I am taking part in another blog tour today. I am so happy that there are so many incredible books I get to share with you all. The Barefoot Road is a haunting historical fiction, which I could not put down.
Title: The Barefoot Road
Author: Vivienne Vermes
Author Bio: Vivienne Vermes is a writer and actress of Irish and Hungarian descent who divides her time between Paris and London. She has published four collections of poetry: Sand Woman, Metamorphoses, Passages and When the World Stops Spinning, and has performed her work in festivals throughout Europe. She is winner of the Piccadilly Poets’ award, the Mail on Sunday’s Best Opening of a Novel competition, as well as Flash 500s prize for short prose and the Paragram national competition for best poem and “petite prose”. She has taught creative writing in universities in Transylvania, and runs a writers’ workshop in Paris.
As an actress, she has played roles in a number of French films, including Les Trois Frères, Le Retour and in Les Profs 2 in which she portrayed Queen Elizabeth II. Her voice also warns passengers on the Paris metro to “Mind the gap”.
The Barefoot Road is her first novel.
Synopsis: Vivienne Vermes’ debut novel is a gripping read which will appeal to readers who enjoy historical fiction, thrillers and evocative themes. The book begins with a young woman found, emaciated and unconscious, in the mountains surrounding a village in Transylvania. When it is discovered that she is of an ethnic group which was violently driven out of the regions many years before, old wounds are reopened as the villagers are reminded of their role in the bloodshed.
An uneasy peace is maintained until a young married man falls in love with the girl, and tension begin to rise within the community. The mysterious disappearance of a child causes this tension to mount into hysteria, driving the story to its chilling outcome.
Categories: Historical Fiction, Historical Fantasy
Publication Date: 2nd April 2018
Rating: 4 stars
Content Warnings: n/a
Review: I was so intrigued when I saw the synopsis for The Barefoot Road, I just had to read it. And I am so glad I did. It is so beautifully written and there is a real haunting quality to the story too. I couldn’t put it down and read it in just one day.
I found myself so enchanted by the story and the characters. The writing style was beautiful and there were so many gorgeous quotes woven throughout the text “He moved towards her and kissed the top of her head, smoothing her hair with his hands, as if to make everything the way it should be, and rarely was, except in moments that vanished like the pitter of rain.”
The Barefoot Road details life in a mountain village in such vivid detail it is both beautiful, with it’s sense of community and brutal, with who quickly the mob mentality can overtake a community with devastating results. The events of the plot quickly escalate in the second half of the book, almost to the point of chaos. It is awful to see what people can do to each other.
The wide range of characters evoked all sorts of emotions, and they were all so vivid and well written. It was so heartbreaking to watch as the village unravels and that the innocent acts of children can be used to justify such evil.
The ending of the book was a heartbreaking and haunting as many of the darker moments of the book, and the sense of loss was profound. The Barefoot Road felt like a cautionary about human nature and the depths we can all fall to. The ending fitted so well with that, after all, in reality we do not all get our happily ever after.
If you like the sound of The Barefoot Road, it’s available on Amazon*, and you can find author Vivienne Vermes over on Twitter.
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I received a copy of The Barefoot Road for the purpose of this blog tour, all opinions and words are my own.