i Prize Cryptic Crossword 2480 by Phi

January 26, 2019

Saturday 19th January 2019

An impressively well disguised theme last weekend – the novels of Louis de Bernieres: NOTWITHSTANDING (9a), BIRDS WITHOUT WINGS (22d, 2d, 23a) and CAPTAIN CORELLI’S MANDOLIN (27a, 17d, 6d). What made it so well hidden was the lack of the usual tells that a theme was there, like short lights, negative checking or lots of obscurities.  Nice grid filling indeed.

But then again it was Phi, so maybe ‘Corelli’ alone should have been enough to send me looking for the obvious novel; I just thought it was Phi doing his classical composer thing again, so didn’t twig.

Good clues and an enjoyable solve with just one query on the &Lit anagram at 13a. I can’t help thinking ‘pearl’d’ is a typo – don’t they mean ‘pear’ld’?

COD?  3d Stature’s something like A1? (6)

All the answers from 2014 in Duncan Shiell’s blog here.

7 Responses to “i Prize Cryptic Crossword 2480 by Phi”

  1. batarde said

    Ah, that would be it, then. Never read him. I failed to make any notes last week and can’t remember the first thing about the crossword so that probably means that it was agreeable enough without rousing the passions either way. Should’ve looked harder for a theme.

  2. sprouthater said

    Wondered if there was some sort of computer linked theme going on but obviously not, good puzzle though with just 1ac standing out as a rather weak clue, if you didn’t know the answer you were going to struggle to get it from the clue.

  3. jonofwales said

    I should have spotted the theme, but didn’t. Probably because I was keen on finishing to actually get round to reading the paper proper. Enjoyable anyway. I did make notes but can’t read them now. There is though a smiley face by the side of the grid, which I take to be a good sign.

  4. Michaelatcobblerscottage said

    Missed the theme altogether, but I see from my note-to-self last week that I enjoyed it and had no quibbles. Likewise today, in case I forget.

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