i Cryptic Crossword 2070 Alchemi

September 26, 2017

This worked perfectly for me: a puzzle with a ghost theme which I spotted, but only after completion. I therefore have the double satisfaction of having solved it without a suspicion of what ought to be lurking in there, plus the “aha” moment. If you’re thinking “theme? what theme?”, all is revealed by Alchemi himself over at Fifteensquared in comment 8, where he also unburdens himself of some trenchant views on what is and isn’t worthwhile in this context, which I happen to share.

All that aside, good puzzle, wasn’t it? No obscure vocabulary, plenty of clever and inventive clues, and a nice middle of the road level of difficulty. A creditable tally of ticks today, mostly clustered at the bottom, so a tip of the hat to Alchemi for 22, 23, 28 and 31. However, the clue of the day sticks out a mile:

13ac: “Aligned anew, put off about … about … about … about … about … about the onset of influenza (10)”

Solved in an instant; thorough parsing took a lot longer.

7 Responses to “i Cryptic Crossword 2070 Alchemi”

  1. Alchemi said

    Thanks for the compliment. I’d forgotten about the ghost theme myself.

  2. jonofwales said

    I guessed there would be some sort of theme, but it totally passed me by. A good puzzle, anyway, though for me this was about as hard as they get, more like a Friday toughie than the Quixote substitute our Fifteensquared blogger seemed to think this was.

    For those still hungry for more, BTW, our Saturday blogger has a puzzle up today on the Independent site.

  3. dtw42 said

    I’m more with you there, JoW; found it quite chewy. Didn’t spot the theme even after coming here and learning that there was one. Didn’t understand the parsing for 22dn or 28ac; didn’t even attempt to unpick the parsing of 13ac – just put them all in once there were enough crossing letters to be sure of the defs.

  4. sprouthater said

    While I didn’t find this too difficult to solve the parsing of 13ac, 28ac and 23dn was a different matter altogether. After reading the blog I get 22dn but 28ac is just a bit too clever for me and 13ac well I’m none the wiser. Didn’t spot the theme but then I find them tedious much rather listen to Yes or ELP.

  5. Cornick said

    Enjoyed that. Middle of the Indy range of difficulty, I’d say, with AndyT’s COD worth the price of the paper on its own.
    Glad too for the education on the theme – I must be a Philistine because I love Dark Side of the Moon and Wish You Were Here…

    Oh ,and thanks for the plug JoW

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