The Three Sunrises by Edward Mullaney


408 pages
ISBN 13: 978-0-9906020-2-6
Released in June 2015

Read an excerpt

Read an interview with Edward at Electric Literature.

Vol. 1 Brooklyn published “The Holy Colors: a Preface to The Three Sunrises,” an essay by Edward about how the book covers in the trilogy reflect on the writing.

Here’s a review at Entropy.

And, of course, read the comic extra at Real Pants, in which his beloved characters sit on the stoop, reading his book.

The Three Sunrises is a collection of three novellas, and is the final installment of Edward’s trilogy, which began with If I Falter at the Gallows and Figures for an Apocalypse.

The first novella, Legion, is about a man who lives and works in a city during the time in his life when his mother dies.

The second novella, The Book of Numbers, is about two men who are lost in a desert and who are trying to make their way out of the desert.

The third, The Three Sunrises, is about a man who, walking one morning, sees his doppelganger, and who then follows this doppelganger around the city for three consecutive days.

Edward is also the author of the comic strip Rachel and Ben.

Additional information

Weight16 oz
Dimensions8.25 × 5.5 × 1.5 in
Advanced Praise

I have never read a book like this before. It is special and sad and calm and engaging and sometimes boring in a pleasant, but real way, and it is nightmarishly imaginative. It’s a little like Beckett’s Waiting for Godot but with much less companionship and subsequent discourse for the protagonists, and much more Carlos Casteneda-like treks into nightmarish human interiors and usually-invisible realms and dimensions; it’s a little like Auster’s New York Trilogy but with less noir-feel, more burning-hot-sun-over-a-barren-planet-sci-fi-feel; it’s a bit like Kafka (where the protagonist’s sense of duty to some social machine or stubborn sense of his own character keeps him moving onward despite the clear futility of this, the capital A Absurdity of this) but with more constant revising of the narration of the futile onwardness on the part of the speaker. Even the book’s title suggests that the writer is giving himself three tries to get it right, tell it right, even though getting it right might not make a shred of difference, ultimately. It’s still very dear to see that someone wants to try–that someone writing, foremostly, about isolation, alienation and exile is still trying to find listeners and to do well for them.
—Hannah Gamble, author of Your Invitation to a Modest Breakfast (National Poetry Series selection)
Beautifully written and formally restless, the three novellas in Edward Mullany’s  The Three Sunrises resonate with Beckett and Kafka. And like all great works of art they are relentless in their investigation into the unknowable mysteries of existence and “the darkness that exists within the light.”
—Robert Kloss, author of The Alligators of Abraham andThe Revelator
In The Three Sunrises, Edward Mullany explores the tension between the flat tedium of urban America and the wasteland of the apocalypse. The mundane world of the narrators is permeated by the uncanny: a sun that won’t set, a cast of doppelgangers, storms of screwdrivers and blood, a flock of disappearing pigeons, and molting, speaking severed heads. In a fugue-like structure, these novellas circle around the question, How does one live? To read Mullany is to find oneself in the disorienting space of Auster, Murakami, and Kafka—it is to come to terms with the quiet boredom—and terror—of the surveilled life, the “digitized, ruined world.”
—Sasha West, author of Failure and I Bury the Body (National Poetry Series selection)