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Prophet Song by Paul Lynch

I listened to this on audible and relished every tortured second. There were moments, on lonely January dog walks where I stopped and wept in forests and fields. Is it a happy book? No. Will it break your heart? Yes. Is it depressing? Oh yes yes yes. But I've never read internal monologues like it. Never stopped so many times, rewound and listened to a line over and again. Another book of the year from me (which will obs mean much more to Paul than winning the Booker).

"she sees how happiness hides in the humdrum, how it abides in the everyday toing and froing as though happiness were a thing that should not be seen, as though it were a note that cannot be heard until it sounds from the past...”

From the back

On a dark, wet evening in Dublin, scientist and mother-of-four Eilish Stack answers her front door to find the GNSB on her step. Two officers from Ireland’s newly formed secret police are here to interrogate her husband, a trade unionist.

Ireland is falling apart. The country is in the grip of a government turning towards tyranny and when her husband disappears, Eilish finds herself caught within the nightmare logic of a society that is quickly unravelling.

How far will she go to save her family? And what – or who – is she willing to leave behind?

Exhilarating, terrifying and propulsive, Prophet Song is a work of breathtaking originality, offering a devastating vision of a country at war and a deeply human portrait of a mother’s fight to hold her family together.


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