When disgraced clinical psychologist Dr Steven Brady takes the only job he can get, tending the chronic patients in a rundown Manchester mental hospital, he finds the path to redemption more dangerous than he ever imagined. Among the residents is Mary Ward, a young woman with a violent past and a talent for knowing things she shouldn't - including the name that stains Brady's conscience. As Mary tells him of the boy who visits her in the night, the boy whose suicide he failed to prevent two years before, Brady slowly accepts what she is: a conduit, a living link between this world and those beyond.
But someone already knows her true nature.
Billy Crawford is a preacher, a self-styled messenger of the Lord, a madman with blood on his hands. Why has he befriended Mary's estranged mother? Why has he persuaded her to fight for her daughter's release after all these years? He keeps the secret close to his heart, lest anyone discover the awful thing that cold voice demands of him
Growing suspicious, Brady moves to protect Mary, his one hope of atonement - but atonement will cost him dear.
A 94,000 word paranormal thriller, CONDUIT explores the boundaries between mind and spirit, madness and faith, the gifted and the cursed. As it reaches its climax, the struggle between Brady and Crawford unleashes the dreadful power within Mary, and no-one is safe - least of all the girl each man sees as his salvation.
Pare this down and give us a sense of what's at stake. Why does Billy want Mary? She's a link to the world beyond? So what? You need to tell us why that's important.
And "path to redemption" means what? He wants to get out of Manchester? Who doesn't?
And "madmen" are boring. Intransigent, sure of their righteousness and willing to enforce their dogma preachers are scary as hell.