Well, after that lovely diversion into interviewing and semiotics, back to some of the books which have been languishing on the stacks! I’ve regularly lamented the bad influences of other Book Bloggers and Tweeters on my TBR, which is an ever-increasing mountain at the moment. And I can pinpoint exactly who’s reponsible for the subject of this post – it was Lizzy at Lizzy’s Literary Life, who featured the book and made it look and sound so lovely that I just had to have a copy! 😀

The book in question is “Aspects of Edinburgh“, a slim collection of verse and illustrations which is the result of the joint work of Stewart Conn and John Knight. Conn was Edinburgh’s inaugural makar (or laureate); Knight has worked as an architect with Historic Scotland; and both men combine their talents here to produce a book which paints an absolutely beautiful portrait of the city of my birth.

Regular readers will know of my love for Edinburgh; we left when I was six and I had an emotional revisit with my mother three years ago; and the place does of course lodge deeply in my heart. So this book was really made for me! Conn’s verse explores the Old and New Towns, specific streets and areas, the weather, the history and the atmosphere of the city. Ranging in style from more formal verse to prose-like pieces, the poetry has an immediacy I loved, capturing the feel of the city way up in the far north-east.

And the poems are punctuated with wonderful drawings by Knight which really encapsulate Edinburgh. Most of these are black and white, but suddenly you’ll turn a page and come across a lovely colour illustration – beautiful!

17 Heriot Row, where RLS grew up – I have stood outside that very building in awe! 😀

Did I have particular favourites? Well, I often find it hard to pick out poems I liked best if I’ve responded to a whole collection! However, I loved “Footage of RLS” with its quirky take on Robert Louis Stevenson; “Ice Cool” was a brilliant three-verse work with only a single full stop; and “From Arthur’s Seat” wonderfully conjured up an impression of the skyline of the great city.

So thank you, Lizzy, for bringing this lovely book to my attention. I lost myself in it happily, revisiting Edinburgh in my head (which is all I can do at the moment until restrictions are lifted…) “Aspects of Edinburgh” is a joy for anyone who loves the city – and perhaps a nice introduction and enticement to visit for those of you who don’t… ;D

(NB Apart from the title of this post I’ve not quoted from any of the poems because I think the book should be read as a whole, each poem in its entirety reflecting on a particular aspect of the city!)