Stromness Harbour in Orkney with a fishing boat leaving harbour in winter
Hamnavoe, aka Stromness, Orkney

The Eye of the Hurricane is set in Hamnavoe (the Norse name for Brown’s hometown of Stromness) in Orkney. The community is small and we see characters that support their neighbours (Miriam) but we also see a closed community in which Barclay is an outsider.

Though the story does not directly concern the agricultural cycle as some others do, we still see the setting as a place that runs and relies on that cycle. This is clear when Barclay writes:

I had come to live, then, among simple uncomplicated people. I worked to the easy regular rhythms of fishermen and crofters.

Although Barclay is a writer, he recognises the cycle of fishing and farming work extends to the entire island.