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The Birds That Never Flew - Margot McCuaig


Shortlisted for the Dundee International Book Prize 2012

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The Birds That Never Flew

'The clock had called time and his was well and truly up. The bastard was about to die. Not even the Virgin Mary, whether she was here or she wasn't was going to get in the way of that.'


Battered and bruised, Elizabeth has taken her daughter and left her abusive husband Patrick. Again. In the bleak and impersonal Glasgow housing office Elizabeth meets the provocatively intriguing drug addict Sadie, who is desperate to get her own life back on track.


The two women forge a fierce and interdependent relationship as they try to rebuild their shattered lives, but despite their bold, and sometimes illegal attempts it seems impossible to escape from the abuse they have always known, and tragedy strikes.


More than a decade later Elizabeth has started to implement her perfect revenge - until a surreal Glaswegian Virgin Mary steps in with imperfect timing and a less than divine attitude to stick a spoke in the wheel of retribution.


Tragic, darkly funny and irreverent, The Birds That Never Flew ushers in a new and vibrant voice in Scottish literature.