In My Own Time

11th November 2011 at 00:00
Bruce Robertson, Education policy consultant


I have read all of John Le Carre's novels and find him a compelling author who has moved with the times. Scotland has some excellent crime writers at present and I make a beeline for them in bookshops; most recently Peter May's The Blackhouse was a great read. I would recommend that every Scot read No Great Mischief by Alistair Macleod, a wonderful Canadian author.


Most forms of music appeal, but I am especially fond of some of the young traditional Scottish musicians who have appeared as part of the renaissance of this genre. Ewan Robertson, Mairearad Green and Iona Marshall (pictured below) are a few whose work I like. An annual pilgrimage to Celtic Connections is such a brilliant start to the year. When in the car of an early evening I like listening to Bryan Burnett on Radio Scotland, whose show helps the A9 seem almost bearable.


The sport channels are never far away from me - and the quality of live broadcasts is just superb. There are some great thrillers on the telly and I am in mourning over the last ever episode of Spooks. Just as I detest reality TV, I so admire the natural history programmes that are available. The iPlayer is a great invention and I am finding the new series of Still Game very funny, but I do often refer back to Sky Gold for some of the classic comedy shows of the 1970s and 80s.


I could watch some of the film classics again and again: Casablanca, Chariots of Fire, and The Lord of the Rings series. And I must see The Adventures of Tintin and the new version of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy before too long.

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