Against the backdrop of the Cold War comes a gripping and deeply moving story of family, love and betrayal.
Lidia is a wilful young girl with an enquiring mind, so was it something she said? Was it something she heard? Or was it her father's dogged resistance to join the Communists that dealt a devastating blow on her tight-knit Bulgarian family.
The war has ended but the Communist fist is slamming down hard and Lidia's father, a respected doctor, is not backward in forecasting his disapproval for the new regime.
He hits the newspaper with the back of his hand. 'Who do they think they are, nominating themselves as our leaders? They're just a bunch of lowbrow blockheads with barely enough brains to wield mops around a latrine.'
From the hallstand he pinches the front of his felt hat, and checks himself in the mirror. With a slight re-adjustment of the brim he picks up his small leather case and waves goodbye. Unbeknown at the time, the image of his farewell would leave an indelible mark. For on that December morning he disappears off a Sofia Street. With no reason given, Lidia's remaining family is forcibly removed from their home and relocated to a remote northern village. Hope is all but lost until a farm worker befriends her. He dreams bigger than she dares imagine. He plans to escape to the West and convinces her to go with him. But freedom comes at a terrible cost. All too soon he awakens feelings she has never felt, and caught up in the passion of the moment, she makes a life changing decision.
As a way to distract the thought of her impending loss, Susan Mimram told her dying father this story of epic proportions. Each night, while the neighbourhood slept she wrote into the small hours of the morning in order to read him a few more pages. As the months rolled on it became a race to finish the final chapter before he was gone forever.
"This is a Cold War survival story set in Bulgaria where violence, struggle and hope coincide. A twist of fate is followed by a series of misfortunes for Lidia and her family who are ordinary people living under extreme circumstances. The author weaves a vivid, eloquent story that captures and holds the reader's attention throughout."
"What a great find and an absolute page-turner This book embraces the tragedy of war and lost love in Bulgaria and is hard to put down. I highly recommend and can't wait to see the next novel from this talented author."
"Susan Mimram's book and her introduction of how she came about writing it is heart warming. It is a wonderfully written human story about a strong Bulgarian woman, her fight for freedom, assimilation and the universal desire for happiness."
"Someone's Listening is the unfolding tale of a woman's journey, filled with yearning and warmth, yet twinged with sadness. A highly enjoyable read."