August 27, 2016

Keith Donohue has been praised for his vivid imagination and for evoking “the otherworldly with humor and the ordinary with wonder” (Audrey Niffenegger). His first novel, The Stolen Child, was a national bestseller, and his second novel, Angels of Destruction, was hailed as “a magical tale of love and redemption that is as wonderfully written as it is captivating” (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette). Centuries of June is a bold departure, a work of dazzling breadth and technical virtuosity.

Set in the bathroom of an old house just before dawn on a night in June, Centuries of June is a black comedy about a man who is attempting to tell the story of how he ended up on the floor with a hole in his head. But he keeps getting interrupted by a series of suspects—eight women lying in the bedroom just down the hall. Each woman tells a story drawn from five centuries of American myth and legend in a wild medley of styles and voices.

Centuries of June is a romp through history, a madcap murder mystery, an existential ghost story, and a stunning tour de force at once ingenious, sexy, inspiring, and ultimately deeply moving.


Roanoke Times Back Cover

Lawrence Wayne Markert, Roanoke Times

Donohue’s novel, however, rapidly expands beyond the borders of a traditional mystery and proves to be a wonderful and cleverly integrated mix of mystery, fantasy, comedy and literary fiction.


Rain Taxi Finds Humor in Suspended Animation

Andrew Cleary, Rain Taxi Review of Books

In an important sense, then, Centuries of June is a romp, and though Jack stumbles through it addled with incomprehension, the humor of its suspended animation echoes indeed Beckett’s dark comedy; likewise, the fanciful tales, happy violence, and sensuous, twining language recall the gaiety of Tristram Shandy’s endless diversions, and that earlier novel’s happy, delaying struggle with death’s specter. Unfortunately, Jack seems too slow to keep up with the tales and their allusions. In each interlude between tales he wanders through his house, wondering the same questions about what time it must be, where the cat may have gone, and why, once more, did he find himself brained and dying on the bathroom floor?


Centuries of June is masterful fantasy

Allan Walton, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

It’s become clear with his third novel, “Centuries of June,” that Keith Donohue not only has raced to the forefront of fantasy fiction, but also he may well be its pacesetter.

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