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The magic and mystery of Georgia: Hard by a Great Forest, by Leo Vardiashvili, reviewed

Homesick after 20 years in London, Irakli returns to his Caucasian roots and promptly disappears. Can Saba, his youngest son, track him down against the odds?

3 February 2024

9:00 AM

3 February 2024

9:00 AM

Hard by a Great Forest Leo Vardiashvili

Bloomsbury, pp.325, 16.99

In my drafts folder there languishes an email to The Spectator pitching a letter from a then-forthcoming trip to Georgia. That was, alas, the spring of 2020. So when I saw Leo Vardiashvili’s debut novel billed as ‘a winding pursuit through the magic and mystery of returning to a lost Caucasian homeland’, I leapt at the vicarious travel opportunity.

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