Sunday, May 12, 2024

#23: Hard By A Great Forest by Leo Vardiashvili

A young man sees both his father and then his brother go back to the country of Georgia in search of family; when he loses track of both of them, he reluctantly follows in Leo Vardiashvili's Hard By A Great Forest.

Our protagonist ends up following a cryptic trail of clues left by his brother that includes poetic graffiti and scraps of their father's autobiographical play.  Loose in this troubled, depleted country, he deals with everything from escaped zoo animals to the talkative ghosts of lost family members.  

Vardiashvili and his family escaped from Georgia after the fall of the Soviet Union, so he is writing what he knows, and it is compelling throughout.  I thoroughly enjoyed this outing and would recommend it.

I read this from the Henry County-New Castle Public Library in New Castle, Indiana.