Publication Date: 22/03/2022 ISBN: 9781529414530 Category:

The Final Revival of Opal & Nev

Dawnie Walton

Publisher: Quercus Publishing
Publication Date: 22/03/2022 ISBN: 9781529414530 Category:
Paperback / Softback





‘A thrilling work’ TA-NEHISI COATES

‘Lovely and lyrical . . . warm and wonderful’ KILEY REID

A queen of punk before her time. A duo on the brink of stardom. A night that will define their story for ever.

Opal is a fiercely independent young woman pushing against the grain in her style and attitude, a Black punk artist before her time. Despite her unconventional looks, Opal believes she can be a star. So when the aspiring British singer/songwriter Neville Charles discovers her one night, she takes him up on his offer to make rock music together.

In early seventies New York City, just as she’s finding her niche as part of a flamboyant and funky creative scene, a rival band signed to her label brandishes a Confederate flag at a promotional concert. Opal’s bold protest and the violence that ensues set off a chain of events that will not only change the lives of those she loves, but also be a deadly reminder that repercussions are always harsher for women, especially Black women, who dare to speak their truth.

Decades later, as Opal considers a 2016 reunion with Nev, music journalist S. Sunny Shelton seizes the chance to curate an oral history about her idols. Sunny thought she knew most of the stories leading up to the cult duo’s most politicized chapter, but as her interviews dig deeper, a nasty new allegation from an unexpected source threatens everything.

Provocative and haunting, The Final Revival of Opal & Nev introduces a bold new name in contemporary fiction and a heroine the likes of which we’ve not seen in storytelling.

‘An absolutely brilliant book’ SARA COLLINS

‘Musical and revolutionary’ JASON REYNOLDS

‘A marvellous musical tale of friendship, betrayal, and the power that comes with self-reclamation’ LAYLA SAAD

‘Fantastic . . . Magical’ ZAKIYA DALILA HARRIS

‘A packed time capsule that doubles as a stick of dynamite’ NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW

‘An absorbing tale bursting with colour’ COSMOPOLITAN

‘One of the books of the year’ STYLIST

‘An utterly fresh take on finding one’s voice’ O, THE OPRAH MAGAZINE

Publisher Review

Lovely and lyrical; a warm and wonderful intersection between journalism and fiction. This is a novel you'll want to read out loud. It's made for readers and music lovers who find themselves wishing that Behind The Music was still on the air * Kiley Reid * Dawnie Walton's The Final Revival Of Opal & Nev is one of the most immersive novels I've ever read. This is largely because of Walton's skill at letting so many people talk in so many different ways. Voices are marshalled from across America, and then across the Atlantic, and blended seamlessly into a tale about black culture, black women, American capitalism. This is a thrilling work of polyphony -- a first novel, that reads like the work of an old hand * Ta-Nehisi Coates * Incredible. There was a moment while reading when the volume of the world went on mute, for me. An absolutely brilliant book * Sara Collins * Like the best fiction, it feels truer and more mesmerizing than some true stories. It's a packed time capsule that doubles as a stick of dynamite * New York Times Book Review * The Final Revival of Opal & Nev is as musical and revolutionary in tone and structure as it is in content. It delves into the complexities of the creative life, specifically as it pertains to Black women, and instead of shying away or egg-shelling, it does what every good book does: tells the truth. A truth that bangs. That shrieks. A siren song to shatter what we've known of the novel. Things won't ever be the same after this. And I'm so happy Dawnie Walton has arrived * Jason Reynolds, author of the New York Times bestseller LONG WAY DOWN * My heart races thrillingly every time I think about Opal & Nev! A marvelous musical tale of friendship, betrayal, and the power that comes with self-reclamation. This story will stay with me for many years to come * Layla Saad * Fantastic. I so desperately wanted Opal Jewel to have existed; I wanted to have experienced her music first-hand. What I love most of all about this book, though, is the way Walton quite literally inserts a strong, bold Black rock musician into a history that's often discouraged us from shining, or from even entering at all. Magical * Zakiya Dalila Harris, author of THE OTHER BLACK GIRL * A dazzling debut * Louise O'Neill * By turns playful and serious, and always wonderfully entertaining, The Final Revival of Opal & Nev is a fascinating account of a woman's search for her father and of the music business in the 1960s and early 70s. The immensely gifted Dawnie Walton creates a vivid chorus of voices as she tells the story of Opal's journey from a church in Detroit to the stage in New York where everything changes. This novel rocks. * Margot Livesey * What a fresh, spirited book. The Final Revival of Opal & Nev has such a lived quality and its every character is so sharply observed, it's hard to believe this is a work of fiction. Then again, one is utterly transported by it: no matter how far away the reader is from the world of 1970s' New York rock and roll, we are let in to this generous, fascinating saga. A huge achievement * Caoilinn Hughes * Walton's fabulous debut novel is an utterly fresh take on finding one's voice, on systemic racism and sexism, and on freedom of expression. That these heavy subjects don't weigh down this hugely entertaining novel are testament to Walton's deftness and skill * O, The Oprah Magazine * The quixotic Opal is a wonderfully flawed heroine and her frustration as a Black female singer denied a voice is particularly apposite. Fans of Daisy Jones & The Six will love it * Red * Walton pumps up the volume with a fresh angle on systemic racism and freedom of expression. This is a firecracker * Publishers Weekly * [An] absorbing tale bursting with colour . . . One for fans of Daisy Jones and The Six * Cosmopolitan * Presented as an oral history of a cult band on the verge of reappraisal, Walton's debut is also a smart, sharp take on white privilege and who owns whose voice * The i * [Layered] in both its organization and its impact, Dawnie Walton's novel tells the story of '70s musicians Opal and Nev and is alternatingly structured as an oral history and recurring editors' notes from a journalist assembling the twisty, politically inflected tale * Vogue US * Delicious and deep ... a rollicking tale of 1970s New York - but with a fascinating twist * Elle US * Daisy Jones & The Six fans will love this story * Good Housekeeping * Walton has created an entirely believable and powerful universe that looks at race, talent, envy and forgiveness and is filled with emotion. It's one of the books of the year * Stylist * [A] brilliant, crackling firework of a debut * Daily Mirror * The book bursts with clear-eyed takes on race, sex, and creativity that Walton unfurls in urgent, endlessly readable style * Entertainment Weekly * Walton has penned a true wonder of a debut novel . . . her writing is impeccable * Library Journal * Provocative, daring and a remarkable female heroine make this unforgettable * Image * With beautiful, honest writing and an otherworldly way of bringing her characters to life, it is safe to say that Dawnie Walton has created a masterpiece with The Final Revival of Opal & Nev * Reading Happy blog * Dawnie Walton's debut is a smash hit. At the heart of the story is Opal Jewel; an audaciously unapologetic Afro-punk heroine, who is so alive as a character that it feels as though Walton has rewritten music history * Irish News * In a combination of music, politics, race and feminism that transcends the line between fiction and reality, Walton makes a poignant statement about freedom of expression and finding your own path * Press Association * Poignant . . . a smash hit * Woman's Way * An engaging and fun read, a case of fiction being truer and more revealing than fact * International Times * Walton has delivered a thoughtful page-turner that locks into its groove early on, and offers a timely exploration of both feminist agency and America's seemingly insoluble problem with race * Big Issue *

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