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Publisher's Summary

2022 FICTION AUDIE AWARD WINNER!

An electrifying novel about the meteoric rise of an iconic interracial rock duo in the 1970s, their sensational breakup, and the dark secrets unearthed when they try to reunite decades later for one last tour.

A GOOD MORNING AMERICA BUZZ PICK
NAMED A BEST BOOK OF 2021 BY BARACK OBAMA * THE WASHINGTON POST * NPR * ESQUIRE * ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY * GOODREADS * THE MILLIONS * READER’S DIGEST * PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER * EERIE READER * PUBLIC RADIO TULSA * CHICAGO PUBLIC LIBRARY * KIRKUS REVIEWS

“Feels truer and more mesmerizing than some true stories. It’s a packed time capsule that doubles as a stick of dynamite.” —THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW

Opal is a fiercely independent young woman pushing against the grain in her style and attitude, Afro-punk before that term existed. Coming of age in Detroit, she can’t imagine settling for a 9-to-5 job—despite her unusual looks, Opal believes she can be a star. So when the aspiring British singer/songwriter Neville Charles discovers her at a bar’s amateur night, she takes him up on his offer to make rock music together for the fledgling Rivington Records.

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 to blow up everything.

Provocative and chilling, The Final Revival of Opal & Nev features a backup chorus of unforgettable voices, a heroine the likes of which we’ve not seen in storytelling, and a daring structure, and introduces a bold new voice in contemporary fiction.

©2021 Dawnie Walton. All rights reserved. (P)2021 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

What listeners say about The Final Revival of Opal & Nev

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Authentic and relevant

Loved this story. Well written and narrated. I like how the slice of fiction was woven into real history. Just the right balance without name dropping or event dropping. Loved Andre De Shields character Virgil. He should get his own story lol. This is a fun listen that is entertaining and relevant. Enjoy.

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Okay

The highlight of this book was the voices. They were terrific and brought the characters to life. The storyline dragged and at times was too long. The historical attributes of what they went through at that time were great to learn about and were intertwined into the storyline well. I wish I could have liked the book more, but I felt like I just had to get through it.

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Brilliant layering of music herstory, racial inequities, and black feminism

Where to start with a review of such a wonderfully written and performed novel??? Not only is the book entertaining, the characters complex and interesting, but the story weaves in so much history of racial tension and black feminism in the US. It is brilliant. The way in which Walton intertwines her characters personal narratives with politics in undisputable ways reminds me a bit of Thomas King. I hope Walton has more stories in her because her writing is amazing! And the cast was perfect - they all captured the essence of their characters wei.

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Oral History & Contemporary Lit With A Full Cast!!

If you’re going to consume this book I highly recommend the audiobook with a full cast. It is absolutely fantastic and fits the oral history aspect of it well.

Many people will want to know how close it is to Daisy Jones and the Six and aside from it being about two musicians and having chapters that are oral histories, that’s about it. There are multiple hooks to the book and none are specifically romantic, which I would say is the primary hook for Daisy Jones.

This is a compiled (fictional) manuscript of a story that was to be published but never was, by the daughter of a musician who was killed at a famous event. An event that propelled Opal, a black woman who comes from gospel routes, and Nev,a somewhat quintessential English ex (punk) rocker, into global stardom.

Not only are you wondering what exactly happened to this musician, but you’re also getting Opal and Nev’s story form the perspective of a journalist who is unable to write a story that isn’t biased. Decompressing a key aspect of her identity via other people who are as unreliable narrators as she is.

It’s really, really good. It just works.

Sometimes it’ll have interview notes—the oral history aspect—other times it’ll be editor notes that are basically memoirs.

Together they make up a piece about racism, family drama, the music industry, internal biases, and the memoir aspects mixed in. It takes what worked about Daisy Jones and dials it into contemporary lit and something else that defies exact categorization.

Definitely read this book!

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  • Darrell HANSCHEN
  • 2021-04-26

Outstanding and timely

I almost gave up on this. The start was slow and I wasn’t crazy about the interview format. I kept listening because my daughter told me it was the best book she’d heard in a very long time. She is absolutely right. This book and the narrators are seriously good. I even came to appreciate the format. It’s well worth a credit.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Dani Dubinsky
  • 2021-04-29

My favorite audio book I've listened to!

The story is absolutely captivating- Opal & Nev are so seamlessly sewn into the rock & roll scene that you forget they are a fictional band. The full cast is fantastic, & the story brought up so many great points about racial injustice & white privilege & saviors. A definite must read!

5 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon customer
  • 2021-06-27

As good as advertised

This the single best audiobook I have listened to all year and I have heard more than 100 already. The narration in this full cast production is picture perfect, while the story is both timely and captivating. I give this 5/5 stars.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Deerocks56
  • 2021-04-28

Hard to believe this is fiction

Although I found it difficult to stay present for every word (occasionally the content seemed.unnecessarily detailed),this is an awesome story that I repeatedly had to remind myself was fiction. The format was unique and engaging, and the performance was superb! I am so glad I chose the audio version and I highly recommend it to others.

3 people found this helpful

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  • bmurray
  • 2021-04-21

Amazing!!!

Absolutely loved this book from start to finish! Listened while I read along. All narrators were excellent!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Patti V
  • 2022-02-28

Incredible, relevant, powerful storytelling

The storytelling, the brilliant layering of culturally relevant history with the riveting fictional characters, the generational intrigue, the way she can describe music and performance so clearly you feel like you’re watching it…all of this makes this story (and particularly the Audible performances) something you won’t want to put down.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Dorothy on Kansas
  • 2021-04-18

Can't wait for greatest hits release!

wonderfully entertaining. well written and the narrators were excellent. love the detail given to Opal's "amor". don't want to write more, fearing I'll soil the read for others

2 people found this helpful

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  • Stephen Patterson
  • 2022-03-03

Rock n roll Epic

If you love music, especially the popular music of the late 20th Century, this one's for you. A clear-eyed examination of the good and bad of this time. What a great story! (First time I enjoyed a multi-reader cast. Well done.)

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  • George H.
  • 2022-02-19

Wow. Just wow.

This book was not like anything I expected. I wanted more. I want more of opal. The weaving of true and fiction was magical. It was so real I kept wanting to go to Spotify and look Opal up.

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  • CJ
  • 2022-02-16

Epic

This story/documentary needs to be a movie. I desperately wanted it to be a true story but I found out it wasn’t.

1 person found this helpful