“I had come to Yugoslavia to see what history meant in flesh and blood.”
A travel literature classic. Introduced by Geoff Dyer: ‘As a book about Yugoslavia it’s a kind of metaphysical Lonely Planet that never requires updating’
A TRAVEL LITERATURE CLASSIC INTRODUCED BY GEOFF DYERFirst published in 1942, Rebecca West’s epic masterpiece is widely regarded as the most illuminating book to have been written on the former state of Yugoslavia. It is a work of enduring value that remains essential for anyone attempting to understand the enigmatic history of the Balkan states, and the continuing friction in this fractured area of Europe.
“It is hard to convey the flavour of a book so rich in observation, history, philosophy, political ideas and ironic humour.”
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“As a book about Yugoslavia it’s a kind of metaphysical Lonely Planet that never requires updating.”
“It is a brilliant antidote to the disease that would have us believe that these are faraway countries about which we know nothing.”
“impossible to put down, both timeless and of its time - a travel book and epic narrative history brimming with passion, anger, scholarship and intuition, hatred and love.”
“Dame Rebecca, the finest reporter of her generation, saw everything…it is a remarkably easy read.”
Rebecca West (1892-1983) was the adopted name of Cecily Isabel Fairfield. Poet, critic and author, West published several novels to widespread acclaim (including The Return of the Soldier and The Judge). Black Lamb and Grey Falcon is widely regarded as her magnum opus.