Best of What's Next 2009: Peter Murphy [Author]
Hometown: Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Ireland.
Book: John the Revelator
For Fans Of: Flannery O’Connor, Davis Grubb, Ray Bradbury
From the classic opening line, “I was born in a storm,” Murphy’s daring debut John the Revelator surges forward like a swollen stream, the author taking a page from Flannery O’Connor as he explores morality and the grotesqueness of human life. The bildungsroman centers on John Devine—the only son of a single, Bible-quoting mother—who befriends a rebellious new kid in town. Southeast Ireland’s gothic landscape is the perfect setting for this tale of betrayal, which is marked by tight prose, memorable characters, witty dialogue and Murphy’s singular voice.
What’s Next? “I’ve recorded a spoken word/music album based on sections from the book,” says Murphy, an erstwhile drummer and music journalist. “The music ranges from Velvets-style avant-folk to neoclassical to full on Godspeed/Mogwai apocalypse drone rock.” The album, The Sounds of John the Revelator, is planned as a standalone release, with a live ensemble also in the works. Murphy is also working on his second novel. “I’m superstitious when it comes to talking about work in progress,” he says. “But I’m having fun. All I’ll say for now is, ‘A river runs through it.’”
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