Synopsis: Religion is supposed to shield children from the evil of the world … One Sunday nine-year-old Jess Hall watches in horror as his autistic brother is smothered during a healing service in the mountains of North Carolina. Wiley Cash uses this haunting image – inspired by a horrific true event – to spin us into a spellbinding, heartbreaking story about cruelty and innocence, and the failure of faith and family to protect a child. This is a novel thick with stories and characters connected by faith, infidelity, and a sense of hope that is both tragic and unforgettable.
The Judges said: “An evocative, absorbing slice of Americana, this well-constructed Southern-gothic tale has dark touches of Faulkner, and highlights the dangers of all-powerful religious belief and fervour.”
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