Toughie No 2957 by Dada
Hints and tips by StephenL
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BD Rating – Difficulty ** – Enjoyment ***
Hello everyone. Dada kicks off the Toughie week with a fun puzzle which just about hits the Tuesday spot. Very enjoyable.
Please leave a comment telling us what you thought.
9a Animal, monk with two heads? (5)
LLAMA: The spiritual leader of the Tibetan people with the initial letter repeated (two heads)
10a Back-pedalling, I turn into runner, say — smash! (9)
PULVERISE: Insert a reversal of I from the clue plus an abbreviated turn or rotation into the seed of a legume (runner bean?)
11a Saint feeding lowlife a Mexican dish (7)
TOSTADA: Insert (feeding) the abbreviation for SainT into a type of frog or amphibian, which could be a derogatory description of a person. Append the A from the clue
12a Put phone down, no longer engaged? (4,3)
RING OFF: The action of putting the phone down could whimsically refer to someone “no longer engaged” in a romantic sense, missing a finger adornment.
13a Greek character in the morning issue, read about (5)
GAMMA: Start with the Latin abbreviation for “before noon” and add an abbreviated publication or issue. Reverse the result.
14a Put up with song, north European (9)
HUNGARIAN: A synonym of put up (as one might a picture), a song and the abbreviation for Northern
16a Caterer bakes flan, virtually liquid, food served in bowl (9,6)
BREAKFAST CEREAL: Anagram (liquid) of all but the last letter (virtually) of first three words
19a Accurate reading misinterpreted then, tour crossing river (4,5)
TRUE NORTH: Anagram (misinterpreted) of the following two words around the abbreviation for River
21a Upset, one shade seen when angry about king (5)
IRKED: Start with the letter that represents the number one. Add a colour one may go when angry and place it around the abbreviation for King.
23a With a little money invested, go for the green stuff! (3,4)
PEA SOUP: Insert A plus an old French coin into a synonym of go in the sense of energy or liveliness.
25a Title singer Jack rejected (7)
BARONET: Reverse (rejected) a male singer and the abbreviation for Able Seaman (jack)
27a This person articulated key revelation (3-6)
EYE OPENER: A homophone (articulated) of a pronoun the setter would use to refer to himself and a description of the function of a key.
28a Walk in Montmartre a delight (5)
TREAD: Hidden (in) in the clue.
1d Accommodation sounding dreadful? (4)
FLAT: Double definition I guess, the least obvious being a sound without tone.
2d Reportedly fine coach (6)
HANSOM: Homophone (reportedly) of a synonym of fine in the sense of good looking
3d Unforeseen trouble with nutty brood? (6,4)
BANANA SKIN: If you split the solution 7,3 you’ll see the wordplay, synonyms of nutty and brood in the sense of family.
4d Bathe in publicity? (6)
SPLASH: Easier to solve than explain. A kind of cryptic or loose double definition, one a verb, the other a noun.
5d Tube blown when blood banks cool (8)
CLARINET: Place an informal word for blood (often used by over-excited rugby commentators) around (banks) a synonym of cool in the sense of hip. This song features one.
6d Wicked show (4)
MEAN: Double definition, one an adjective the other a verb in the sense of convey or denote.
7d Drug: figure popping one on bed (8)
NICOTINE: Place a figure or number around (popping I guess) the letter representing one and a child’s bed.
8d Unfamiliar milk tooth, possibly, came first (10)
NEWFANGLED: If you split the solution 3,4,3 you’ll see the wordplay. Very funny
13d Hunk’s hat is sweet (10)
GOBSTOPPER: A synonym of hunk in the sense of clump or dollop, the possessive S and a generic term for a hat
15d Improve a lecture about male priest (10)
AMELIORATE: A from the clue, and a synonym of lecture as a verb placed around the abbreviation for Male and crosswordland’s favourite priest.
17d Scholarly cadet due for training (8)
EDUCATED: Anagram (for training) of the preceding two words.
18d Drug in operation working without oxygen (8)
ATROPINE: Anagram (working) of oPERATION (without oxygen)
20d Oz city where drink is available when it’s boiling outside (6)
HOBART: Place a synonym of boiling around a place where one can get a drink to give a very fine city on the island of Tasmania
22d Youngsters in Berlin or closer to Nice? (6)
KINDER: The German word for children is also a comparative adjective which could mean closer to nice. Ignore the false capitalisation.
24d Reel cut up — oh dear! (4)
OOPS: A synonym of reel has its last letter removed and the result is reversed (up in a down clue)
26d Considerable spruce (4)
TIDY: Another double definition, the less obvious one referring to an amount (especially money).
My winners are 12a plus 8&20d. Which ones floated your dinghy?