When a man's body is discovered near the picturesque town of Hay-on-Wye, his death appears to be 'unnatural' in every sense. Merrily Watkins is drafted in to investigate. 'Rickman's writing style reflects his subject matter: spooky and indirect, elegantly crafted but always a sense of shadow behind you, that you've missed something you should have seen.' - New York Review Of Books 'The wind was rising. A smokey cloud-mass shaped like a rabbit made a forward bound in slow motion and came apart over Hay Castle a mile away on the horizon . . .' Hay-on-Wye: the Welsh-border town that became world-famous for declaring independence and crowning its own king. But now black clouds are gathering, to meet rising shadows from the past. As the town fights for its future, a man drowns in a deep pool below a waterfall, a woman disappears, and diocesan exorcist Merrily Watkins - alone and vulnerable - uncovers a secret history of dark magic and ritual murder.