Donald S Murray
writer & poet

Donald S Murray – writer & poet


Paul Torday Memorial Prize 2020, awarded for 'As the Women Lay Dreaming'.

HWA Debut Crown 2019, Longlisted for 'As the Women Lay Dreaming'.

The Herald Scottish Culture Awards 2019, Outstanding Literature Award. Shortlisted for 'As the Women Lay Dreaming'.

Authors' Club Best First Novel Award 2019, Shortlisted for 'As the Women Lay Dreaming'

 Walter Scott Prize 2019, 'Academy Recommends List,' awarded for 'As the Women Lay Dreaming'.

Highland Book Prize, 2018. Longlisted for 'As the Women Lay Dreaming'.

Jessie Kesson Fellowship, 2013.

Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship, 2012.

Neil M. Gunn Prize, 2009. Awarded third place for a villanelle.

Callum Macdonald Memorial Award, 2007. Shortlisted for 'Speak To Us Catriona: New Tales and Traditions of The Lews'.

Saltire Society First Book Award, 1997. Shortlisted for 'Special Deliverance: Short Stories from the Western Isles'.



 'He writes with an inherent understanding of Highland culture, language, and way of life.'
The Herald

' of the great lyrical writers of our time.'
Cathy Macdonald

'A haunting, poignant, meticulously researched novel about the 1919 Iolaire ferry disaster and its effect on the local community. An extraordinary piece of storytelling.'
The Authors’ Club

'This powerful, moving and harrowing novel about the Iolaire disaster off the Isle of Lewis explores how a single event can so dramatically impact communities, individuals and, indeed, our very souls.'
The Walter Scott Prize Academy

'Murray is one of my favourite writers in any genre.'
Stephen Moss, The Guardian

'It’s the kind of book you want to read again as soon as you finish it, because you know there is so much that will be revealed on that second reading; the kind of novel which can enrich your life.'
Alan Massie, The Scotsman

'Beautifully and sensitively told, by one of the great lyrical writers of our time.'
Cathy MacDonald

'The Guga Hunters builds into one of those books that prove incontrovertibly the hoary old adage that truth is stranger than fiction.'
Will Self, The Telegraph

'Donald S. Murray is one of the most accomplished and original writers to have emerged from Lewis in modern times, and there is stiff competition.'
Roger Hutchinson, West Highland Free Press

'He writes with an inherent understanding of Highland culture, language, and way of life.'
The Herald.

'Mr Murray is a gregarious and engaging raconteur.'
The Economist

'The story is told with great charm, and tinged with a spirit of loss and yearning.'
Philip Marsden, The Spectator

'This is a splendid book, filled with passion, wit, and wonderful facts.'
Geographical Magazine

'A beautiful book by a gifted writer.'
New Shetlander

'Mesmerising. When I closed this book I was left with the feeling that Donald S. Murray had been paring away layers of centuries of life in Ness for my benefit.'
Jim Crumley, Scots Magazine

'A powerful book…which reveals new layers with every reading.'
Alistair Braidwood, Scots Whay Hae

'Murray is an evocative painter of landscapes and a deeply sympathetic writer.'
Stephanie Cross, Daily Mail

'Triumphant… The writing is breath-taking.'
Lochaber Life, Book of the Month

'Timely, clever, evocative… Murray has said that this novel took him around sixteen years to complete and on the strength of this poignant offering one hopes we will not have to wait so long for his second.'
Shetland Times

'Donald S. Murray is superb in bringing his characters to life and making the incidents they encounter feel utterly real.'
Undiscovered Scotland

'A powerful novel… A poignant exploration of love, loss and survivor’s guilt.'
Nick Rennison, Sunday Times

'A searing poetic meditation on stoicism and loss.'
Mariella Frostrup, BBC Radio 4 Open Book

“A well-written and well-crafted novel from an author at the height of his powers.” The Oban Times

“Murray writes about the people and landscape and way of life of the island with sympathy, deep understanding and humour. His evocation of Lewis is as fine as George Mackay Brown’s was of Orkney; high praise but thoroughly deserved.” Allan Massie, The Scotsman

“In a Veil of Mist is a moving portrait of a place and its people.” The Times

“The setting... is so credibly drawn that the book is almost a ticket to the island.” David Robinson, Books from Scotland 

“A wonderfully evocative book.” Undiscovered Scotland

 (Updated December 7, 2021)


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