Birds of Paradise

This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.
Buy on Amazon Buy on BN.com Buy on Bookshop.org
*This page contains affiliate links, so we may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site at no additional cost to you.
Send NetGalley books directly to your Kindle or Kindle app

1
To read on a Kindle or Kindle app, please add kindle@netgalley.com as an approved email address to receive files in your Amazon account. Click here for step-by-step instructions.
2
Also find your Kindle email address within your Amazon account, and enter it here.
Pub Date Apr 06 2021 | Archive Date Apr 16 2021

Talking about this book? Use #BirdsofParadise #NetGalley. More hashtag tips!


Description

American Gods meets The Chronicles of Narnia in this adult fantasy about the Biblical Adam recovering the lost pieces of the Garden of Eden.
 

Many millennia after the fall of Eden, Adam, the first man in creation, still walks the Earth – exhausted by the endless death and destruction, he is a shadow of his former hope and glory. And he is not the only one. The Garden was deconstructed, its pieces scattered across the world and its inhabitants condemned to live out immortal lives, hiding in plain sight from generations of mankind.
 
But now pieces of the Garden are turning up on the Earth. After centuries of loneliness, Adam, haunted by the golden time at the beginning of Creation, is determined to save the pieces of his long lost home. With the help of Eden's undying exiles, he must stop Eden becoming the plaything of mankind.
 
Adam journeys across America and the British Isles with Magpie, Owl, and other animals, gathering the scattered pieces of Paradise. As the country floods once more, Adam must risk it all to rescue his friends and his home – because rebuilding the Garden might be the key to rebuilding his life.
 
 
American Gods meets The Chronicles of Narnia in this adult fantasy about the Biblical Adam recovering the lost pieces of the Garden of Eden.
 

Many millennia after the fall of Eden, Adam, the first...

Advance Praise

'Birds of Paradise sits in a place between Plato and John Wick, a place which frankly I didn’t know existed. And it is profoundly human too: whoever has ever known loss will resonate with it.'

Francesco Dimitri, author of The Book of Hidden Things

'Birds of Paradise sits in a place between Plato and John Wick, a place which frankly I didn’t know existed. And it is profoundly human too: whoever has ever known loss will resonate with it.'

...


Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9781789094817
PRICE $15.95 (USD)
PAGES 304

Links

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (EPUB)
Send to Kindle (EPUB)

Average rating from 45 members


Featured Reviews

Wow. Just wow.

I’ve read a lot of Neil Gaiman’s work and loved it, so when I saw some reviewers referencing his stories in their reviews of Birds of Paradise, I knew I had to give it a try. I’m so glad I took the chance.

The book opens with a prologue that sets the stage in a way few books do: with emotion that sucker punches you in the gut. Before their fall in the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve loved each other so much, they literally opened their own bodies and exchanged hearts to remain close. Adam’s heart beat inside Eve, and Eve’s heart beat inside Adam.

Fast forward to modern times, and we meet Adam working as a security guard for a famous actress. When he kills a man for coming on to her too strong, he must go underground. In the process, he reconnects with many animal figures from his past who’ve now been anthropomorphized as people. There’s Crow with her missing leg, Owl the vicious destroyer, Rook and Magpie the “brother” lawyers, Butterfly the artist, Crab the crusty curmudgeon with an unmatched engineering brain, Pig the sweet fighter, and more. Each of these characters switches between human and animal forms throughout the story, and it was interesting learning about their lives and how the twists and turns within brought them to this point. Missing, however, is Eve.

An odd elderly couple claiming to be devout Christians appears on the scene, surrounded by a curious band of fellow nudists, and things go south when their life-changing plans are revealed.

What I loved most about Birds of Paradise is Adam’s transformation from a lost man who is so disappointed in his spoiled, greedy children that he can’t stomach the sight of most of them to a person who will do literally anything to protect his friends—the animals he grew up with and tended to so lovingly in Eden—and to find his missing wife Eve. He has no qualms about killing anyone who hurts his precious animal friends, and there are many flashbacks showing the reader the importance of his relationships with each one. Adam is sensitive but also brutal. Kind but sadistic. Honorable but willing to destroy everything and everyone if he’s forced to. So complex. I absolutely loved him.

The ending of this book was stellar, and the last few pages had me wiping my eyes a few times. Okay, the truth is, I bawled like a baby.

The author says in the acknowledgments that he wrote this book over a span of ten years, and it shows. Every scene is perfectly developed, guiding the reader gently by the hand through Adam’s truths, no matter how terrible or cruel or sad. Langmead’s ability to show so much emotion through Adam’s dispassionate eyes is an enviable feat, and he pulled it off with great aplomb.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough. It’s a true masterpiece to rival—perhaps to even surpass—Gaiman’s work.

* I received this ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Was this review helpful?

Readers who liked this book also liked: