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Whisky Galore (Vintage Classics) Paperback – 4 Nov 2004

4.5 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Classics; New Ed edition (4 Nov. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099453541
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099453543
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.8 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 393,654 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Wartime food rationing is bad enough, but when the whisky supplies run out on the Hebridean islands of Great and Little Todday, nothing seems to go right. Then the fifty-thousand-bottle cargo of the shipwrecked S. S. Cabinet Minister brings salvation - in its most giddily intoxicating form.

Book Description

'Love makes the world go round? Not at all. Whisky makes it go round twice as fast.'

The hilarious story of wartime bootlegging in the Scottish islands.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is one of my favourite books ever written.
It was made into a black and white film many years ago and is based on the true story of a cargo ship full of whisky running aground off the coast of a Scottish island during the war, when whisky was impossible to get hold of. You can guess the rest! The Scottish characters are excellently observed and you can almost smell the heather as the escapades of the islanders are brought to life on the page. Whimsical, warm and funny, this is a real feel-good book that can be read again and again. A true classic.
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Format: Paperback
This is a an interplay between the hard dry times of two Scottish Islands when they run out of the "water of life", the glory of finding an unlimited source of it and the hardships facing a WW2 romance.The friendly humour brings me back time and time again -I've a copy printed in 1951 and it's just as a good read now as then. One of the most "five star" books ever written.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Beautifully written observation of Island life, the resilience of the people and the circumstances of the time. Similar in places but also unlike the film in many regards this book is gentle, humorous, heart warming and inspiring. If like me you've watched the Ealing comedy a dozen times and love it, you'll love this book. The film had a few artistic additions and scenes unfamiliar if you've already read the book, but non the less a joy to watch.
The book however while familiar to the film fan has so much more depth, passion of place and gentle humour. The country is at war, times are hard and priorities lie in different places for different people and yet there's a community that comes together for the greater good. The characters are wonderfully portrayed and developed as their everyday lives unfold and are totally believable; especially humorous is the late arrival of Mrs Odd a character who, apart from the name, strangely reminded me of a gentler Nanny Ogg for those who are familiar with Terry Pratchett's Disc world. The setting is wonderfully related and really captures the remote beauty of the western Isles while the gentle plot meanders between three of life's great passions; Love, Belonging and Whisky. Best read in Autumn I would suggest after a lovely walk and then curled up with a large dram in front of an open fire. An absolute classic, loved it.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A beautifully observed observation of the travails of living on a remote Hebridean island during wartime and the resulting terrible Whisky drought. A true delight particularly for anyone who has visited this beautiful part of the world.
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Format: Paperback
The wrecking of a ship carrying hundreds of bottles of whisky on a remote Scottish island is the main plot idea for WG. This event, however, never overshadows the human element of the story that is Mackenzie�s gift for bringing people to life in a humorous and realistic way. The whisky in this novel has much the same effect of the chocolate in Harris�s Chocolat for bringing a community together but is far more a successful and believable attempt.
WG charts war time bleakness, social relations and a love for whisky. It is Mackenzie�s concentration on people�s relationship with whisky that makes this novel truly unique. Mackenzie�s wit lightens proceedings and keeps you turning pages. Despite this, though, I could never find myself really connecting to the characters portrayed in WG- perhaps this would be more a book for the middle-aged and older reader who would have more sympathy for the individuals that populate the novel. Having said that WG is a sparky, sometimes rowdy, knock about of a novel that still has time to have its say on issues of deprivation and social interaction.
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Format: Paperback
This book from which the famous film was taken, is well worth a read in it's own right. It is different from the film in a number of ways, there are two islands not one and unlike the film there are Catholics as well as Calvinists on the island. Also the girl courted by George Campbell (played by Gordon Jackson in the film) is not the sister of the girl courted by the English soldier.
If you enjoyed film, which I believe is a masterpiece, then read the book for a more complex and detailed, but just as funny, version of the same story.
There are also a number of lesser known books in MacKenzie's Highlands series, such as Rockets Galore, The Rival Monster and the Monarch of the Glenn, which has nothing to do with the TV series except that it is set in the Highlands and has the same title. Most are out of print but all are worth the efford to find and read.
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Format: Paperback
This has to be one of the funniest books ever. The characters are so well drawn and believable, from the stern Mrs Campbell who doesn't want her son George to marry, the wily Joseph Macroon and the endearing Englishwoman Mrs Odd, not to mention the pompous Captain Waggett. And when the whisky ship runs aground on the rocks and is plundered by the local population, a kind of fever takes over the two islands - and beyond - from which even the military and government officials are not immune. Great stuff.

The Miracle Man
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is really nice to come to a book written this century but not in this modern era and find yourself smiling at the humour. Whisky Galore is a lovely little book, which enjoys highlighting developing relationships and how innovative people can be (especially when times are desparate). A must read and a classic.
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