For the avoidance of doubt, I thrill to contemporary and recent Scottish writing. Alasdair Gray, AL Kennedy, Irvine Welsh. Ian Rankin, Iain Banks (sans M!), Janice Galloway. Tom Devine, TC Smout, Tom Nairn. Liz Lochhead, Don Paterson, Robert Crawford. Neil Gunn, Robin Jenkins, Alexander Trocchi... enough, Brian, enough.
Yet I cannot see past the trio listed above for the works which have enthused me most. It is fashionable to decry Scott: a fashion I deplore. His mastery of language, narrative and history is unsurpassed, never more so than in The Heart of Midlothian.
Sunset Song by Lewis Grassic Gibbon I include for its enormous elegaic power – in addition, frankly, to its evocation of my native North-east. The lyrical beauty, the healthy scepticism, the Scots tongue. These are my three.
Brian Taylor's favourite Scottish Books
- Add to BasketThe Private Memoirs And Confessions Of A Justified Sinner - - Paperback
Set in early 18th century Scotland, this novel recounts the corruption of a boy of strict Calvinist upbringing by a mysterious stranger under whose influence he commits a series of murders. Could this stranger be a figment of the imagination, or the devil himself?
- Add to BasketSunset Song - - Paperback
Divided between her love of the land and the harshness of farming life, Chris Guthrie finally chooses to stay in the rural community of her childhood. But the First World War and the subsequent economic changes have a deep impact on her life. 'Sunset Song' was voted the Best Scottish Book of All Time.
Books written by Brian Taylor
- Add to BasketThe Road To The Scottish Parliament - Paperback
First published in 1999, this revised and updated guide to the establishment of Scotland's Parliament follows the road to devolution - with fresh detail of the obstacles which stood in the way. The author offers an analysis of the background to this monumental political change.