A Jarful of Angels
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An evocative literary thriller set in a remote Welsh village. Thirty years ago, in a remote Welsh village, Iffy, Bessie, Fatty and Billy formed a remarkable friendship and enjoyed an impoverished yet magical childhood. That winter they found a skull with its front teeth missing, that summer they experienced a plague of frogs, crept into a garden full of strange statutes, and discovered just what mad Carty Annie had been collecting so secretly in those jars of hers. But at the end of that long, hot summer of 1963, one of them disappeared...
Over thirty years later, retired detective Will Sloane, is compelled to return to that strange Welsh town of secrets and lunatics to try to solve the case of the missing child. But before he can finally discover the truth about what happened, he finds himself involved in a number of interlocking mysteries.
funny bit, Iffy. I don’t think anyone did see them, only us’ ‘I was worried it was because we drank the holy water. That God was paying us back’ ‘No. He wouldn’t send frogs would he? I mean it’d be a lightning bolt or leprosy or something’ Iffy shivered. ‘I think it was like a sign’ ‘What for?’ ‘To warn us.’ ‘What about?’ ‘Like to be on our guard. Remember what Bridgie said about there being secrets in our town?’ Iffy nodded. ‘Well there are’ ‘Are
his eyes. Fat, plopping tears that came without any noise. Iffy put her arm around his heaving shoulders and felt his bones shaking under his skin. Bessie rolled her eyes at the two of them. ‘Haisht Billy, it’ll be all right.’ Muffled noises came from the pipe. It was someone come to get them. ‘Bugger off will you!’ ‘Ow!’ ‘Get off’ Fatty’s voice. He was alive! But someone was after him. He was being chased! Bessie squealed and ran deeper
on the hump-backed bridge. The sun was dipping behind Carmel chapel and the windows were lit with an eerie orange red glow. An early moon rose over Blagdon’s Tump and somewhere on a hill farm a dog began to bark. He was always drawn back to the bridge. He looked down again at the spot where the boy’s clothes had been found. In the old photograph taken outside The Limp, they were black and white... but Will still remembered the colours vividly. The stained khaki shorts...the faded blue of
done in.’ ‘Perhaps he was grieving for his mam.’ said Will. ‘Oh I don’t think so! She was always drunk about the place. I think he was afraid of being put with the nuns, they’d have made him wash!’ The front door opened and Melvyn came into the room. ‘Talking about that Bevan lad? I know he’s dead and you shouldn’t speak ill, but I couldn’t stand him. Cocky little get he was!’ ‘Tea Melvyn?’ ‘Please. Always up to something he was...they reckon it was him who set fire to Dai
teeth in the rattle. ‘Terrible it was’ She could hardly breathe. ‘What was terrible?’ ‘As I was saying. All hell up there was. And ruined his vest into the bargain’ ‘Winnie what the hell are you going on about?’ ‘Haven’t you heard gel? Someone set fire to Dai Full Pelt last night’ Iffy’s heart punched at her ribs. Bomp. Bomp. Bomp. ‘Ay, set fire to him! Lucky not to have killed him mun’ ‘Who done that then?’ ‘They don’t know. No one saw nothing.’