Sunday, December 28, 2014

Under the weather (Sunday brunch: December 28, 2014)

I’m down with a cold today: let’s get straight to the links.

Māyā sends us a couple of Boxing Day gifts from New Zealand: one with a Dr. Who theme.  She also posted another cryptic earlier in the week.  From the Aussie side of the Tasman (Sydney, to be precise) comes the weekly Stickler.

North of the border, Hex make a topical reference in their National Post cryptic.   There’s also the weekly Globe and Mail puzzle.  

Hex also set a variety cryptic for the Wall Street Journal, continuing editor Mike Shenk’s trend towards slightly harder puzzles.  The puzzle is called Twenty-Six Out, since one letter of the alphabet has been taken away from  each row and column.  Solution and hints are posted elsewhere on the blog.  And the regular Hex acrostic is in the New York Times: Deb Amlen at Wordplay (spoiler warning) enjoyed the new words in it.

You might want to get ready for the new year by signing up for one of the subscription puzzle series My favorite is the biweekly Rows Garden by Andrew Ries.  He’s thoughtful enough to set each puzzle up with four levels of difficulty (withholding enumerations and cluing the blooms in random order).

I usually leave the straight crosswords to other bloggers, but I’ll make an exception for this puzzle by Andy Kravis with audio clues.  

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