The Stolen Voice

Written by Pat McIntosh
Review by Marilyn Sherlock

The Sidhean (Sheean) is a local hill where the Good Neighbours dwell, so when 12-year-old David Drummond, a chorister, vanished from that very spot and returned thirty years later, seemingly not a day older, it was perfectly natural to believe that the Good Neighbours had had a hand in it. Within the last year more singers disappeared, the last of them being George Brown, Secretary to the Bishop of Dunkeld, who had been present when Ambassadors had been received from England in the summer. Is someone simply poaching good singers or are there darker deeds afoot? This is just what Gil Cunningham has been sent by the Archbishop, Robert Blacader, to find out.

This book gets away from Glasgow and the environs of the university and up into the Highlands around Perth. The story moves along well and the characterisation is as good as ever, but a glossary to explain the Gaelic and Scots words used would be useful. The author does give a web site to find a dictionary of the Scots language but, in my opinion, to have to do this in the middle of the story is not the best of ideas.