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The Quiet Whispers Never Stop

On sale

2nd March 2023

Price: £8.99

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Selected: Paperback / ISBN-13: 9781529373592

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AN IRISH EXAMINER BOOK OF THE YEAR
SHORTLISTED FOR THE BUTLER LITERARY AWARD
SHORTLISTED FOR THE KATE O’BRIEN AWARD

‘Touching and darkly beautiful’ Irish Sunday Independent
‘Powerful, uncompromising’ Irish Times
‘Utterly absorbing, a novel that keeps you guessing right to the end’ Kit de Waal

1982. Northern Ireland. Nuala Malin is tied to a life she doesn’t want by her daughter Sam and baby son PJ. An affair with a seventeen-year-old boy reminds her of a future she hasn’t given up on, but it can’t last, and when her chance to leave comes, she takes it.

1994. If Sam Malin has a god then it is Kurt Cobain. Music is the only thing that brings her peace. She wants a life away from the North and its troubles, away from her da who can’t talk about the past but seems stuck there, waiting for Sam’s mother to return. A mother Sam barely knew.

Escape seems out of reach until Sam meets a jagged, magnetic older man, drawn to him in a way she can’t yet comprehend.

She falls for him, unable to say no.

Sam is more like her mother than she knows.

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Reviews

Jan Carson
Captivating characters and stunning storytelling . . . This is going to be a huge book
Alan McMonagle
A courageous and openhearted testimony to an unsung generation . . . a very fine debut
Niamh Boyce
A beautifully structured, compulsive, sensual, and sometimes raw read . . . a huge achievement
Sue Divin
A stunning debut
Stephen Walsh
A vividly realised book that held me in its grip, and will command your attention
Danielle McLaughlin
Dazzling. The delight Fitzsimons takes in language, and the skill with which she wields it, is evident on every page. A writer of immense talent
Louise Nealon
Olivia Fitzsimons writes about things that most of us are not able to think about. It is almost as if she has excavated this story from one of the most inaccessible parts of the Irish psyche
Michelle Gallen
Striking . . . an urgent story of love, loss and escape
Kit de Waal
Utterly absorbing, a novel that keeps you on the page and keeps you guessing right to the end. Taut and clever prose and a cast of characters that feel totally real. A great debut and a writer to watch
Elaine Feeney
It is hard to believe that The Quiet Whispers Never Stop is a debut. Brilliantly observed, smart, bold, funny mad and devastating, Olivia Fitzsimons is such a talent
Irish Times
[A] powerful, uncompromising debut
Estelle Birdy, Irish Sunday Independent
An exceptional debut . . . Fitzsimons is an incredibly skilful writer who infuses every scene with depth of feeling and authenticity . . . Warm, funny and sad, this is a touching and darkly beautiful book
Totally Dublin
Searing . . . with a sharp humour and a highly original voice . . . This is not a 'coming of age' story, a love story, or a dissection of marriage; it's all of these things at once, and somehow more nakedly raw than those genres, alone, could possibly capture.
Luke Cassidy
A brave, essential book . . . beautiful
Sheila Armstrong
Lyrical and explosive in equal measure, this book pulses with love and loss
Louise O'Neill
A gorgeous coming of age story, exploring the mother-daughter relationship with generosity and nuance
Sue Leonard, Irish Examiner, Books of the Year
The narrative pings along - as compulsive as it is shocking . . . a brilliant debut - the best Irish one in a strong year