Giovanni – Big Dave's Crossword Blog

Toughie 2359

Toughie No 2359 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment **

Happy New Year to one and all.

It was with some trepidation that I offered to swap Toughies with Gazza, and I was right. This is yet another back-page puzzle ramped up to Toughie level by the inclusion of a scattering of obscurities. Continue reading “Toughie 2359”

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Toughie 2340

Toughie No 2340 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment **

There’s nothing too exciting in this puzzle and Giovanni has provided, as usual, a couple of words that I didn’t know. I did notice, when writing the hints, that we have to do quite a lot of deleting single letters.… Continue reading

Toughie 2331

Toughie No 2331 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment **

I guess there are no rules as to what distinguishes a Toughie from a back-page puzzle, but Giovanni seems to think that it means plumbing the depths of the BRB for obscure words and meanings. As far as I am concerned this makes for a very dull puzzle, others may have a different opinion. Continue reading “Toughie 2331”

Toughie 2304

Toughie No 2304 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **/***Enjoyment **

Not a lot of laughs today – Giovanni has given us mostly pretty straightforward clues but with a couple of obscure terms thrown in to ensure that we get full value from our copies of Chambers.… Continue reading

Toughie 2284

Toughie No 2284 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment **/***

It wouldn’t be a Giovanni Toughie if it didn’t have a few terms I didn’t know but the only one which gave me any significant problems was 5d where I was thrown by the unusual spelling.… Continue reading

Toughie 2264

Toughie No 2264 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment ***

I made hard work of this one but I did enjoy the exercise (and only the sheaves of wheat were a totally new word for me). Thanks to Giovanni.… Continue reading

Toughie 2247

Toughie No 2247 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Big Dave

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment **

No surprises here – you know what you are going to get with a Giovanni Toughie. A pretty average puzzle in which the difficulty is ramped up by the inclusion of a couple of words that are not in the average solver’s vocabulary – in my case 23a and 4d.… Continue reading

Toughie 2232

Toughie No 2232 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

I found this fairly gentle with only two answers that I didn’t know (the African money and the Indian bed) and in both cases the wordplay and the checkers made the solving straightforward with just a resort to Chambers required to confirm that I’d got the answers right.… Continue reading

Toughie 2212

Toughie No 2212 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty ****Enjoyment **

I found this to be something of a slog requiring lots of checking – Google had to put in an extra shift. Thanks Giovanni but, as I may have mentioned once or twice before, I do prefer Toughies which rely on clever wordplay rather than obscure vocabulary.… Continue reading

Toughie 2196

Toughie No 2196 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Gazza

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

There’s nothing to scare the nags here and I thought that most of the clues could have appeared in one of Giovanni’s Friday back-pagers. There are two words I didn’t know (the 5d plant and the 6d rebound) but both can be got easily enough from the wordplay and the checkers.… Continue reading