Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Independent 6533/Phi – But it’s not Friday…

Posted by neildubya on September 24th, 2007

neildubya.

Now I know how one of regular commenters felt when we had a puzzle themed around Elvis. According to his Wikipedia entry, Terry 13A was the best-selling UK author in the 1990s and has sold something like 50 million books so I’m probably in a minority in never having read one of them.

Across
1 J,INGO(t) – this, like all of the thematic entries, was a guess for me but not a tricky one with J?N?O filled in.
4 MARY in S,DIP (all reversed) – one of the last few to go in.
8 NEW YEAR – take L (fifty) away from “early” to get a NEW YEAR.
11 MOVING PICT,(SURE)* – another stab in the dark, helped by the fact that I knew that a PICT was a member of an ancient British people.
13 RATCHET in PT – my heart sank when I got this as I’ve never read one of his novels and couldn’t even name a single title of one of his books.I knew that some were part of a series called Discworld but that’s all. The thematic answers were the last ones I filled in and were obviously all guesses; some confident, some not.
15 RUM,BA[-d] – I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve seen this dance in a crossword.
18 (LANCASTER)* – ANCESTRAL.
20 LORDS AND LADIES – the checking letters helped an awful lot with this one.
24 RAP,IDLY
 
Down
1 JA,NE
2 NEW,POT,AT,O
3 hidden in “rOBE LIkely”
4 PERI,GEE – I couldn’t get this as I didn’t know PERI = “fairy” and PERIGEE was also new to me. Apparently, it’s “the point in the orbit of the Moon or an artificial satellite around the Earth when it is closest to the Earth”.
5 REP,R,IN,[-i]T
6 (SMART NAME)* – MEN AT ARMS. The first thematic clue I got but it didn’t really help me with the rest of the puzzle as I didn’t know who wrote it!
14 (CD PLAYERS)* – CLEPSYDRA. Handily, this word appeared in a puzzle last week so this shouldn’t have tripped too many people up.
16 U in SORE,DRUM (all going up).
18 N in (DAY ONE)* – ANNOYED.
19 CO,LETTE[-r] – I got this novelist before I got 13A.

7 Responses to “Independent 6533/Phi – But it’s not Friday…”

  1. Colin Blackburn says:

    I had heard of Pratchett and I even have one of his novels, unread, on my bookshelves somewhere. However, I don’t even remember the title of the one I’ve got never mind any others. I got several of the thematic answers without having a clue who wrote them and, being on the No 15 to Durham, I was unable to check who was responsible for JINGO or ERIC or even MEN AT MARS (well, it was a guess.)

  2. eimi says:

    Phi submitted this puzzle to coincide with the publication of Terry Pratchett’s latest Discworld novel. I must admit that I haven’t read any either, but all the titles Phi used were perfectly acceptable English phrases, although the clues lacked a definition other than the Pratchett reference.

  3. conradcork says:

    I got all the themed answers before getting Pratchett, all I know of whom is that he wrote the foreword for my edition of Brewer. (Good clue for the author’s name, btw). But I was a little distracted along the way by ‘Men at Arms’, since that is the title of the first part of Evelyn Waugh’s ‘Sword of Honour’ trilogy.

  4. alanjc says:

    I too haven’t been able to read any Pratchett but got the titles easy enough so it seems there are more than a few of us.

  5. Phi says:

    I thought it only sensible to choose titles that were also common parlance.

    What I wasn’t prepared for was a last-minute change of release date to last Thursday!

  6. nmsindy says:

    Yes, that was a good idea cos this solver worked out three or four of them without being familiar with them. Like Conrad Cork thought of Waugh, but knew because of the enumeration it could not be right. A trilogy well worth reading.

    Once I got the three or four, I Googled which revealed all. Had heard the name but that’s about all. Slowest Phi solve of 2007 for me, but all understood in the end.

  7. Fletch says:

    A small sample admittedly but one might conclude that crossworders aren’t big on Pratchett, or vice versa.

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