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ACCLAIMED AUTHOR CROSSES THE POND: A poet as well as a novelist, Eaves’s previous work has been shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award, Encore Award, Goldsmiths Prize, and Ted Hughes Award. Murmur, which was published by the UK’s CB Editions in 2018 after its opening section was shortlisted for the 2017 BBC National Short Story Award, has since won the Wellcome Book Prize and Republic of Consciousness Prize, been shortlisted for the Goldsmiths Prize and James Tait Black Prize, and longlisted for the Rathbones Folio Prize. The novel has also garnered rave reviews from major media outlets, including the Guardian, and from UK booksellers, including Gary Michael Perry, head of fiction at Foyles, who calls it “Eaves’ best work to date, full of grace and kindness and big ideas.” Bellevue Literary Press is proud to introduce this exceptionally talented author to North American readers for the first time.
NEW IMAGINING OF A RESURRECTED HISTORIC FIGURE: In writing Murmur, Eaves was inspired by Alan Turing, both a World War II hero and a scientific genius whose work continues to shape our understanding of technology and artificial intelligence. While Turing has been the subject of other fictional accounts—most notably in the Benedict Cumberbatch movie The Imitation Game, Neal Stephenson’s novel Cryptonomicon, and Janna Levin’s novel A Madman Dreams of Turing Machines—Eaves moves beyond the stories of Turing’s heroism and scientific achievements to tell a greater story about a brilliant scientist trying to overcome grievous pain by treating himself as the object of his own enquiry. As E&T Magazine writes, “There is hardly an aspect of Turing’s story that is not deeply thrilling, fascinating or moving. As such, many depictions of Turing’s life are forced to narrow their focus in order to fully explore that aspect of him. . . . Murmur is ambitious, setting out to explore numerous aspects of Turing’s life and work in the space of a short novel” that “whisks [readers] on a dizzying trip through his musings on mathematics, machines, consciousness, desire, sexuality, transformation and loss, as well as on his own past.”
ESSENTIAL LGBT NOVEL: In illustrating Turing’s life and the suffering he was forced to endure for his sexuality, Murmur mounts a powerful defense of tolerance. Before taking his own life at age 42, Turing was subjected to state-sanctioned chemical castration for living as a gay man. It was only in 2013 that the UK government posthumously pardoned Turing, and in 2017, passed the “Alan Turing law,” an amnesty law that retroactively pardoned men who were similarly convicted for homosexual acts. Curious readers will be fascinated by this intimate portrayal of the man whose name has been lent to both the Turing test and this new law.