The Stillman

By Tom McCulloch

Format: Paperback

Jim Drever is a man apart, his closest relationship with the machinery he monitors in the distillery where he's worked for twenty years. He treats everything else with bleakly humorous contempt.

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Sandstone Press Ltd

Sandstone Press was established in 2002 based on the firm belief that an international publishing house could be based in the Highlands of Scotland. We publish fiction and non-fiction books and ebooks. The company is characterised by high editorial and design standards, internationalism, and a strong engagement with the contemporary world using modern methods. Sandstone Press books have won or been shortlisted for many literary prizes including the Man Booker, Commonwealth, Arthur C Clarke, Creative Scotland, Green Carnation, Saltire Society, Petrona, Bill Rollinson Prize for Landscape and Tradition, Boardman Tasker, Not the Booker, and Desmond Elliott Awards.

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Jim Drever is a man apart, his closest relationship with the machinery he monitors in the distillery where he's worked for twenty years. He treats everything else with bleakly humorous contempt: his fading marriage, the increasingly bizarre behaviour of his teenage son; his daughter's impending wedding. He can deal with all that in his own way. It's the emails from Cuba, made up of letters from his dead mother, that threaten to bring down Jim's ordered world.

Additional Information

Additional Information

Format Paperback
Imprint Sandstone Press Ltd
Publication Date 17 Apr 2014
ISBN 9781908737670
Number of Pages 286

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'"How do the pieces of a life fit together?' This is the key question that protagonist Jim Drever has to answer as he negotiates family dysfunction, workplace rivalries and emotional journeys. In The Stillman Tom McCulloch chronicles lives veering between sourness and cynicism, energy and optimism, and does so with acute observation and wickedly black humour.' James Robertson, author of The Professor of Desire, And the Land Lay Still, The Testament of Gideon Mack, etc

McCulloch offers a convincing insight into what it is to be Scottish - indeed what it is to be a human being - while building a thoroughly absorbing story which flits effortlessly between the Highlands and Cuba. Often poetic and with generous dashes of black humour, The Stillman builds satisfyingly towards an ending that keeps you guessing until the last page.

This is a funny, emotional work . . .  with gallows humour undercutting the worst of Jim's mistakes and plenty of quotable passages on the damage life does to us, The Stillman is well worth reading.

The mystery turns into a powerful depiction of a man struggling to come to terms with his past and to live in his present.

It is testament to McCulloch's remarkable craft that despite Jim's flaws, the reader keeps engaged with him right until the very end.

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