Alan Connor writes twice weekly about crosswords for the Guardian. He has contributed pieces about language for the BBC and the Guardian and works in radio and television, writing with Charlie Brooker and Sue Perkins. His most recent writing was A Young Doctor's Notebook, a TV adaptation of Mikhail Bulgakov stories starring Daniel Radcliffe and Jon Hamm.
Alan Connor's charming, fascinating history . . . is as elegantly
sprinkled with surprising gems as the most satisfying crossword . .
. thoroughly, consistently entertaining . . . In a single,
gloriously decipherable chapter he lays out with perfect clarity
the entire range of rules and devices through which cryptic clues
work their magic * Sunday Times *
It is witty, charming, encyclopaedic and highly readable - and it can be read in any order. Take a chapter or a paragraph, a puzzle or a clue. In each the reader will find something to intrigue and delight. * Spectator *
Two Girls is a lovingly crafted little book, from the table of contents - where chapter titles are hidden in a crossword designed by the great Araucaria - to the index, which skips from "I give up, see frustration" via "primness in American crosswords", to finish with "zookeepers, beleaguered". * The Times *
A lovingly crafted little book . . . Connor's wry, good-natured tone and his commitment to the serious business of play make him the perfect guide to a great pastime as it approaches its 100th birthday * Daily Telegraph *
Connor writes with great flair . . . it is nice to dip in and out of his entertaining essays * Church Times *
An ideal stocking filler * Metro *
The brilliant new book on crosswords that delivers fun galore whether you're a doer or a duffer * Mail on Sunday *
There is something to entertain even the most infrequent dabbler * Financial Times *