I Am An Island, by Tamsin Calidas (Doubleday 2020)

Neil's picture

In this somewhat contentious book, the author and her husband move from high flying jobs in London to a remote, unnamed island in the Scottish Hebrides, buy a croft, and attempt to live an idyllic life. Nothing goes to plan, her marriage breaks down, she fails to make connections with the hostile locals, but is eventually redeemed through ocean swimming and nature. It wasn't well received in Scotland, where the island concerned was quickly identified, and the actions of the locals she described in the book were denied, and there was a minor controversy. Having read it, she does come across as a bit self absorbed, and while I hesitate to say it, seems to almost invite some of the hostility directed towards her. While atmospheric in parts, it's also a bit overwritten and overwrought.