My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Time taken to read - in and out as able over 4 days
Pages - 160
Publisher - Polygon
Source - ARC
Blurb from Goodreads
It's 1968, and the fishermen of Kinloch are preparing to celebrate the old New Year on the twelfth of January. The annual pilgrimage to the Auld Stones is a tradition that goes back beyond memory, and young Hamish, first mate on the Girl Maggie, is chuffed that he’s been invited to this exclusive gathering – usually reserved for the most senior members of Kinloch's fishing community.
Meanwhile, it appears that the new owners of the Firdale Hotel are intent upon turning their customers teetotal, such is the exorbitant price they are charging for whisky. Wily skipper Sandy Hoynes comes up with a plan to deliver the spirit to the thirsty villagers at a price they can afford through his connections with a local still-man.
But when the Revenue are tipped off, it looks as though Hoynes and Hamish’s mercy mission might run aground. Can the power of the Auld Stones come to their rescue, and is the reappearance of a face from Hoynes' past a sign for good or ill?
It is the 1960's, location is Kinloch, Scotland, the fishermen are preparing to celebrate and keep old traditions. To be invited along with the fishermen on such a "quest" is an honour not bestowed to many. Add into that a wee sneaky additional "mission" getting some bootleg whiskey into the hands of the locals whilst trying to avoid the authorities!
I loved reading about young Hamish, after reading the Daley series and we get wee bits of Hamish I am always wanting more, his back story, he is an interesting character. We get a bit more of that in this book. A book that looks at traditions, the livelihood of the locals, the perils of the sea (and trying to get some booze sneaked across the waters). Old stories/ghosts/history of the people/traditions - Scottish dialect, it was just a nice break from reality across the waters and time.
I hadn't realised this was book two so have just bought and downloaded the first "A Large Measure of Snow". You can absolutely read this as a standalone as I have, I love Hamish and his "gift" so reading about him as a youngster, his mentor/people and why Kinloch is a special wee place. As we have come to expect and know from Meyrick we also have a few chuckles along the way and being a bit spooked, it was just a perfect blend I thought! Looking forward to reading book one and hopefully we may see a third? 4.5/5 for us this time.