Kevin Barry

He is so many miles from love now and home. This is the story of his strangest trip
Beatlebone by Kevin Barry (Paperback ISBN 9781782116165) book cover

Available as Paperback, eBook, Downloadable audio

One of the most talked-about novels of 2015. Winner of the Goldsmiths prize and shortlisted for the Irish Book Awards Novel of the Year.


“John is so many miles from love now and home. This is the story of his strangest trip.”

A novel of family, ghosts, love, music and the quest for truth, Beatlebone recounts a wild journey through the west of Ireland in 1978. At its helm is John, a maddened genius fleeing fame and seeking peace. With his deadpan Irish driver, Cornelius, at his side, John is hellbent on reaching the Island of Dorinish, an assignment he arranged ten years before.

Lyrical, freewheeling, quixotic and fun, Beatlebone is a sad and beautiful comedy.

“Casually lyrical, formally inventive, funny and moving, it is a small wonder”
the Sunday Times

See more reviews

“Maps the long-rumored territory between James Joyce and John Lennon with poetic precision and a wised-up but loving eye. It rewards the fan of both those artists yet stands on its own two (or maybe a shaggy dog’s four) feet … Funny and sneakily informative … I read the final pages as slowly as I could in a vain attempt to keep the dream from being over”
Michael Chabon

“Books like this come along once in a generation”
new York Times

“Gloriously freewheeling … a tale of fame, freaks, bad liquor and bad weather”

“Superb … Beatlebone is a novel of necessary invention: profound, funny, hard to pin down”
irish Times

Kevin Barry

Kevin Barry is the author of the novel City of Bohane and two short story collections, Dark Lies the Island and There Are Little Kingdoms. He was awarded the Rooney Prize in 2007 and won The Sunday Times EFG Short Story Prize in 2012. For City of Bohane he was shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award and the Irish Book Award, and won the Author’s Club First Novel Prize, The European Prize for Literature and the IMPAC Prize. Beatlebone, his second novel, was the winner of the Goldsmiths Prize and was shortlisted for the Irish Book Award.

Kevin Barry’s Beatlebone, triumphant at the 2015 Goldsmiths Prize!

Beatlebone cover

Kevin Barry reads from his Goldsmiths-wining novel Beatlebone in this audio extract

Listen now

Kevin Barry narrates this short video for his Goldsmiths-winning novel Beatlebone.

In These Collections