Two Ravens Press, August 2007
On the second of August 1980 at 1pm, a bomb placed under a chair in the second class waiting room of the international railway station in Bologna exploded, resulting in the deaths of eighty-five people. Despite indictments and arrests no convictions were ever secured.
Exactly a year before the bombing a young British couple disembarked at the station and walked into town. He – pale-blue eyes, white collarless shirt, baggy green army surplus trousers with anarchy and peace written on the knees, a small, almost coffin shaped case with a brass handle in his left hand. Twenty yards behind him, the woman whom, in a year or two, he will marry, then eventually abandon, to almost everyone’s relief. He is Don, she Julia. Within twenty fours she’ll leave for home – with the rest of their money. He will wander into a bar called The Nightingale and meet a labyrinthine world of extreme politics and terrorism. More than twenty years later their daughter Rosie, as naïve as her father was before her, will return to the city. Both Don and his past will follow.
Praise for The Nightingale
Nightingale is a gripping and intelligent novel… Full of authentic detail and texture, it is written with clarity and precision. Peter Dorward tells this tragic story with huge confidence and verve
Imagine Graeme Greene in ‘entertainment’ mode, without the Catholicism. Nightingale is literate, emotionally intelligent, humane, passionate – and a page-turning read. From its level of energy and accomplishment I sense there are plenty more novels in Peter Dorward. I greatly look forward to reading them
Winner of the Canongate Prize