As Dickens and Balzac did for their time, so, John Berger does for ours, rendering the movement of a people and the passing of a way of life in his masterwork, the Into Their Labours trilogy. With Lilac and Flag, the Alpine village of the two earlier volumes has been forsaken for the mythic city of Troy. Here, amidst the shantytowns, factories, and opulent hotels, fading heritages and steadfast dreams, the children and grandchildren of rural peasants pursue meager livings as best they can. And here, two young lovers embark upon a passionate, desperate journey of love and survival and find transcending hope both for themselves and for us as their witnesses.
"Remarkable.... Like all great novelists, all great people, [John Berger] guides his characters and his readers tenderly and with intimate humor. There is the voice of Isaiah and Jeremiah in this book, but also the compassion of a New Testament."