Fish's father only taught him one thing - punch til ya can't punch no more, then keep punching. It's a strategy that's kept him alive in the alleys and in juve long after his dad dropped dead. But when he meets Cherry, a runaway with unwavering faith and a craving for magic, the stakes become more than survival. Can he stop the bleeding, or can some brokes never be fixed?
McManus captures the grinding decline of the steeltowns of his youth, channelling the frustration of an abandoned and rusted over way of life into a story both visceral and lyrical. Set in the shadows of silent smokestacks, Cherry Smoke is a love poem written in scars and cigarette ash.