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Utopia Avenue

David Mitchell

$32.99

Paperback

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Sceptre
14 July 2020
Rock & Pop music; Fiction & Literature; Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
The spectacular new novel from the bestselling author of CLOUD ATLAS and THE BONE CLOCKS.

Utopia Avenue might be the most curious British band you've never heard of.

Emerging from London's psychedelic scene in 1967, folksinger Elf Holloway, blues bassist Dean Moss, guitar virtuoso Jasper de Zoet and jazz drummer Griff Griffin together created a unique sound, with lyrics that captured their turbulent lives and times. The band produced only two albums in two years, yet their musical legacy lives on.

This is the story of the band's brief, blazing journey from Soho clubs and draughty ballrooms to the promised land of America, just when the Summer of Love was receding into something much darker - a multi-faceted tale of dreams, drugs, love, sexuality, madness and grief; of stardom's wobbly ladder and fame's Faustian pact; and of the collision between youthful idealism and jaded reality as the Sixties drew to a close.

Above all, this bewitching novel celebrates the power of music to connect across divides, define an era and thrill the soul.

David Mitchell's seven novels include Cloud Atlas and The Bone Clocks. He has been shortlisted twice for the Booker Prize and lives in Ireland.

Praise for David Mitchell's previous work:

'Open up his head and a whole magical, ecstatic symphony of inventiveness and ideals will fly out.' The Times 'Mitchell's imagination is boundless and absolutely thorough, and he is also very funny.' Sunday Telegraph 'An author of extraordinary ambition and skill.' Independent on Sunday 'A storyteller of genius . . . a man who may yet prove to be the greatest writer of his age.' Mail on Sunday 'Dizzyingly, dazzlingly good' Daily Mail 'Our most accomplished inventor of multitudinous worlds, which are filled with complex, vital people.' Financial Times


See Also

Cloud Atlas, David Mitchell
The Bone Clocks, David Mitchell
By:   David Mitchell
Imprint:   Sceptre
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 152mm,  Spine: 50mm
Weight:   700g
ISBN:   9781444799439
ISBN 10:   1444799436
Pages:   576
Publication Date:   14 July 2020
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

David Mitchell is the author of the novels Ghostwritten, number9dream, Cloud Atlas, Black Swan Green, The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, The Bone Clocks and Slade House. He has been shortlisted twice for the Booker Prize, won the John Llewellyn Rhys, Geoffrey Faber Memorial and South Bank Show Literature Prizes among others, and been named a Granta Best Young British Novelist. In 2018, he won the Sunday Times Award for Literary Excellence, given in recognition of a writer's entire body of work. In addition, David Mitchell together with KA Yoshida has translated from Japanese two books by Naoki Higashida - The Reason I Jump: One Boy's Voice from the Silence of Autism and Fall Down Seven Times, Get Up Eight: A Young Man's Voice from the Silence of Autism. He lives with his wife and their two children in Ireland.

Reviews for Utopia Avenue

A great book! I was completely engrossed for two days. What makes it a stand-out triumph is the vibrant flair with which it recreates an era, the acuteness with which it explores composition and performance, and its often witty verbal finesse. - Sunday Times Mitchell is expert at excavating the seams of loss, ambition and mere chance that lie under the edifice of fame . . . The reader is impelled from the first by a kind of rushing, gleeful energy . . . a supremely readable novel, if the quality of readability is taken to be one which is difficult to achieve and a relief to encounter. - Guardian Superb . . . enormous fun . . . a celebratory page-turner. - Literary Review A book bristling with pleasures . . . An overwhelmingly vivid - and equally exhilarating - portrait of an era when the future seemed likely to be shaped by a combination of young people and music. At the same time, there's a melancholy sense of the transience of this idealism . . . Utopia Avenue confirms that his real talent - perhaps even genius - lies in finding wildly entertaining new ways to tell old truths. - Spectator [Mitchell] tells a linear tale and eschews literary pirouetting to create a set of characters and recreate a period with . . . [such] superb believability . . . Gig upon gig conjures that danger and euphoria of the live experience of amplified sound . . . Mitchell rescues this brief slice of the past, made so poignant because its brilliance was so ephemeral, and brings it into the shimmering present. The result is that Utopia Avenue does what music does: it joins up time. - Daily Telegraph An ambitious, rambunctious, hugely enjoyable tale . . . [it] is filled with sparkling dialogue and has stimulating things to say about creativity, mental health, the effects of domestic violence, the Vietnam War, grief, parental responsibility and what it was perhaps like to be an independent-minded female musician back in the day. Above all, Mitchell pulls off this bold attempt at a novel exploring the undefinable mysteries of music and why music has such an impact on people. - Independent With his huge electric brain, Mitchell has written his own solo scenius, one that draws connections between Edo-era Japan and a distant, post-human-collapse future. It's a grand project, brilliantly executed and deeply humanist. Utopia Avenue is the most fun stop along the way and aptly named. - Los Angeles Times


See Also