLS Crossword 1160 by Talos – January 27, 2017

An enjoyably eclectic mix of ancient and modern, domestic and foreign.

Bit of a crime thing gong on, with not one but two New York crime series and an archvillain trying to get rid of trace evidence at 13D. I often wonder if very-much-alive authors such as 6d’s Sarah Waters get excited about making it into the TLS and Google it like crazy. In case they do … Hello, Sarah!


1 BUTLIN(s). Ron Butlin was for a few years the Edinburgh ‘Makar’, or laureate
4 TEASDALE is TEAS and ALE opened by D(uke)
Sarah Teasdale, who died by her own hand in 1933, might be best known for giving Ray Bradbury the title and idea for his unforgettable short story There Will Come Soft Rains
10 ON THE ROAD Kerouac, for reasons best known to himself and his dealer, typed the original on a continuous roll of tracing paper known as “the scroll” which he then had to cut into pages. Bonkers but brilliant.
14 ODE is hidden and reversed in “PiecE DOnne ..”
Sir Stephen Spender’s self-reflecting novel was The Temple
21 MAESTRO Anagram of “Some art”
23 ARP ‘head ‘ of PAR (normal) moved to the right to give Jean Arp, who also called himself Hans Arp if he happened to be speaking German. Bonkers but brilliant again.
27 THE READER Anagram of “deer heart” for Bernhard Schlink’s 1995 novel
29 MISCHIEF The 45th of Ed McBain’s 55 87th Precinct crime novels sounds like ‘Miss’ plus chief (principal)


3 ICE is vice minus the versus
6 SARAH WATERS Anagram of “has .. a Satre”
7 AMY DORRIT was the Little Dorrit herself in Dickens’ tale of systemic societal injustice. Thank heavens we don’t have that any more
8 EXETER Sounds like ‘exiter’
13 Anagram of “hated by calm” to give LADY MACBETH. As Gil Grissom would say, you can’t get rid of trace
16 EURIPIDES Anagram of “I preside” + U (summit or head of Ugandan)
18 DOGBERRY Head-spinning clue.
It’s fruit+to follow ordered differently, ie DOG(to follow) + BERRY (fruit)
20 DRAFTEE is D(note)+RAF(service)+TEE
Time O’Brien was best known for his short stories about the Vietnam War, into which he was drafted in ’68
21 MILLER, Henry was effectively the narrator and a character in T of C
22 HARLEM is L inside HAREM. Coffin Ed was a character in Chester Himes’ Harlem Detective novels. Himes was a terrific writer who should be read, as should his often shocking life story (which ended with happiness found in France and Spain)
25 Lonne ELDER III takes the W(ife) out of welder

9 comments on “TLS Crossword 1160 by Talos – January 27, 2017”

  1. 48 minutes for me, with little occasion to Google except to confirm what I thought I knew. I knew the joyous Byron quote, even if I can’t for the life of me remember what he had against Castlereagh.
    Thanks for that info on Kerouac’s writing habits: the clue didn’t make sense to me other than “A novel Jack” which set off a ping in the mind and blurred the rest of the clue.
    I rather liked the CHARLES WEBB clue, once I remembered who wrote Charlotte’s Web, and engineered it as required to get what turns out to be the author of The Graduate, which I didn’t know.
    Oddly enough, the clue that gave me most trouble was BOOK CASE: easy enough, but as a “mere” cryptic clue it resisted well.
    Thanks for both the research and the enthusiastic presentation. I’ve occasionally wondered if the TLS has to get permission from the living for their name to be used. I hope any such request is greeted with the same enthusiasm as an invitation to appear on Desert Island Discs. It should be!
    1. Permissions from living people: We don’t ask. When a book by a living writer was the basis of a theme for a GK crossword I emailed them to warn them it was happening, but got no reply to indicate whether they were delighted or appalled.
      1. Hmm. There has to be an angle there with respect to publicity both for the author and the TLS. According to this blog, sales of Penelope Fitzgerald have skyrocketed since her exposure in TLS 1158 (Olivia ordered some from Amazon). Perhaps we could allow authors to put MTLS after their names: it does mark a sort of achievement, after all.

        Edited at 2017-02-17 12:47 pm (UTC)

    2. Yes, if it was me I’d buy about 10 copies and frame them. And ten more when the solution was published!

      I should have included the Graduate author clue, I realise. You and I probably weren’t alone in not realising the movie was based on a book at all. Mention The Graduate and everyone thinks Dustin Hoffman, Anne Bancroft, Simon & Garfunkel, and that wedding scene. Poor old Charles Webb is quite forgotten. I was going to say I hope he got a lot of money for the film rights, but I just Wikied him and found he got precisely $20,000. On the other hand, reading more of his life story, I suspect he didn’t much care at the time.

      And I’ve also just discovered that he’s also still with us and living in, of all places, Eastbourne.

      So … Hi Charles!

      1. Very important place! I’m sure you’ve all heard about the 3 Listener/ST/TLS crossword people at the grammar school together. Plus Debussy’s stay at the Grand Hotel, where you can see La Mer from the windows of some rooms, but his visit seems to have been too late for any work on it except proof checking. Which nicely leads me back to doing some proper work.

        Edited at 2017-02-17 11:48 am (UTC)

  2. DNK the poet, had completely forgotten the camps and like Z I just couldn’t see the bookcase, so I had **T*I* at 1a which stumped me for quite a while. Also DNK about the author of The Graduate. The only Charles author I could think of for 24a was Lamb which didn’t seem quite right. All in all a lethargic 54 minutes, still I liked the puzzle. It’s only 3 weeks but I find I forget much of what I was thinking at the time – this is not good. On the other hand, this has been rather a distracting month (only 3 years and 48 weeks to go) this side of the pond. Thanks Sotira.
  3. I had no idea what was going on with the ON THE ROAD clue, despite having read it (and it’s in my David Bowie 100-book reading list, so I may have to read it again one day – currently a little way into Isherwood’s “Mr Norris Changes Trains”, which is proving enjoyably seedy) so thanks for the explanation!

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