Discover the new novel from the author of TikTok sensation My Year of Rest and Relaxation.
In a village in a medieval fiefdom, a motherless shepherd boy finds himself the unlikely pivot in a power struggle that puts faith to a savage test.
Little Marek, the abused and delusional son of the village shepherd, never knew his mother; his father told him she died in childbirth. One of life´s few consolations for Marek is his enduring bond with the blind village midwife, Ina, who suckled him when he was a baby, as she did so many of the village´s children. Ina´s gifts extend beyond childcare: she possesses a unique ability to communicate with the natural world. For some people, Ina´s home in the woods outside of the village is a place to fear.
Among their number is Father Barnabas, the town priest and lackey for the lord and governor, Villiam, whose hilltop manor contains a secret embarrassment of riches. The people´s desperate need to believe that there are powers that be who have their best interests at heart is put to a cruel test by Villiam and the priest, especially in this year of record drought and famine. But when fate brings Marek into violent proximity to the lord´s family, new and occult forces upset the old order. By year´s end, the veil between blindness and sight, life and death, the natural world and the spirit world, will prove to be very thin indeed.