A Puzzle by Jaws
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
Today we welcome Jaws with his debut puzzle. 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 Jaws. I am tempted to make this review snappy. However, this was a promising start. In terms of the technical cryptic construction of the of the clues, there were only a few points to highlight. Some of the words were grid-fillers but they were largely fairly clued. There were too many take the initial letters of the following words type of clues and a few repetitions of wordplay indicators but these can be corrected easily. A few of the clues had surface readings that needed attention but again, this is something that comes with practice. Overall the commentometer is a respectable 3/30 or 10%.
1 Excited talk starts to annoy rather dangerous bird (7)
BUZZARD – A four letter word for excited talk followed by the initial letters (stats to) of the fifth to seventh words of the clue.
5 Eagle and lion joined segment of angry phone-in (7)
GRYPHON – The answer is hidden in (segment of) the final two words of the clue.
9 Queen’s after game animal (5)
TIGER – The abbreviation for the current queen after a three letter word for a children’s game.
10 Smashed iPhone then pain returned keeping up with the Joneses (9)
NEOPHILIA – An anagram (smashed) of IPHONE followed by a a reversal (returned) of a three letter word meaning pain.
11 Damaged, working female enters hotel (2,3,5)
ON THE FRITZ – A two letter word meaning working followed by the abbreviation for female inside the name (3,4) of a London hotel. As the solution is an American term, this should be indicated. A story could be told by having “Trump’s damaged working female entering hotel.
12 Vast digital photo, perhaps? (4)
EPIC – Split 1-3, the solution may indicate an on-line (digital) picture (photo, perhaps).
14 End of the line for this little piggy? (4,2,6)
WENT TO MARKET – Cryptic definition of one of the lines in the children’s verse about little piggies or toes.
18 Blackmailed – horrendous month’s ordeal! (4,2,6)
HELD TO RANSOM – An anagram (horrendous) of MONTHS ORDEAL.
21 Units On Her Majesty’s Service (4)
OHMS – Double definition of the units of resistance and the abbreviation for the final four words of the clue.
22 Carrots or game pie, perhaps? (6,4)
RABBIT FOOD – A six letter game animal followed by a four letter word for something of which a pie is an example.
25 Editor’s friend Derek starts to expect Times’ errant kerning – even yesterday (6,3)
DELETE KEY – A three letter abbreviation for the name Derek followed by the initial letters (starts to) of the final six words of the clue. Try to avoid repeating wordplay indicators. Starts to has been used in 1a.
26 Flavour provided by ammonium amines (5)
UMAMI – The answer is hidden in (provided by) the final two words of the clue.
27 Immortal fighter in day’s first drug overdose (7)
DEMIGOD – A three letter name of a fighter jet inside the first letter of day and the abbreviations for ecstasy (drug) and overdose.
28 Find university close to Hull’s origins (7)
UNEARTH – The abbreviation for University followed by a four letter word meaning close and the initial letters (origins) of to hull.
1 City then back? Anticlimax (6)
BATHOS – A four letter SW spa city followed by a two letter word meaning then reversed (back).
2 Endless gyoza mixed with endless tea, fertilised egg (6)
ZYGOTE – An anagram (mixed) of GYOZ (endless GYOZA) TE (endless tea). I usually give latitude for surface readings but this one is definitely one that needs to be binned in place of something the has a sensible meaning in its own right.
3 Contracts a setter in new Telegraph supplement, initally (10)
AGREEMENTS – The A from the clue followed by s two letter word for the setter inside a five letter word meaning new followed by the initial letters of Telegraph Supplement. Watch spellings. Initially is missing the third I in the clue.
4 Money from day in state (5)
DINAR – The abbreviation for day followed by the IN from the clue and the abbreviation for Arkansas.
5 Write for nowt, desperate, in deserted place (5,4)
GHOST TOWN – A five letter word meaning to write for someone followed by an anagram desperate of NOWT.
6 Hush up after, ya posh sassenachs! (4)
YAHS – A two letter word meaning hush reversed (up) after the YA from the clue.
7 Part-shaft, part-blade, part-fish (4,4)
HALF PIKE – A four word for part of something followed by a four letter freshwater predatory fish.
8 Time-savers for frenzied centaurs (4,4)
NEAR CUTS – An anagram (frenzied) of CENTAURS.
13 She tells stories about cute senora (10)
RACONTEUSE – An anagram (about) of CUTE SENORA. Putting about as an anagram indicator before the letters to be rearranged does not work.
15 Sailor-man (educated south of Cambodia) surfaced (9)
TARMACKED – A three letter word for a sailor followed by a three letter informal way of describing a man followed by the abbreviation for educated after (south of) the IVR code for Cambodia.
16 Cloaked Dr housed tormented (8)
SHROUDED – An anagram (tormented) of DR HOUSED.
17 Florida cleric embraces Florida deception (8)
FLIMFLAM – The state abbreviation for Florida followed by a a four letter word for a Muslim cleric around the state abbreviation for Florida.
19 Goes up in a balloon? Nonsense! (3,3)
HOT AIR – Double definition of what rises from the burner in a balloon and another expression for nonsense.
20 Bash up hunk? Strange (6)
ODDISH – A two letter word for a bash or party reversed (up) followed by another name of a person who is a hunk. Another repetition of wordplay with up as a reversal.
23 Marsh inlet opens up at first (5)
BAYOU – A three letter word for an inlet followed by the initial letters (at first) of opens up.
24 Lads’ weekend? Dear, by the sounds (4)
STAG – A creature that is a deer (dear by the sound of it).