Nominated by:

de Bibliotheek Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Publisher of nominated edition:

Published by Crown Publishing Group, USA

The Barefoot Queen

Ildefonso Falcones      

Translated from the Spanish by Mara Faye Lethem

2016 Longlist

Spain, 1748. Caridad is a recently freed Cuban slave wandering the streets of Seville. Her master is dead and she has nowhere to go. When, by chance, she meets Milagros Carmona—a spellbinding, rebellious gypsy—the two women become inseparable. Caridad is swept into an exotic fringe society full of romance and art, passion and dancing.

But their way of life changes instantly when gypsies are declared outlaws by royal mandate and their world as a free people becomes perilous. The community is split up—some are imprisoned, some forced into hiding, all fearing for their lives. After a dangerous separation, Caridad and Milagros are reunited and join in the gypsies’ struggle for sovereignty against the widespread oppression. It’s a treacherous battle that cannot, and will not, be easily won.

From the bustle of Seville to the theatres of Madrid, The Barefoot Queen is an unforgettable historical fresco filled with characters that live, suffer, and fight for the lives of those they love, and for the freedom they can’t live without.

(from publisher)

About the Author

Ildefonso Falcones is a lawyer and internationally bestselling and award-winning author of Cathedral of the Sea and The Hand of Fatima. With over 7 million copies sold, his work has been translated into more than 40 languages worldwide. He lives in Barcelona with his family.

Librarian’s Comments

The depiction of gypsy life and the morality of the time is very vivid.

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