A Puzzle by Meles
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
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 a contented Prolixic follows.
To begin with an excellent first crossword is not unusual but to follow with an improved crossword is rarer. This was another barnstorming Rookie performance from Meles. One measure of the quality of a crossword is how long it takes to explain the clues. Even with more difficult crosswords, a good one can be explained easily. For Meles crossword, the explanations almost wrote themselves. Only two minor comments mean that the commentometer reads as 1/30 or 3.3%.
7 End of night exodus unsettled DJs (7)
TUXEDOS – An anagram (unsettled) of T (last letter of night) EXODUS.
8 Like Putin, Iran’s angry with US involvement (7)
RUSSIAN – An anagram (angry) of IRANS includes (involvement) the US from the clue.
9 Sound games from both sides (4)
PEEP – The abbreviation for physical exercise twice with the second reversed (from both sides).
10 Local area promises harmony but it’s nowhere to be seen (9)
COMMUNITY – A seven-letter word meaning promises without the iTS (nowhere to be seen) followed by a five-letter word meaning harmony.
12 Wind second hands (5)
SCREW – The abbreviation for second followed by a four-letter word for the members of a ship’s staff (hands).
13 Like some pans, not made of wood? (3-5)
NON-STICK – The second part of the clue implies that the item is not wooden.
15 Object to hit dance (4)
BALL – Double definition for the object that is hit in a game of say, snooker, and another word for a dance.
16 Drive slowly, unprepared to break 150 (5)
CRAWL – A three-letter word meaning unprepared inside (to break) the Roman numerals for 150.
17 Pig circles then finally it falls down cold (4)
SNOW – A three-letter word for a pig around (circles) the final letter of then.
18 Very warm, it couldn’t be closer (4,4)
DEAD HEAT – A four letter meaning very as in very easy followed by a four-letter word meaning to warm.
20 Player going second in deficit after a small amount of betting (5)
BLACK – A four-letter word meaning a deficit after the initial letter (a small amount) of betting.
21 Loading screen slow initially, unexpected result of pressing all the keys? (9)
GLISSANDO – An anagram (unexpected) of LOADING S S (the initial letters of screen slow). A minor point but for the anagram indicator to work following the letters to be rearranged it would have to be unexpectedly.
22 Take the bait and broadcast some information (4)
BITE – A homophone (broadcast) of byte (some information).
24 I sped around next to son, in this perhaps (7)
SIDECAR – The I from the clue followed by a five-letter word meaning sped reversed (around) all after (next to) the abbreviation for son.
25 Lying back in Scilly, distinctly peaceful (7)
IDYLLIC – The answer is hidden and reversed (lying back) in the fourth and fifth words of the clue.
1 Naughty lemur not right to make animal cross (4)
MULE – An anagram (naughty) of LEMUR without the abbreviation for right.
2 Politician using speech to support case for tolerance – it’s about time! (8)
TEMPORAL – The abbreviation for a member of parliament and a four-letter word meaning using speech underneath (to support) the outer letters (case for) of tolerance.
3 Farah’s lower in this city (6)
MOSCOW – The first name of the Olympic runner Farah with the S from the ’s in the clue followed by the animal that lows.
4 Concerning fall in America as investment in Venezuelan mutual rising (8)
AUTUMNAL – The answer is hidden (investment in) and reversed (rising) in the eighth and ninth words of the clue.
5 Help 1’s father first… (6)
ASSIST – A three-letter word for the father of the animal at 1d followed by the letters that look like first when written in abbreviated form.
6 … 1’s mother endlessly praying from the heart, she’s a Saint (4)
MARY – A four-letter word for the mother of the animal at 1d without the final letter (endlessly) followed by the central letter (from the heart – it works for me) of praying.
11 Island that New Amsterdam originally transformed? (9)
MANHATTAN – A three-letter name of an island of the coast of Britain followed by an anagram (transformed) of THAN N (new) A (Amsterdam originally).
12 One’s legless from strong drink around noon (5)
SNAKE – A four-letter word for a strong Japanese rice wine around the abbreviation for noon.
14 Notice being hit in the head (5)
CLOCK – Double definition. Interesting – the usage seems valid but I would normally say hit on the head and hit in the face.
16 Board member shames vacant chairperson in motion (8)
CHESSMAN – An anagram (in motion) of SHAMES CN (the outer letters – vacant – of chairperson).
17 Safety feature of rear deck (4,4)
SEAT BELT – A four-letter word meaning the bottom or rear followed by a four-letter word meaning to hit or deck. As pointed out in the comments, there is nothing objectionable about definition of (synonymous with from) wordplay.
19 Hamilton maybe determined making final run (6)
DRIVER – A eight-letter word meaning determined with the last letter changed from N to R (making final run). As pointed out try to avoid repeating wordplay indicators such as final / finally.
20 Look into organisation that’s violent (6)
BLOODY – A two-letter word meaning look inside (into) a four-letter word for an organisation.
21 Bottom of ship almost turns over without the required gravity (4)
GLIB – A five-letter word for the area at the bottom of a shop without the final letter (almost) and reversed (turns over).
23 Pair regularly seen in town inn (4)
TWIN – The odd letter (regularly seen in) of the final two words of the clue.