Josh Ritter has taken time about from his busy musical career to write his first novel. According to the Idaho native and honorary Irishman "It’s about a kind of sweet normal guy from West Virginia. He goes to the first World War and he comes back and he has an angel. And it’s about him and this angel escaping this wildfire for five days. It’s sort of this short little comedy".

To get his fans hooked on the book, entitled 'Bright's Passage', Ritter is offering the first chapter as a free download. A note to his fans reads:

Hey All!

Here's the first chapter to my first novel, Bright's Passage. Wow! It makes me very proud to write that! Right now, I'm sitting on the floor in Penn Station in New York, waiting for a train to Philadelphia, where I'm to play a solo show. There are so many places a story can be told. Over the past year and a half, in airport bars and laundromats, tour buses and kitchens, I've been telling myself the story of Henry Bright and his world. A story that started as a song is now a world inhabited by characters that are still surprising to me. I'm so happy to begin to present that world to others. Great thanks goes, as ever, to my family and my music family, my new friends at the Dial Press, and all of those whose generosity of will made this book possible.

Finally, thanks to all of you for your continued belief in my writing, whatever form it may take. I never forget who it is that makes all of this possible in the end.

As ever, rock on!

'Bright's Passage' is due for release on June 28th. Download Chapter 1 from

Josh Ritter will play Belfast's Mandela Hall on Wednesday April 13th (£20) and Dublin's Vicar St on Friday April 15th (€30), and is also set to release 'Live at the Iveagh Gardens', recorded in Dublin last summer, as a limited edition for Record Store Day, April 16th.