Bellman & Black by Diane Setterfield

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By Diane Setterfield

Bellman & Black is a heart-thumpingly ideal ghost tale, fantastically and irresistibly written, its ratcheting rigidity exquisitely calibrated line by way of line. Its hero is William Bellman, who, as a boy of eleven, killed a sparkly black rook with a catapult, and who grew as much as be anyone, his neighbours imagine, who "could visit the great or the bad." And certainly, even supposing William Bellman's lifestyles at the start turns out blessed--he has a contented marriage to a stunning lady, turns into father to a brood of brilliant, robust young ones, and prospers in business--one by way of one, humans round him die. And at each one funeral, he's startled to determine an odd guy in black, smiling at him. in the beginning, the lifeless are far-off kinfolk, yet ultimately his personal childrens die, after which his spouse, abandoning just one baby, his favorite, Dora. Unhinged by means of grief, William will get inebriated and stumbles to his wife's clean grave--and who could be there ready, however the smiling stranger in black. The stranger has a proposition for William--a mysterious company known as "Bellman & Black" . . .

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3 SI NO REGRESO Artyom estaba seguro de que no podría escapar a un difícil interrogatorio cuando volviera a casa. Su padre adoptivo insistiría en que le contara de qué había estado hablando con Hunter. Pero se llevó una sorpresa: en vez de esperarle para someterle al tercer grado, Sukhoy roncaba plácidamente; había pasado más de veinticuatro horas en pie. Artyom, por su parte, había pasado la noche de guardia, y luego había dormido durante el día. Por ello, le esperaba un nuevo turno de noche en la fábrica de té.

Se ha pasado media vida estudiando literatura mística. Lyokha me habló de un autor que se llamaba Castañeda o algo así. En cualquier caso, está demostrado que ese hombre sabe leer el pensamiento, ver el futuro, encontrar objetos y anunciar peligros. Dice que es capaz de ver espíritus. ¡Imagínatelo: ha llegado a pasearse sin armas por el Metro! Sólo tiene una navaja de resorte para cortar los alimentos, y un bastón de plástico para caminar. Y ahora viene lo más fuerte: dice que los productores y consumidores de dur no saben lo que están haciendo en realidad.

Su padre adoptivo aún dormía, y la estación entera estaba en silencio. Debía de haber pasado ya la hora oficial de cierre de establecimientos. Así pues, faltaba poco para el inicio del turno de noche. Había que darse prisa. De camino hacia la fábrica de té pasó por delante de la tienda de huéspedes en la que se alojaba Hunter, y vio que una de las alas de la entrada estaba levantada. Dentro no había nada. Algo se encogió en el pecho de Artyom. Empezó a comprender que todo aquello de lo que había hablado con Hunter no era ningún sueño, sino realidad, y que el desarrollo posterior de los acontecimientos podía afectarle de manera muy directa.

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