Friday, June 11, 2010

Shout Out for “Whispers”

Irish writer John Connolly’s new novel, The Whisperers (Atria)--his ninth to feature New York City cop turned private eye Charlie “Bird” Parker--isn’t due in U.S. bookstores until mid-July.
But in advance of that, the music-loving author has prepared a CD filled with songs that he says, in his liner notes, “have, in a sense, played in the background as I’ve written books, and particularly the two most recent Parker books, The Lovers and The Whisperers. While I prefer silence, I often use music as a way to recharge my batteries, and to remind me of the mood of a book. Thus, certain songs become associated with specific books, or with the Parker series as a whole, often because of a particular lyrical reference, but sometimes simply because their mood resonates with me.”

As a change of pace, I have decided that the prizes in The Rap Sheet’s latest giveaway contest should be five copies of this soundtrack, titled Love & Whispers. Included among the 13 specially selected songs are works by Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood, Emma Pollock, Richard Fontaine, Spiritualized, Patrick Phelan, and Shack.

If you’d like a shot at winning a copy of Love & Whispers, you need only send your name and mailing address to And be sure to write “John Connolly Contest” in the subject line. Entries will be accepted between now and midnight next Wednesday, June 16. Five winners will be chosen at random, and their names will be announced on this page the following day.

Sorry, but this contest is open only to U.S. residents.

Like Connolly, I prefer to write in silence, and to read the same way. But for others, listening to Love & Whispers, while also reading The Whisperers, might be just the ticket. If you don’t know about the forthcoming book yet, here’s Connolly’s plot synopsis:
The border between Maine and Canada is porous. Anything can be smuggled across it: drugs, cash, weapons, people.

Now a group of disenchanted former soldiers has begun its own smuggling operation, and what is being moved is infinitely stranger and more terrifying than anyone can imagine. Anyone, that is, except private detective Charlie Parker, who has his own intimate knowledge of the darkness in men’s hearts.

But the soldiers’ actions have attracted the attention of the reclusive Herod, a man with a taste for the strange. And where Herod goes, so too does the shadowy figure that he calls the Captain. To defeat them, Parker must form an uneasy alliance with a man he fears more than any other, the killer known as the Collector ...
It sounds chilling. Maybe a bit of soothing mood music would be a good thing. You have between now and next Wednesday to enter to win Love & Whispers. What are you waiting around for, a signed invitation?

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