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Red Sky in Morning
red sky in morning (2013)

Coll Coyle wakes to a blood dawn and a day he does not want to face. The young father stands to lose everything on account of the cruel intentions of his landowner’s heedless son.


Although reluctant, Coll sets out to confront his trouble. And so begins his fall from the rain-soaked, cloud-swirling Eden, and a pursuit across the wild bog lands of Donegal.

Behind him is John Faller – a man who has vowed to hunt Coll to the ends of the earth – in a pursuit that will stretch to an epic voyage across the Atlantic, and to greater tragedy in the new American frontier.

Red Sky in Morning is a dark tale of oppression bathed in sparkling, unconstrained imagery. A compassionate and sensitive exploration of the merciless side of man and the indifference of nature, it is both a mesmerizing feat of imagination and a landmark piece of fiction.


UK & Ireland: Quercus, 2013 | North America: Little, Brown 2013 | France: Albin Michel 2014 | Italy: 66th & 2nd 2017 …. 


• Shortlisted: Prix du Meilleur Livre Étranger (Best Foreign Book Prize) 

•  Shortlisted: Ireland’s Bord Gais Irish Books of the Year 2013   

•  Nominated: Prix du Premier Roman (First Novel Prize)

• Book of the Month: 

•  Selected for Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers series.

• Book of the Year: The Toronto Star | The Irish Times | Irish Independent |

Sunday Business Post | Irish Mail on Sunday



“Paul Lynch’s startling, evocative prose veers closer to poetry…. A wonderful achievement. A thrilling plot is expressed in the most beautiful, idiosyncratic style.”

— Kristoffer Mullin, The Sunday Times

“It is written in tones that are sumptuous and poetic, so I am savouring the book sentence by sentence. Lynch’s sense of the period, and the huge disruptions in society which affected every single character, is clever and well informed, but he has taken a real and fascinating risk with the style”.

— Colm Tóibín, The Guardian

“A compulsive read.… a combination of the poetic and the vicious. It unabashedly uses a 21st-century sensibility to subvert the conventions of the ‘historical’ novel”

— Arminta Wallace, Irish Times

“A novel of distinction”

— John Boland, Irish Independent

“You find yourself in the hands of a lapidary young master”

— Alan Cheuse, All Things Considered, NPR (US)

“Red Sky in Morning is queasy reading at first, and readers unfamiliar with this loquacious strain of Irish fiction may not stick around long enough to experience the rich intoxication it eventually pro­duces. They should, though, because a debut as passionate as this one is a transporting experience.”

— Steve Donoghue, The Washington Post

“Lynch’s language, which is musical, close, and alive, evokes something that seems quintessentially Irish….His combination of nightmarish poetry and heart-racing plot is what makes Red Sky in Morning so compelling, like a gorgeous, terrifying ghost story. You’ll want to close your eyes and cover your ears, but find you can’t turn away.”

— Damaris Colhoun, The Daily Beast

“One the year’s most striking debuts… the gnarled beauty of Lynch’s poetic prose makes this novel a singular achievement.

— Emily Donaldson, The Toronto Star, books of the year

“Wonderfully inventive use of language and cinematic vision…  a startlingly original page-turner”

— Donal Ryan, Irish Times books of the Year

“This rewarding debut has the feel of a classic American western…. Lynch’s prose is sharply observed, and his themes are elemental and powerful: the violence of existence, the illusion of choice in a fatalistic universe.”

— Publishers Weekly, Star Review (US)

“A novel of great beauty.”

— Kirkus, Star Review (US)


“Just another substantiation of the adage that the Irish can really, really write. If Dublin-based Lynch’s taut, absorbing, acerbically lyrical prose weren’t enough, there’s the intense and revelatory plot.

— Barbara Hoffert, Library Journal (US)

“Bears comparison to Colum McCann’s Transatlantic… rendered in startlingly beautiful prose, not unlike the themes and style of Cormac McCarthy. This is strong stuff.”

— Mark Levine, Booklist (US)

“Lynch writes with a poetic sensibility, definitely influenced by the grand tradition of Irish writing, but also very distinctive in its rhythm and effect. A sentence of this author’s descriptive prose has the anxious stilt and inevitable propulsion of a broken locomotive… literary debuts of this level of accomplishment are rare.

— Steven Carroll, The Canberra Times

“Not many writers can keep their readers through more than 200 pages of unremittingly bleak harshness, but Paul Lynch does so in this outstanding first novel.”

— Frank O’Shea, The Sydney Morning Herald

“A literary star is born… Red Sky in Morning is an epic tale of murder, pursuit, and oppression… vividly drawn, beautifully written, and propulsive from the get-go. It’s a thumping good read — and a real heartbreaker”

— Image magazine

“The novel is a lush and vivid read…. beautiful and frequently thrilling.”

— The Sunday Business Post

“Beautifully written… a massive new voice”

— Brian McGilloway, The Book Programme, BBC Radio Ulster

“Lynch’s searingly dark lyricism is redolent of Cormac McCarthy at his most gothic… an arresting new voice in Irish fiction”

— MetroHerald

“Muscular and opulent… the novel is ripe with spookily vivid writing. A very stylishly written book that takes the Irish novel into quite a different genre”

— The Examiner

Very poignant… Red Sky in Morning is a riveting read. A raw, beautiful book.

— Historical Novel Society

“Mesmerizing. Paul Lynch is a writer with a distinctive and exhilarating style. A stunning debut novel, Red Sky in Morning is a beautifully written, engaging story. A writer with a great future.”

— The Book Bag

“A powerful, lyrical novel. [Lynch] writes beautifully too: you’ll find yourself re-reading sentences just to savour the gorgeous prose.”

— Hot Press

“Paul Lynch has a sensational gift for a sentence, inherited from the likes of Cormac McCarthy, Sebastian Barry and Daniel Woodrell. He is a writer to watch out for, staking a bid for a territory all his own”

— Colum McCann, author of Let The Great World Spin

“Paul Lynch’s writing is full of dark invention and brutal beauty. A raw and audacious talent which grips Irish writing by the neck”

— Hugo Hamilton, author of The Speckled People

‘This book makes the literary synapses spark and burn. Forged in his own new and wonderful language, Paul Lynch reaches to the root, branch and bole of things, and unfurls a signal masterpiece’

— Sebastian Barry, author of The Secret Scripture

‘Classic storytelling, rough and haunted people and the times that made them, powerfully conjured, written in language that demands attention. Lynch is bardic, given to sly and inspired word selections, with his own sprung rhythms and angled, stark musicality’

— Daniel Woodrell, author of Winter’s Bone

“A textured thriller straight from the torment of Ireland’s 19th century. Paul Lynch delivers a raw ancient world that Dickens would have recognized, and Roberto Bolano too.”

— Peter Behrens, author of The Law of Dreams

“Good god — just finished Paul Lynch’s Red Sky in Morning. Devastating. Gnashing teeth and pulling hair — loved it.”

— Evie Wyld (on Twitter), author of All The Birds, Singing

“The art of the storytelling is so impressive, the writing so poetic, painful and beautiful at the same time, that it makes for a unique reading experience”

— Bruno Corty , Le Figaro (France)

“The language is rich, sophisticated, lyrical and violent at the same time… a first novel worthy of Cormac McCarthy, Saul Bellow, John Banville, Colum McCann, Vladimir Nabokov, or authors of such legacy.”

— Emmanuel Romer, La Croix (France)

“The most astonishing first novel of the year. At the point of writing, already among the greatest talents of Irish literature”

— Julien Bisson, Lire (France)

“The new guard of Irish letters never ceases to fascinate with its visionary power. To these names must immediately be added Paul Lynch, because his first novel is simply masterful

— André Clavel, Le Temps (Switzerland)

Nothing is missing in this transcontinental western, written by a master of landscape and light”

— Véronique Rossignol, Livres Hebdo (France)

“This first novel by an extraordinary writer has received a tremendous reception in the Anglo-Saxon world. The bet is that he will be as successful in France, where such talent will not fail to burst into the open”

— Sophie Royere , (France)

“A dark poetry infuses this first novel of sound and fury. A young writer promised to a brilliant future”

— Le Journal du Dimance

“In a few words: the craftsmanship of a great stylist”

— La Quinzaine Littéraire

“The beauty of his writing imbued with lyricism is dazzling”

— Elle

“Influenced and nourished by a past more mythical than historical, “Red Sky in Morning” is as contemporary a novel as it can be. Its rhythms and its visions, and its suspense, come from our age’s visual and cinematographic culture. With its mixed influences, its shattered geography which opens on the beginnings of America and modernity, this novel blends irreconcilable temporalities”

— Le Monde de Livres

“There is in Paul Lynch’s writing a kind of lyrical and poetic fever which transcends everything, including the most harrowing scenes. Red Sky in Morning takes us on such a journey that when we come to the end, we feel like we have dreamed it all”

— Les Echoes

“An amazing first novel, strikingly beautiful, with a nervous pace that takes the reader on an unforgettable journey”


“Clear and intense as a tragedy, the novel reveals in Paul Lynch an incredibly talented Irish writer”

— Trois Couleurs

Buy Red Sky In Morning
Buy red sky in morning

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