The Final Revival of Opal & Nev: A Novel Audiobook, by Dawnie Walton Play Audiobook Sample

The Final Revival of Opal & Nev: A Novel Audiobook

The Final Revival of Opal & Nev: A Novel Audiobook, by Dawnie Walton Play Audiobook Sample
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Read By: Bahni Turpin, Dennis Boutsikaris, Gabra Zackman, James Langton, Janina Edwards, Steve West, André De Shields, Full Cast Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Listen Time: at 1.0x Speed 8.83 hours at 1.5x Speed 6.63 hours at 2.0x Speed Release Date: March 2021 Format: Unabridged Audiobook ISBN: 9781797118505

Quick Stats About this Audiobook

Total Audiobook Chapters:


Longest Chapter Length:

67:56 minutes

Shortest Chapter Length:

49 seconds

Average Chapter Length:

23:25 minutes

Audiobooks by this Author:


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Publisher Description

An electrifying novel about the meteoric rise of an iconic interracial rock duo in the 1970s, their sensational breakup, and the dark secrets unearthed when they try to reunite decades later

Opal is a fiercely independent young woman pushing against the grain in her style and attitude, Afro-punk before that term existed. Coming of age in Detroit, she can’t imagine settling for a 9-to-5 job—despite her unusual looks, Opal believes she can be a star. So when the aspiring British singer/songwriter Neville Charles discovers her at a bar’s amateur night, she takes him up on his offer to make rock music together for the fledgling Rivington Records.

In early seventies New York City, just as she’s finding her niche as part of a flamboyant and funky creative scene, a rival band signed to her label brandishes a Confederate flag at a promotional concert. Opal’s bold protest and the violence that ensues set off a chain of events that will not only change the lives of those she loves, but also be a deadly reminder that repercussions are always harsher for women, especially black women, who dare to speak their truth.

Decades later, as Opal considers a 2016 reunion with Nev, music journalist S. Sunny Shelton seizes the chance to curate an oral history about her idols. Sunny thought she knew most of the stories leading up to the cult duo’s most politicized chapter. But as her interviews dig deeper, a nasty new allegation from an unexpected source threatens to blow up everything.

Provocative and chilling, The Final Revival of Opal & Nev features a backup chorus of unforgettable voices, a heroine the likes of which we’ve not seen in storytelling, and a daring structure, and introduces a bold new voice in contemporary fiction.

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“This engaging audiobook is narrated with energy and style…Janina Edwards, who plays S. Sunny Curtis, the central character, is convincing, thoughtful, and measured. Both Bahni Turpin (Opal) and James Langston (Nev) give their idiosyncratic ’70s rockers nuanced portrayals. Gabra Zackman and Dennis Boutsikaris enliven the proceedings with well-delivered New York accents…It is often laugh-out-loud funny—a grand listening experience. Winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award.”

— AudioFile 


  • “ It’s a packed time capsule that doubles as a stick of dynamite.”

    — New York Times Book Review
  • “An utterly fresh take on finding one’s voice, on systemic racism and sexism, and on freedom of expression.”

    — O, The Oprah Magazine
  • “A rock ‘n roll novel for the ages.”

    — Literary Hub
  • “Walton’s debut novel is so lucidly envisioned, readers will wish that YouTube videos existed of the fictional Opal & Nev.”

    — Booklist (starred review)
  • “One of the most ​immersive novels I’ve ever read.”

    — Ta-Nehisi Coates, #1 New York Times bestselling author
  • “Lovely and lyrical; a warm and wonderful intersection between journalism and fiction.”

    — Kiley Reid, New York Times bestselling author


  • A Good Morning America Selection
  • A BookPage Top Pick of Audiobooks
  • An Entertainment Weekly Best Book of 2021
  • An Esquire Magazine Best Book of the Year
  • A Reader’s Digest Pick of the Year
  • An NPR Best Book of the Year
  • One of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2021
  • One of Barack Obama's Favorite Books of the Year
  • A Philadelphia Inquirer Best Book of 2021 Pick
  • Winner of the 2022 Audie Award for Best Fiction Narration 
  • Winner of an AudioFile Earphones Award

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About Dawnie Walton

Dawnie Walton is a fiction writer and journalist whose work explores identity, place, and the influence of pop culture. Previously she worked as an executive-level editor for magazine and multimedia brands including Essence, Entertainment Weekly, Getty Images, and Life.

About the Narrators

Bahni Turpin, winner of numerous AudioFile Earphones Awards and several prestigious Audie Awards for her narrations, was named a “Golden Voice” by AudioFile magazine in 2019. Publishers Weekly magazine named her Narrator of the Year for 2016. She is an ensemble member of the Cornerstone Theater Company in Los Angeles. She has guest starred in many television series, including NYPD Blue, Law & Order, Six Feet Under, Cold Case, What about Brian, and The Comeback. Film credits include Brokedown Palace, Crossroads, and Daughters of the Dust. She is also a member of the recording cast of The Help, which won numerous awards.

Dennis Boutsikaris is a two-time OBIE award winner. He has received five Audie Awards and seven Golden Earphone Awards for his work in over 100 audiobooks and was voted one of the Best Voices of the Year by AudioFile magazine. He has appeared in numerous Broadway, television, and film roles. He played Mozart on Broadway in Amadeus and has appeared on television shows including Shameless, The Good Wife, House M.D., Grey’s Anatomy, ER, and Law & Order.

Gabra Zackman is an actress, author, and narrator who has won several AudioFile Earphones Awards. She was educated at Northwestern University. A classically trained actress, she has appeared in theaters all over the country as well as on film and television.

James Langton, an Earphones Award–winning narrator, trained as an actor at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and later as a musician at the Guildhall School in London. He has worked in radio, film, and television, also appearing in theater in England and on Broadway. He is also a professional musician who led the internationally renowned Pasadena Roof Orchestra from 1996 to 2002.

Janina Edwards, an Earphones Award–winning narrator, is a native of Chicago and a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts acting program. Her 2016 performance of Voice of Freedom was a finalist for the Audie Award.

Steve West, the winner of multiple Earphones Awards for narration, is an international actor who has starred on London’s prestigious West End stage, including productions of Mamma Mia! and Oh, What a Night! He is widely known for his television and film work in both the United States and the UK, and he has performed for Queen Elizabeth II at Buckingham Palace. He hosts his own television show for the UK live from Los Angeles.

Zondervan, part of HarperCollins Christian Publishing, is a world leading Bible publisher and provider of Christian communications. For more than eighty years, Zondervan has delivered transformational Christian experiences through its bestselling Bibles, books, curriculum, academic resources, and digital products. The company’s products are sold in multiple formats, worldwide in more than sixty countries, and translated into nearly two hundred languages.