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The Ultimate Burns Supper Book: A Practical (But Irreverent) Guide to Scotland's Greatest Celebration [Paperback]

Clark McGinn
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 Jan 2007
Clark McGinn, one of the foremost Burns Supper speakers in the world, presents the "Ultimate Guide to the Burns Supper", containing all the information you need to enjoy a Supper, whether as host, speaker or guest. It includes: complete run through of what to expect on the night, with a list of courses and speeches; what to wear; how to prepare and present speeches; common Burns Supper questions (and their answers!); Burns' greatest poems, including a full English verse translation of the "Address to a Haggis"; and answers to your worries about eating haggis and drinking whisky. "Auld Scotland wants nae skinking ware, That jaups in luggies; But if ye wish her gratfu' prayer, Gie her a Haggis! 'Address to a Haggis,' " - Robert Burns. With detailed descriptions and instructions by a recognised and widely credited Burns supper speaker, this is a guide to a widespread and popular social event that has been practiced for 200 years. It is also an informal, light hearted introduction to an event that non Scots might otherwise find confusing or intimidating.

Product details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Luath Press Ltd (1 Jan 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1905222602
  • ISBN-13: 978-1905222605
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 13.8 x 17.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 986,605 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Clark is well known as a speaker and writer on Robert Burns (speaking at a dozen Burns Suppers across the world every year) but his latest book, Out Of Pocket is the fruit of his 25 years banking career in London and New York. As discussed on the Today programme, this approachable study of banking crisis and financial folly over the centuries explains how today's crunch has happened before and, warns that,without major changes, it will happen again in the future.
He writes for The Scotsman, Sunday Herald and other newspapers and his speeches have been seen on TV in the UK and abroad.

Product Description


'This is the best, the clearest, the sharpest, the only guide you will ever need.' From the Foreword by Professor Murray Pittock

About the Author

Clark McGinn was born in Ayr and has been the speaker at Burns Suppers for thirty years. He has led the revelry at Suppers across Britain, Europe and the States, usually with a dram of whisky in hand. While at Glasgow University he founded the World Student Debating Competition and passed enough exams to become a banker, where his skills at arguing came in handy. His speeches have been shown on TV in Britain, America, Canada and Australia.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars All you need to plan a Burns Supper 26 Jan 2009
By William Cohen VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Every year I get asked to write some Burns Night speeches, and until this year I passed because I wasn't at all familiar with the ritual. This year I agreed to do one, and I invested in Clark McGinn's book to get me through it. His advice is practical, he's written it in a friendly and accessible style, and his public speaking advice is spot on. Next year I'll be able to organise my own supper!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The ultimate review 28 Sep 2010
This modern look at this old tradition is as packed full of quirky facts as the haggis itself - enjoyable as a practical guide to arranging Burns night and as a good read about this Scottish tradition. Lots of fun, just like a good Burns Supper!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Informative and fun to read 12 Mar 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Definitive Burns Night Supper reference. Good advice and ideas to keep to tradition and yet tailor to the type of party size and guest composition.
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Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you have been invited to speak, attend or help organise a Burns Supper you should read this book.

I have attended several Burns Suppers in the past but bought it this year as I was asked to help organise one. It really is indispensable.

As well as explaining the practicalities - such as how to make a haggis - or, perhaps more accurately, why you should not make a haggis but buy one - or which side your sporran should be worn on - it also teaches you a lot about Robert Burns and explains his key poems.

So worth buying if you just want to find out more about Burns the man as well.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very informative guide and companion. 1 Jun 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I used this to help me run my last Burns night. As it says on the back cover; 'Everything you need to enjoy or arrange a Burns Supper - just add food, drink and friends'. It lays out the evening, gives you your duties as a host, has graces and poems, translations and it even provides the Bill o' Fare and a whisky guide. Even if not for a traditional Burns Night, it has themes for Hogmanay and St Andrew's Night. My night was made so much easier and was enjoyed by all, even those who can't remember how they got home. Thank you Clark McGinn.
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