Genre: YA Literary
Word Count: 50,000
When Ian Calloway goes on a walk and comes back in a coffin, his twelve-year-old cousin is determined to find out why.
When I was twelve my cousin Ian went on a walk and came back to us in a coffin. He was seventeen, real, solid and full of life one moment and the next a still, cold thing in a wooden box. It was an accident. The driver simply did not see him, one shadow on the road among many. This was the worst truth of his death: that he could disappear so easily it was if he had not mattered at all.
The funeral was quiet. It seemed like every member of our town was there, shrouded in black taffeta and starched collars. The priest’s voice was deep and soothing, and it all ran together like paint over Mama’s tears. I could feel her shaking with them, one hand fisted into a tissue.