Luce Cameron doesn’t want to go home, not even when her dying godfather tells her there’s a lost manuscript to be found there. It’s three years since she was one of ‘John Knox’s G Strings’, a band that had a future. Luce isn’t sure what hers is any more, but she persuades theatre technician Ninian Tulloch to go to Dunpark House in her stead. He finds himself travelling in the company of ‘promising’ comedian Eddie Corcoran and on-the-run Rob Ainslie, but none of them expect the undivided attention of relentless Inspector Maurice Macquarie. Caught up in a plot to retrieve smuggled diamonds from Dunpark House, the hapless trio endure life-threatening experiences such as disposing of an inconvenient corpse, rough sleeping and recreational dancing with a ladies cricket team.
While these three are making their frequently interrupted journey to Loch Tay, another narrative unfolds. Archibald Cameron, heir to Dunpark House, finds himself involved in balloon experiments that interest Oliver Corcoran, a double agent anxious to escape both his employers. Real events, such as the naval mutinies of 1797, the Tranent massacre and Loch Tay militia riots, mingle with the fates of Archibald, his friend Tam Linton and Oliver.
Past and present collide when the worst storm in almost two hundred years hits the shores of Loch Tay and threatens to engulf both...
An entertainment disguised as a blackly comic crime thriller with historical outbursts, Playing the Air reminds us we all rewrite our own histories, forget what we ought to remember and ignore our past, yet somehow keep smiling.