This book will be released on 7 September 2023.
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Chloe enters the local talent show, seeking fame, fortune and a ticket out of town. Meanwhile, her mother, Angie, wakes up hungover on the morning of her fourth wedding day. William ponders his impending autism diagnosis through the lenses of Descartes and Hollywood heartthrob Clive Owen. Jimmy, the hot-headed proprietor of a firework shop, rages at the emergence of a rival store, as his ex-wife considers the existential ramifications of her uncanny resemblance to TV cleaning personality Kim Woodburn.
Local Fires sees debut writer Joshua Jones turn his acute focus to his birthplace of Llanelli, South Wales. Sardonic and melancholic, joyful and grieving, these multifaceted stories may be set in a small town, but they have reach far beyond their locality. From the inertia of living in an ex-industrial working-class area, to gender, sexuality, toxic masculinity and neurodivergence, Jones has crafted a collection versatile in theme and observation, as the misadventures of the town’s inhabitants threaten to spill over into an incendiary finale.
In this stunning series of interconnected tales, fires both literal and metaphorical, local and all-encompassing, blaze together to herald the emergence of a singular new Welsh literary voice.
Joshua Jones (he/him) is a queer, autistic writer and artist from Llanelli, South Wales. He has an MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University, and has been published by Gutter Magazine, The Pomegranate London, Poetry Wales, Broken Sleep Books, and more. He has been commended by the Poetry Society and his story ‘Half Moon, New Year’ was shortlisted for the Rhys Davies Short Story Prize in 2021. His ‘poetic installations’ have been exhibited at Glynn Vivian Gallery, Swansea, Ty Turner House in Penarth, and elsewhere. His collaborative pamphlet with artist Caitlin Flood-Molyneux, Fistful of Flowers, was published in 2022. Local Fires is his debut fiction publication.