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All booksHistorical fictionThe Final Revival of Opal & Nev
The Final Revival of Opal & Nev by Dawnie Walton
Historical fiction

The Final Revival of Opal & Nev

Debut
We love supporting debut authors. Congrats, Dawnie Walton, on your first book!
Early Release
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by Dawnie Walton

Quick take

For fans of Daisy Jones & The Six: a rollicking tale with equal parts rock 'n' roll and Black feminist punk spirit.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_MultipleNarrators

    Multiple viewpoints

  • Illustrated icon, Literary

    Literary

  • Illustrated icon, Icons_Buzzy

    Buzzy

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Writerlife

    Writer's life

Why I love it

Aly Raisman
Gold Medal Gymnast and Advocate

The Final Revival of Opal & Nev: From page one of this fictional story written as a series of interviews, I felt like I was right there watching everything unfold. I had to keep reminding myself that the characters weren’t actually real-life rock stars and that I couldn’t look them up online!

Meet S. Sunny Curtis. She’s an award-winning writer and editor-in-chief with complicated ties to famed musician Opal Jewel. And who is Opal? She’s a singing icon who is unapologetically herself and one-half of the short-lived duo, Opal & Nev. When Sunny begins her research, there are still questions swirling about what happened between Opal & Nev and rival band the Bond Brothers all those years ago. I admire S. Sunny Curtis’s determination and bravery as she explores the story she swore she would never pursue. And when she uncovers a new revelation, the narrative changes forever.

This gripping novel reads like an exposé and a tribute at the same time. I couldn’t put the book down as I kept learning more about the whole cast of characters who share their personal stories as well as their varying perspectives on what really happened. An unforgettable page-turner, The Final Revival of Opal & Nev is a uniquely-written examination of racism, family tensions, the music industry, and American society of the 1970s.

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Synopsis

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.

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Preview

Get an early look from the first pages of The Final Revival of Opal & Nev.

Member thoughts

All (7246)
All (7246)
Love (3022)
Like (3381)
Dislike (843)
7378 ratings
  • 41% Love
  • 46% Like
  • 11% Dislike
  • Virginia Beach, VA

    Absolutely captivating. The writing makes you feel as though you’re part of a crowd watching Opal perform. I was so caught off guard - and enraged - by the twist in the story. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Jersey City , NJ

    I LOVED Opal and wanted more of her! The book overall was very good but I found myself reading it so slowly—the “editors notes” parts in particular slowed me down. I’m between love and like for this 1

  • South Burlington, VT

    I’ve never read a story written like this. The interview-style sorry gave the characters more depth then I was expecting and the story felt so real that I thought Opal could’ve been a musician today.

  • ATLANTA, GA

    The similarities to “Daisy Jones” are obvious, but this book has its own strengths - bold characters, inclusion of real life people, and political commentary. Wish I had an ounce of Opal’s sparkle!

  • Missoula, MT

    I really loved and got angered reading this book. I love music, I love this way of storytelling- the audiobook brought so many of these wonderful characters to even more life. History woven in was ????

  • Gilbert, AZ

    Incredibly fun read that embraces nuance, tugs at the heart strings and brings you face to face with some ugly but necessary questions about race and allyship and the “progress” of the last 50 years

  • Ellicott City, MD

    Incredible, and among my all-time faves. I loved the story, the characters, the flavor of the music scene, the politics, the spot-on vibe of 2016–they were all so brilliantly and beautifully executed!

  • Pickerington, OH

    This is such a timely reminder that as much as we think things change they remain the same. This book is beautifully written, nuanced and thoughtful and just as engaging as Opal, it’s powerful star.

  • Chicago, IL

    The interview format really heightened the characterization, tension, and humor in the story. The characters were entertaining & believable. I’d recommend this for readers wanting refreshing fiction.

  • Saint Louis, MO

    A delightful and thought-provoking read. Highly enjoyable. Loved that it was written in the format of an oral history. Wish I could download some Opal Jewel to rock out to myself. You will ❤️ it!

  • Hasbrouck Heights , NJ

    I love the format of this book- the interview style is so interesting. I love reading books where the fictional characters seem so real! It was also so timely with the integration of race and politics

  • Palm Harbor, FL

    Loved this one!!! If you love reading about a different era & a coming of age story, this is your book! It covers racism/sexism during that time &gives us a raw honest look at what people went through

  • KEENE, NY

    This book is amazing -- authentic characters and plot, both developed through a series of intricately written and woven "interview notes." The main characters are all complex, both heroic and flawed.

  • Westfield, IN

    Heavy while funny with slight suspense, all at the same time. The writing style (interviews, media clippings, not traditional narrative) fostered a tell-all vibe of your new favorite (fictional) band.

  • Harlan, KY

    I loved this book! Interesting, well-developed, complicated characters, that rock-n-roll life, deft handling of racism, sexism, & a duplicitous ally. Those who loved Daisy Jones should def. read this!

  • FPO, AE

    I loved this book! The characters were so well developed and the story was so engaging. I loved how it put all the issues of the world out, plain to see in a real and raw way. I thought it was great.

  • Longview, TX

    Heart, heart, heart Opal! The chaos between Opal and Nev feels like reading a tell-all tabloid. Relevant take on issues, on fronts we’re still fighting for today. Captures the era of fame perfectly!

  • Clarksville, TN

    Absolutely phenomenal. The perfect blend of historical fiction, racial tension, grief, and complicated relationships. There are too many layers to sort through here, but I promise they're worth readin

  • New York , NY

    This page turner is full of great twists and turns that feel very real. Many times I wanted to go on my computer to look up the artists and then had to realize this is all fiction. Highly recommended!

  • Natrona Heights, PA

    As a fan of DJ & TS, I like that this take on a musical journey includes many more current societal issues. I also love the representation & connection of two strong Black leads. Music is influential!

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