A new edition of a travel literature classic introduced by Geoff Dyer First 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.
Black Lamb and Grey Falcon was hailed as a masterpiece when it first appeared in 1942 and became, according to her biographer, Victoria Glendinning, 'the central book of her life' - a work not only of history, archaeology, politics, conversation, folklore, prophecy, and the vocation of landscape, but the work in which Rebecca West formulated her views on religion, ethics, art, myth and gender.
First completed as Yugoslavia was plunged into political turmoil, followed by invasion and four years of merciless civil and partisan warfare. It is as relevant today as ever it was.
* It is hard to convey the flavour of a book so rich in observation, history, philosophy, political ideas and ironic humour. The Times * As a book about Yugoslavia it's a kind of metaphysical Lonely Planet that never requires updating. -- Geoff Dyer * It is a brilliant antidote to the disease that would have us believe that these are faraway countries about which we know nothing. Scotsman * 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. Observer * Dame Rebecca, the finest reporter of her generation, saw everything...it is a remarkably easy read. Sunday Telegraph