Death Of An Angel
Today I am pleased to be able to participate in the blog tour for Death of An Angel by Derek Farrell My thanks go to damppebbles blog tours.
About the Book
A woman is found dead in a London street - the evidence suggests she plummeted to her death from a nearby tower block – but did she fall or was she pushed? And why does she have Danny Bird’s name written on the back of her hand?
So begins this 4th magnificent outing for Danny and the gang from The Marq.
In the frame for a murder he didn’t commit, London’s self-proclaimed Sherlock Homo has no choice but to don his metaphorical deerstalker one more time to prove his innocence and uncover the truth about the tragic death of Cathy Byrne.
With the indomitably louche Lady Caz by his side, Danny plunges headlong into a complex investigation while at the same time trying to be a dutiful son to his increasingly secretive parents, and still find the time to juggle his frustratingly moribund love-life.
Today I am pleased to welcome Derek Farrell to my blog and I have a little extract from the book for you on the opening day of the tour.
“Bastards,” Eddie muttered to himself, shrinking deeper into his coat as a sudden gust of wind swept across the deserted and dilapidated square.
He turned back, briefly, to the squat shape of the Goose Green Arms, the sound of laughter and the tinny jukebox audible even at this distance, and contemplated yelling the epithet at the pub before realising that it would probably go unheard by the barman in question and – if heard by others – simply support the bastard’s suggestion that he – Eddie – was a mental case.
What did that jumped up little shitbag know, any way? What right did he have to pass comments like that.
“I’m not mental,” Eddie muttered to himself, wondering, as he did so, whether saying it aloud had been overheard, whether the sight of him – a slight man burrowed down into an overcoat two sizes too big for him – talking to himself in the middle of a deserted community square at gone ten o’clock on a winter night would, in itself, constitute crazy behaviour.
He looked around the square: A corner shop long shuttered for the night, a chip shop that sold some of the most questionable cod around, and four empty units, their shutters even more densely covered in graffiti and filth than the active shops, the four wooden park benches – three of them little more than dangerous sticks pointing sharply up towards the scudding clouds, the local kids having long since ripped the wooden slats away just because they could – and the waste bins, empty and scorched, their purpose pointless as the multiple fires that had been lit had burned away bases and left huge holes in their structures, meaning that anyone who was civic minded enough to dump rubbish into them was wasting their time, as the crisp packets, newspapers and detritus blowing freely around the square attested.
“There was supposed to be more,” he muttered to himself, as another gust – straight from the Baltic, he figured – swept across the square and caught at him, making his eyes water.
Eddie had only wanted another drink, but after some stupid kid had made that comment about his hearing the voices, and laughed at him, he’d gotten upset, and – although he knew he was supposed to stay calm – he’d shouted at the little bastard, telling him that he wasn’t mental.
“I’m sick!” He’d said, and the little fucker had laughed in his face.
“Sick in the head, grandad,” he’s jeered back.
Which was when Eddie had tried to swing for the little bleeder, and the barman – despite having watched the entire exchange with a smirk – stepped in, said “You’ve had enough, Eddie,” and kicked him out.
“I take my medicine,” Eddie muttered to himself. “I got a right to be there. I got a right,” he repeated, louder, then caught himself just in time, and stifled the shout that had been bubbling up, though he failed to stifle the anger that washed – mixed with embarrassment and shame – over him.
“I’m not mental,” he muttered again, seeming to sink even further into his coat as he crossed the deserted square. “I’m just not well. But I’m getting better. And I take my medicine. I do,” he stated emphatically, nodding his head affirmatively.
But he knew he shouldn’t have been drinking. His doctor told him every time: “One or two won’t kill you Eddie, but even a couple of small ones will interfere with the medicine. They’ll do you no favours. So best you just try to leave the booze, yeah? Have a diet coke, something like that. Yeah?”
She always finished her sentences with that “Yeah?” As though she were uncertain if he’d heard or understood her. But he’d heard. And he understood.
But he’d just wanted a couple of drinks. Not even a couple of drinks, to be honest; a bit of company. He’d been sat in that flat all afternoon listening to that bastard banging on next door for ages, then listening to Cathy’s telly when she got home. She always put it on loud, and he didn’t usually mind it – Cathy was a nice lady, and at least there was no arguing tonight – plus, it was better than raised voises and arguments.
But the bastard who had been banging on her door all afternoon, shouting through her letterbox, shouting through his trying to make him open up and take a message for her – take threats and filth, more like – had unsettled him, and he’d wanted to be amongst people who played a bit of dominoes, chatted, laughed a little.
He passed the alcove on the corner of his street.
At one stage, there’d always be young couples – summer or winter – snuggled in it canoodling. The word made him smile. He remembered his grandmother saying it, and remembers thinking it sounded like some sort of outward bound hobby. Like canoeing mixed with doddling.
But there was a railing around it now, the result of the drug dealers who had at one point annexed the space.
Because of the time of year, some local church had put a nativity scene behind the railing, but the vandals had already had a go at that, attempting to nick the plaster sculpture of the virgin, and – finding that it was chained solidly to the ground – settling instead for smashing the head off it.
A couple of forlorn cows stared up at a naked bulb that, he was sure, had housed a triumphant angel, last time he’d looked.
The angel, he surmised, turning the corner, had clearly not been chained as solidly as the virgin mother.
A flurry of something fell as he crossed the courtyard outside Henley Court. Snow, he thought at first, then, shivering deeply, he reconsidered: Sleet.
Bastard sleet, he thought, cursing, now that he was almost home, that he’d not thought to pop to the offie for a couple of cans.
Afterwards, when he was asked why he’d looked up, Eddie really couldn’t explain. He remembered no noise, saw no shadow, didn’t even feel the hackneyed old hairs-on-the-back-of-the-neck routine, but for some reason, he did stop, just before he left the pathway, following the flickers of icy white sleet as they fell, then tracking his eyes upwards, and, for a minute, stupidly, imagining they weren’t sleet, but feathers.
Feathers falling from the outstretched wings of the angel that was hovering over him.
Only, in the second it took him to look up and register the shape, it was no longer hovering, but descending.
And in the moment it took his brain to acknowledge this fact, he realised that what he had taken for wings was actually a coat of some sort flapping wildly in the breeze as the woman – woman, he realised in horror, not angel – fell, a strange keening coming from her, to earth.
He closed his eyes, a moment too late.
Wow what an opening, now that has certainly grabbed my interest and I cannot wait to hear more.
About the Author
Derek Farrell is the author of the Danny Bird Mysteries, ‘Death of a Diva,’ ‘Death of a Nobody’ ‘Death of a Devil,’ and ‘Death of an Angel.’
He was educated in Dublin, and, whilst waiting to become a writer of fabulous crime novels has passed his time being a burger dresser, bank cashier, David Bowie’s paperboy, and an Investment Banker in New York’s World Trade Centre (a bit like The Wolf of Wall Street, only with fewer hookers and more midgets, since you ask).
He is married and divides his time between London, West Sussex and Dublin.
Derek loves to hear from his readers, and can be contacted via Twitter: @derekifarrell or at his sparkly new website Derekfarrell.co.uk
Social Media Links
His books can be purchased as paperbacks or ebooks direct from the publisher Fahrenheit Press at: http://www.fahrenheit-press.com/books_fahrenheit.html
Or from Amazon:
Death of a Diva is also available as a deluxe edition Hardback limited to only 50 Copies worldwide. Purchase it here.
Check out the rest of the blog tour with these fabulous blogs:
My thanks to Derek Farrell for my spot on the blog tour.