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Electric Brae

3.94  ·  Rating Details ·  155 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
At the centre of the novel is the crumbling seastack of the Old Man of Hoy and the consuming relationship between a young artist, Kim, coldly passionate, talented, secretive, and Jimmy, a North Sea roughneck, engineer and climber. It deals with the possibility of friendship between men and women.
Paperback, 320 pages
Published 1992 by Faber and Faber
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Books Set in Scotland
187th out of 630 books — 467 voters
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39th out of 51 books — 18 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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David Kintore
Jul 05, 2014 David Kintore rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful book this is, one of those that lingers with you long after you’ve finished reading it. It’s got a deep melancholy running through it but also lots of passion, love, and light(ish)-hearted comment on Scotland’s east/west divide. Author Andrew Greig has published books on mountaineering, and climbing features prominently in this book, but thankfully not from what Christopher Brookmyre in Be My Enemy termed a ‘because-it’s-there macho bullshit’ perspective. Rather, Greig describes ...more
Sep 17, 2007 Karen rated it liked it
I learnt that Men like crazy chicks and it helps to be a bit mental to create art.
Nov 02, 2009 Abailart rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction

Enjoyable page-turner, entertaining and humorous enough to hold at a distance the shadowy fears and anxieties that cloud around the action. Much of the humour is in the narrator’s self-deprecating Scottish maleness where silence is as virtuous as the bon mot that breaks it. A bit like Rebus, in fact.
Not driven by anything more than the plot of what happens when a group of randomly connected young men and women meet and bond, separate and rebond in various chemical elective affinities. There’s
Valerie Penny
Jul 05, 2014 Valerie Penny rated it liked it
Andrew Greig is a Scottish author and poet who was born in Bannockburn, Scotland on 23 September 1951. He grew up in Anstruther in Fife. He attended The University of Edinburgh where he read Philosophy. Greig is also a former Writing Fellow of Glasgow University. He and his wife, the author Lesley Glaister now have homes in Edinburgh and Orkney.

Electric Brae: A Modern Romance is the only book written by Andrew Grieg that I have read. It was his first novel and was published in 1992. The book was
Lori Anderson
Feb 21, 2012 Lori Anderson rated it really liked it
Recommended to Lori by: Rebecca Anderson
A friend gave me this book to read and for the first 40 pages I was dubious, but it didn't take long to fall in love with it. The author has a way with words, and I kept finding myself pausing to mark passages I particularly liked.

It's hard to describe this book. It's billed as a romance, but it's from the point of view of a man who works on an offshore oil rig. The love of his life is a younger artist who struggles with a dark past and staying out of mental institutions.

The book is also about
Jan 28, 2016 Hannah rated it really liked it
I bought this book because I liked the title so much, and after reading it I still think that's the best thing about it. The characters did feel like real people, and their experiences like life, but I had to read very slowly for some reason, kept putting the book away, and I kept forgetting what had happened a few chapters ago, even things I read just a day ago. But I guess that's just like life, too. I think I want to read more by this author, but not right away.

ps: months later some of the ch
Sep 15, 2014 Judy rated it really liked it
Early novel by an excellent Scottish author. Deeply atmospheric, passionate and moving; people are not always what they seem, relationships complicated, as the story moves through shifts in time. Greig is a poetic writer who cares deeply for his country and his people - he writes vividly about both. This is a good read with insights into the fabric of secular, modern Scottish society: an oil rig engineer, artists, social workers, teachers, rock climbers and boat builders. The setting traverses ...more
Jul 29, 2015 Hugh rated it it was amazing
OK, so this may sound like damnation with faint praise, but this is the best novel I've read about climbing (including Simon Mawer's The Fall which I also enjoyed). I remember picking this up in a warehouse sale purely on the strength of the title and cover, but since then I have read and enjoyed more of Andrew Greig's novels, which were all interesting and well written, but this was the most enjoyable.
Jun 29, 2013 Lorna rated it really liked it
An early one of his but maybe the one I enjoyed most. Very Scottish and good descriptions of landscape and climbing set in ever swapping relationships amongst a quartet of friends in the Thatcher era. Quite a page turner even if not high quality literature I sat and read it all day.
Anna Grady
Dec 13, 2015 Anna Grady rated it really liked it
I found lots to enjoy about this - the descriptions about art and the creative process, mental illness, Scottishness, friendship etc - and the quality of the writing but I found the central female character very irritating which diminished my overall enjoyment of the book.
Joan Fallon
Dec 27, 2013 Joan Fallon rated it really liked it
This is a complicated story of two couples and a love triangle (or triangles). It is beautifully written - you can tell that Andrew Greig is a poet. However if you are not from Scotland you might have some trouble with the dialogue - nevertheless well worth reading.
Sep 18, 2009 Rachel rated it it was ok
Shelves: never-finished
Couldn't make this one out either. Interesting writing, but not suiting my mood. Have read later books by this author (That Summer)and really enjoyed them. One to return to maybe?
Irving Munro
Sep 28, 2015 Irving Munro rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. The characters were great and the relationship development I very much enjoyed. Growing up in Scotland I could relate.
Ros Lawson
Jan 10, 2015 Ros Lawson rated it did not like it
Only managed 40 pages & gave up as I found this too hard to read. I think there's probably a good story in there but it wasn't for me.
Jane Dickie
Jun 02, 2013 Jane Dickie rated it it was amazing
This is one of my fav books ever,love Andrew Greigs writing, set in Scotland and involving the hills and mountains and the ups and downs of relationships.A right good read.
Christine Cather
Feb 03, 2010 Christine Cather rated it really liked it
Sad, real, evocative stories from my era, late '70's Glesca.

True grit.A bit like a Scottish lament,- the whole book like a long song, like a life.
Catf rated it it was amazing
Jan 07, 2013
Carol rated it really liked it
Jul 20, 2015
Ros Docherty
Ros Docherty rated it it was amazing
Feb 23, 2015
Per Bressendorff
Per Bressendorff rated it it was amazing
Feb 18, 2012
Stuart Meikle
Stuart Meikle rated it liked it
Jan 08, 2013
Marketa rated it really liked it
May 29, 2012
Frances Wright
Frances Wright rated it it was amazing
Jun 28, 2013
Malena rated it it was amazing
Jul 23, 2013
Ruth rated it really liked it
Jun 18, 2012
Liz rated it it was amazing
Feb 23, 2008
Doug Mackay
Doug Mackay rated it it was amazing
Jun 23, 2014
Keithpwalker rated it it was amazing
May 30, 2013
Tracy rated it it was ok
Jul 17, 2014
helen rated it really liked it
Sep 05, 2007
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