Praise for As the Women Lay Dreaming:

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

'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.'

Alan Massie, The Scotsman

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Donald S Murray took his “roadshow” to Orkney Library on Thursday October 10th.

There was a good turn-out at the event in Junction Road, Kirkwall.

There is continued deep interest in what happened in the small hours of January 1st, 1919, when the cruellest twist of fate changed the lives of an entire community.

Donald’s novel, As the Women Lay Dreaming, explores how a single event can so dramatically impact communities, individuals and, indeed, our very souls.  It’s main character Tormod Morrison was there that terrible night on board HMY Iolaire when it smashed into rocks and sank, killing some 201 servicemen on the very last leg of their long journey home from war.


In Kirkwall, Donald notes that he also received Orkney fudge, cheese, oatmeal biscuits and a small bottle of Highland Park whisky.

“My thanks to Karen, Steven (who designed the poster) and the rest of the team. I felt very welcome. My thanks too to Rhos Mhairi and Dave for their hospitality.

On Facebook, Fran Flett Hollinrake said: “Thank you to Donald for coming to Orkney and telling us about As the Women Lay Dreaming. It’s a very poetic, moving novel - highly recommended!”


A young filmmaker based on the Isle of Lewis will be producing the movie based on The Women Lay Dreaming, the acclaimed new novel by Lewis writer Donald S Murray exploring how generations of the same family were affected by the legacy of the tragedy, which struck when a naval yacht crashed into rocks near Stornoway in the early hours of New Year’s Day, 1919.

The project, which has won the backing of a new talent project to find “Scotland’s filmmakers of the future” being funded by the BBC and Channel 4, is being undertaken by John Murdo MacAulay, aged 25.

The Scotsman newspaper reports that:

February 2019 found Donald S Murray at the Pitlochry Festival Theatre as part of the Winter Words Festival.

He appeared with Robin A Crawford, author of Into The Peatlands on February 15th (They are pictured below) 

In his book Robin A. Crawford explores the peatlands of Lewis. He explains how they have come to be and also considers how peat has been used for millennia, principally as a fuel but also, amongst other things, as a key element in the whisky-making process.

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