Saturday, 14 July 2018

The Barefoot Road

The Barefoot Road is a novel by Vivienne Vermes.

It is set in the mountainous lands of Transylvania.

A young lady is discovered in a dreadful condition, in the mountains that surround a village. She has obviously gone without nutrition for a period of time, as she is a starved and emaciated in appearance. She is also unconscious. 

The villagers realise that she was a member of an ethnic group which had been dispersed from the area many years before. This causes much heart searching by the inhabitants of the village, as they recall their own parts in the ethnic cleansing.

The situation remains in an uneasy status quo until a young man of the village happens to fall in love with the girl. Unfortunately he is already married, which causes tensions in the village to grow and grow.

It is clear that something will happen, and when a child in the village disappears in mysterious circumstances, the situation escalates from tension to outright hysteria and brings the story to a heartstopping and dreadful outcome.

The book is poetic and timeless and shows exactly why Vivienne Verme is an award winning novelist and poet.

It will become a classic of European literature.

It is published by Matador at £8.99.


  1. The book is fabulous! I just finished it and I still have tears in my eyes. Wonderful imagery and poetic prose but best of all is the gripping, haunting story! She is truly a teller of tales. Once I started reading the book, it was impossible to put it down. When I got close to the end, I read slowly, slowly, slowly so that the book would keep on going… It has no specific time or place but old wounds are reopened; tensions rise in the community and mount into hysteria - It is a universal metaphor of our times!

  2. a wonderful book! A gripping plot line, memorable, larger than life characters
    Evocative descriptions of place, country, nature. Ms Vermes is a poet a weaver of words and a great story teller. i highly recommend this novel.

  3. i loved every page ( me who reads very little) after which Ian McEwan seems boring! I especially loved the characters and the vivid descriptions of Transylvania and the magical visions!


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