Constable & Toop

Gareth P. Jones
"A darkly comic Dickensian ghost story from Blue Peter Award winner Gareth P. Jones: it's not the dead you'll need to worry about!"
Constable & Toop – picture

A darkly comic Dickensian ghost story from Blue Peter Award winner Gareth P. Jones: it’s not the dead you’ll need to worry about!

Sam Toop lives in a funeral parlour, blessed (or cursed) with an unusual gift. While his father buries the dead, Sam is haunted by their constant demands for attention. Trouble is afoot on the ‘other side’ – there is a horrible disease that is mysteriously imprisoning ghosts into empty houses in the world of the living. And Sam is caught in the middle – will he be able to bring himself to help?

Blue Peter Award winner Gareth P. Jones has woven a darkly comic story, a wonderfully funny adventure that roams the grimy streets of Victorian London.

Publication Date: Thu 4 Oct 2012
ISBN Paperback: 9781471400117
ISBN Ebook: 9781471400124



Gareth P. Jones

Gareth divides his time between writing books, visiting schools, producing TV programmes and annoying his friends and family by playing the ludicrous number of stringed instruments in his front room. He won the Blue Peter Book of the Year Prize 2012 for THE CONSIDINE CURSE, and THE CASE OF THE MISSING CATS, the first book in The Dragon Detective Agency series, was nominated for the Waterstones Children's Book Prize. THE THORNTHWAITE INHERITANCE won seven children's book awards, and his previous books for Hot Key Books, CONSTABLE & TOOP and THE SOCIETY OF THIRTEEN, were extremely well-received. Follow Gareth at or on Twitter: @jonesgarethp


Sam glanced at his uncle. He had no desire to reveal his gift to him. He tried to ignore the ghost but she continued to go on. 'They say you're a Talker. You can hear and see us. They say you'll help us. Please help me. I must tell my Tom not to marry her.' Sam disliked the maudlers and the mopers most of all, always coming to him, begging for help. At least this one was pretty. A few years older than Sam, twenty perhaps, but even in death he could see she had been a beauty. He shifted his eyes to indicate that he would speak with her outside, then poured a ladleful of soup into the bowl and placed it back in front of his uncle. 'You shouldn't listen to your old man,' said Uncle Jack. 'We used to be as thick as thieves, me and him. I don't know what he's said about me before, but every story has two sides. Most have more.' 'He's never mentioned you,' replied Sam honestly. Jack swallowed a mouthful of soup. 'This tastes better now, lad. You'll make someone a good wife some day.' He laughed. 'Oh, there you go again with your sulky looks. It was a joke.' The lady in the nightdress sniffed. 'And pay no attention to her, neither,' added Jack in a hushed voice. 'I'll bet her chap's better off with the sister than with that moaning old trout.'