Driving to the seaside together are a young girl on the verge of womanhood, her mother and her stepfather with his son. But this is no ordinary trip. There’s something sinister about Evan Charlton, and all too soon the girl is plunged into a nightmare world that she cannot understand.
This debut collection of short stories by the award-winning writer and journalist Nigel Jarrett brings together places of violence, longing, helplessness and vivid remembrance, where characters must cope with the darker side of human relationships, often inside the seemingly cosy world of the family.
From the Rhys Davies Prize-Winning story about a married Japanese woman risking a scandalous love-affair to a hotel in 1950s post-war Switzerland, Nigel’s stories explore romance with tragedy, family with madness and the lives of people with a warm and tender humour.
'...as a music critic by profession, Jarrett has a marvellous ear... And the stand-out story, 'Mrs Kuroda on Penyfan', is an enigmatic study of a Japanese woman's displacement in rural Wales.' Alfred Hickling, Guardian
'Nigel Jarrett's stories take seemingly ordinary or innocent situations and gently tease out their emotional complexity. Both 'Funderland' and 'A Point of Dishonour' confound expectations superbly...He's not afraid of unusual perspectives and his bravery is well rewarded in this unusual and sensitive collection.' Lesley McDowell, Independent
'Funderland, Nigel Jarrett's superb short story collection, demands the tribute of slow and careful reading [...] The revelation of these stories is the vast and subtle and inarticulate web that links and separates us all. Read them slowly, more than once, and learn.' Planet magazine
'Funderland is an excellent first offering, giving a thought provoking series of wry, often wistful fresh angles on the fragility of relationships. Readers will want more, anticipating the emergence of a strong, telling voice in fiction from Wales.' Robert Walton, New Welsh Review
Nigel Jarrett is a freelance writer, a former daily-newspaper reporter and a winner of the Rhys Davies Prize for short fiction. For many years he has been music critic of the South Wales Argus. Born in Cwmbran, he was educated at West Mon School, Pontypool, and at Cardiff University. He likes drawing, never tires of watching his cat and is insanely devoted to jazz. He lives in Chepstow with his wife, Ann, a retired teacher.