> Skip to content

Truly the best of John Boyne - hilarious, touching and deeply sad The Heart's Invisible Furies is the breakout book Boyne was born to write.

Cyril Avery is not a real Avery or at least that’s what his adoptive parents tell him. And he never will be. But if he isn’t a real Avery, then who is he?

Born out of wedlock to a teenage girl cast out from her rural Irish community and adopted by a well-to-do if eccentric Dublin couple via the intervention of a hunchbacked Redemptorist nun, Cyril is adrift in the world, anchored only tenuously by his heartfelt friendship with the infinitely more glamourous and dangerous Julian Woodbead.

At the mercy of fortune and coincidence, he will spend a lifetime coming to know himself and where he came from – and over his three score years and ten, will struggle to discover an identity, a home, a country and much more.

In this, Boyne's most transcendent work to date, we are shown the story of Ireland from the 1940s to today through the eyes of one ordinary man. The Heart's Invisible Furies is a novel to make you laugh and cry while reminding us all of the redemptive power of the human spirit.

Reviews

The Heart’s Invisible Furies is a deeply engaging and accomplished work. Screamingly funny one minute and heartbreaking the next.

Daily Express

A special read

BBC Radio 4 Front Row

I ran through the whole range of human emotions while reading this brilliant novel. It's a masterpiece.

Cathy Rentzenbrink, author of The Last Act of Love

By turns savvy, witty and achingly sad, Boyne’s latest novel is an epic romp through recent Irish history. This is a novelist at the top of his game.

The Mail on Sunday

Boyne creates lightness out of doom, humour out of desperately sad situations, creating a compelling page-turner… a terrific read.

The Press Association

An epic novel…. Worthy of the great master of the Irish comic novel, Flann O’Brien. The Heart’s Invisible Furies proves that John is not just one of Ireland’s best living novelists but also one of the best novelists of Ireland.

Sunday Express

Written with verve, humour and heart…at its core, The Heart’s Invisible Furies aspires to be not just the tale of Cyril Avery, a man buffeted by coincidence and circumstance, but the story of Ireland itself

Irish Times

Compulsively readable…hard to put down

Irish Independent

John Boyne is best known for his children’s novel The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas. His new novel shows he can write movingly for adults as well… the cast is enormous yet at no point do we lose interest in Cyril.

The Sunday Times

The Heart’s Invisible Furies, by John Boyne, is like an Irish World According to Garp, by which I mean tender, dark, hilarious, heartbreaking—I loved it'

Vogue

Read More

Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9781784161002

    January 2, 2018

    Black Swan

    RRP $19.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Trade Paperback

    9780857523488

    February 27, 2017

    Doubleday

    592 pages

    RRP $32.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Hardback

    9780857523471

    February 15, 2017

    Doubleday

    608 pages

    RRP $45.00

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

Extract

The Good People of Goleen

Long before we discovered that he had fathered two children by two different women, one in Drimoleague and one in Clonakilty, Father James Monroe stood on the altar of the Church of Our Lady, Star of the Sea, in the parish of Goleen, West Cork, and denounced my mother as a whore.

Continue Reading
Article
On Our Desks This Month

What are the team at Penguin NZ reading?

Also by John Boyne

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas
The Boy at the Top of the Mountain
Beneath the Earth
A History of Loneliness
Stay Where You Are And Then Leave
This House is Haunted
Next of Kin
The Terrible Thing That Happened to Barnaby Brocket
Crippen
The Absolutist
The Congress of Rough Riders
The Thief of Time
Noah Barleywater Runs Away
The House of Special Purpose
Mutiny On The Bounty
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

Recommendations

The Handmaid's Tale
To Kill A Mockingbird
Best Laid Plans
Echo Burning
A Gentleman in Moscow
Fool Me Once
Private Delhi
The Girl on the Train
Voyager
Swing Time
The Narrow Road to the Deep North
The Curious Incident of the Dog In the Night-time
The Girls
The Mistress
The Bone Collection
Cold Blood
Fifty Shades Darker
Colombiano
The Trip of a Lifetime
Ready Player One