At college in 1980s Luton, Robbie Goulding, an Irish-born teenager, meets the elusive Fran Mulvey, an orphaned Vietnamese refugee. Together they form a band. Joined by cellist Sarah-Therese Sherlock and her twin brother Sean on drums, The Ships in the Night set out to chase fame. But the story of this makeshift family is haunted by ghosts from the past.
Spanning 25 years, The Thrill of it All rewinds and fast-forwards through an evocative soundtrack of struggle and laughter. Infused with blues, ska, classic showtunes, New Wave and punk, using interviews, lyrics, memoirs and diaries, the tale stretches from suburban England to Manhattan’s East Village, from Thatcher-era London to the Hollywood Bowl, from the meadows of the Glastonbury Festival to a wintry Long Island, culminating in a Dublin evening in July 2012, a night that changes everything.
A story of loyalties, friendship, the call of the muse, and the beguiling shimmer of teenage dreams, this is a warm-hearted, funny and deeply moving novel for anyone that’s ever loved a song.