The dandelion and its sinister implications

The Queen of Scots Mystery
The new cover for ‘The Queen of Scots Mystery’

In case anyone wonders why I’ve chosen to put a dandelion on the front cover of my latest Pitkirtly mystery, here is the story.

I recently discovered while assisting with our production of the play ‘Mary, Queen of Scots got her head chopped off’ (Liz Lochhead) that there is a macabre children’s game associated with Mary which consists of flicking the petals off a dandelion. Right at the end of the play one of the characters pings the whole head off a dandelion to represent the execution.

After some experiments during rehearsal, we discarded the idea of using an actual dandelion for this as dandelions tend to go very droopy very quickly once they’ve been picked and the heads don’t ping very effectively. We used a small chrysanthemum as a substitute.

The dandelion on the cover was photographed by the late Ian Ogilvy Morrison.

No dandelions were harmed during the writing of this novel. Now that I have the cover and blurb ready, I hope to publish ‘The Queen of Scots Mystery’ on Amazon and elsewhere during this coming week.

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