"Let's face it, so synonymous with the Great Hunger, 1847 was always going to be the big one. Still, what I discovered inside was so tragic, so moving, and so unexpected. I told my publishers from the outset that the story of the Ua Buachalla and their struggle through the famine was too big for one book. I'm so glad they agreed, and extremely proud to share that A Whisper From Oblivion will hit the bookshelves this Sept 14th on Gill Books."

DECLAN O’ROURKE has announced his latest book, A Whisper From Oblivion, will be released to Irish bookshops this Sept 14th on Gill Books! This novel is the sequel to The Pawnbroker’s Reward and the second book of three. The new book, from one of Ireland’s best- loved songwriters sees the real life inhabitants of Macroom and its surrounds land squarely within the explosive eye of the storm that is 1847 of Ireland’s tragic Great Famine.

Please write to [email protected] if you’d like to tell us how excited you are to read A Whisper From Oblivion.

In the meantime, you can pre-order your copy of A Whisper From Oblivion from one of the outlets below!

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Dear friends, Thanks to all who picked up a copy or shared some love for The Pawnbroker’s Reward over the last couple of years. Please keep posting images of your copies and if you can spare a few moments I’d be so grateful of any reviews posted to relevant online sites. DOR

Declan O’Rourke at the launch of The Pawnbroker’s Reward – Whelans, Dublin, Nov 15th, 2021.

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Praise for The Pawnbroker’s Reward

‘O’Rourke displays great subtlety in merging his story with factual information. There is no denying O’Rourke’s storytelling ability and skill at balancing the novel between a battle that wages profit against humanity.’ – John Boyne, The Irish Times

‘Brings the famine to vivid life with passion and heart. I devoured it.’ – Sue Leonard, The Irish Examiner 

‘The Pawnbroker’s Reward is full of heartfelt, lyrical sentences that vividly conjure up the agony of the 1840s in Ireland.’ – Nadine O’Regan

‘The compassion, and empathy, so key to Declan’s songwriting, are qualities very present throughout the novel.’ – Kernan Andrews

‘It’s admirable to see someone take the craft of novel writing seriously.’ – Eilis O’Regan

‘It is such a universal story that nobody could read this anywhere and not be moved by it.’ – Matt Cooper

‘What [Declan] was able to do was craft it into a narrative that makes the past feel like the present.’ – Aoife Barry

‘A tale shaped with the lyricism of a songwriting giant. A powerful and gripping piece of writing from a born storyteller.’ – Joseph O’Connor 

‘Lucid, lovingly-written and lyrical…faithfully captures the horrors of the early months of the Great Hunger.’ – Professor Christine Kinealy

‘Amazing. Based on real people and informed by contemporary records of the time. The research in the book is impeccable.’ – Pat Kenny.

‘A powerful, multi-layered work showing us the famine as it happened through the lens of a single town: Macroom.’ – RTÉ Culture

‘A detailed and evocative telling of one of our nation’s darkest stories. The Pawnbroker’s Reward brings the famine to life and infuses it with a humanity often missing from historical accounts.’ – Ray D’Arcy.

‘Declan is a master storyteller in song and now he’s written a masterful story in The Pawnbroker’s Reward, it captures you from the beginning.’ – Marty Whelan, broadcaster, Lyric FM.

‘An ambitious, moving and quite brilliant piece of work.’ – Pat Carty. 

‘O’Rourke is connecting with our ancestors too. Not with song this time but with this meticulously, lovingly and exhaustively researched account of the Great Famine.…an earnest and fastidious labour of love as it reaches back to the suffering of past generations.’ – Liam Heylin, The Irish Examiner 

‘Full of heart and heartbreak, he resurrects the time of the famine with care and honesty. An original take on the darkest period in Irish history, it is well worth a read.’ – Daniel Seery, Dublin Inquirer