A Puzzle by Jammy
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
Jammy is the latest new setter to put his head above the parapet. As usual, the setter will be delighted to receive feedback from you, the solvers. I do ask that you remember that for most setters this is a new experience, so please only offer constructive criticism.
A review by Prolixic follows:
Welcome to Jammy. A good start. Although some of the clues might have offended, it is a reminder that the tone of a crossword should be targeted to the intended audience. There were a few repetitions but otherwise apart from polishing some of the surface readings to make more natural sentences, there is little to comment on. Apologies for the rather brief review. i have been busy celebrating no longer having teenage children!
The commentometer reads as 3.5 / 30 or 11.66%.
1 See 23
7 Murder where noises may heard in the theatre (3)
OFF – A three letter slang term for murder is also follows the word noises in the theatrical stage direction indicating sounds coming from the wings. There is a missing word as the clue should be “may be heard”.
9 Roofing operative goes around burning again (5)
RELIT – A reversal (goes around) of another word for someone who puts roofs on a building.
10 I pursue lead in interminably riotous feast, leaving unconscious (9)
REFLEXIVE – A four letter word for an electric lead followed by the I from the clue inside a five letter word for a riotous feast with the final letter removed (interminably). Some editors would require I may pursue as there is a difference between I used as a pronoun and the verb pursue and I used as a letter in its own right that would require “I pursues” for the cryptic reading. Perhaps “One pursues lead” would have been better.
11 Bachelor attired in athletic garb? (9)
SINGLETON – Split 7, 2 this would indicate an athlete is wearing a type of running vest.
12 Order cake before party (5)
BUNCH – A three letter word for a cake before the abbreviation for Companion of Honour (order).
13 Volcano found in energy state (7)
VIETNAM – A four letter name of a volcano in Italy inside a three letter word for energy.
15 Absent, but supposedly present where will is (4)
AWAY – Split 1,3 the answer would complete the phrase “where there’s a will there’s * ***”.
18 Big-mouthed water carrier/spectator drops six (4)
EWER – Another word for a spectator without the Roman numerals for 6.
20 German article in cipher is soporific (7)
CODEINE – The German masculine indefinite article inside a four letter word for a cipher. There is a fair bit of repetition of using A in B where other containment indicators could be used.
23/1A/19 Disappearing act stages comeback? (3,2,11,7)
LAW OF DIMINISHING RETURNS – I am not sure that there is an entirely rational explanation for this clue. It seems to be partly cryptic with act giving the law as in a statutory and stages comeback being the returns with disappearing giving diminishing but the whole clue does not really give a definition of the whole. A nice try but it misses the mark.
24 Italian diner broadcast extravagant opera etc. retrospectively (9)
TRATTORIA – A reversal (retrospectively) of a three letter word meaning broadcast, the abbreviation for over the top and something of which an opera is an example. Using opera, etc suggests that the plural “arts” is required but the singular art is all that is needed.
26 Crossword compiler’s companion, and hence Isaac’s son, right in the middle (9)
THESAURUS – The name of one of Isaac’s sons and the abbreviation for right inside (in the middle) of a four letter word meaning hence.
27 Notorious branch chopper chopped tree (5)
BEECH – The name of the infamous cutter of Britain’s railway network without the final three letters (chopped). It is usual for chopped simply to refer to the removal of the last letter, not the deletion of an arbitrary number of letters.
28 Welsh town known for literary fodder? (3)
HAY – Cryptic definition of Welsh town on the river Wye where there is an annual literary festival.
29 Ostrich is in outlandish performance (11)
HISTRIONICS – An anagram (outlandish) of OSTRICH IS IN.
1 Extract about jihadist group’s contemptuous (8)
DERISIVE – A word meaning extract or come from around the abbreviation of Islamic State.
2 Fake illness makes old lady tarry (8)
MALINGER – A two letter word for an old later and a six letter word meaning to tarry.
3 Region down south pertaining to buttocks (5)
NATAL – Double definition the first being a province of South Africa and the second being an adjective relating to the buttocks.
4 Hateful people keep rubbish in hairy sack (7)
SCROTUM – A four letter word for hateful people includes (keep in) a three letter word for rubbish. As others have pointed out, the anatomical description is a sac, so perhaps a homophone indicator should have been added.
5 Trendy admirer thanks Spanish princess (7)
INFANTA – A two letter word for trendy, a three letter word for an admirer and a two letter word meaning thanks.
6 Old codger in drag turned up holding beery stew (9)
GREYBEARD – Revers the drag from the clue and include an anagram (stew) of BEERY.
7 Place of uprising? (6)
ORIENT – The place of the rising sun! Not sure the this quite hits the mark.
8 Retiring pixie: bashful, soft and thick (6)
FLESHY – A reversal (retiring) of a three letter word for a pixie and a three letter word meaning bashful.
14 Novel and literary genre make fast breaking story (9)
NEWSFLASH – A three letter word meaning novel followed by the abbreviation for science fiction (literary genre) and a four letter word meaning tie or make fast.
16 One-nation Tory has nationality coming under notice (8)
DISRAELI – The single letter for a type of notice placing an embargo in a news story followed by the nationality of a middle-easterner. I think that notice on its own is not quite sufficient to clue the D. Perhaps press notice would have been better.
17 Repeatedly goes over her back and remains (8)
REHASHES – Reverse (back) the her from the clue and follow with another word meaning burnt remains.
19 See 23 Across
20 Blimey! Hugging backside is not so refined (7)
COARSER – A thee letter word meaning blimey includes (hugging) a four letter word for backside.
21 Most of spy agency admit being drunk and defect (6)
GLITCH – The abbreviation for the UK covert communications agency with the final letter removed (most of) around a three letter word meaning drunk.
22 Rather quaint, extremely dotty and robustly traditional (6)
TWEEDY – A four letter word meaning rather quaint followed by the outer letters (extremely) of dotty.
25 Bill has two loves, though it tends not to be mentioned in polite society (5)
TABOO – A three letter word for a bar bill and the letter representing love or zero twice.