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The Road to Vermilion Lake

3.58  ·  Rating details ·  26 ratings  ·  19 reviews
Librarian Note: Alternate Cover Edition for ISBN-10: 1941861407 / ISBN-13: 9781941861400.

“The novel tells the story of . . . Thomas Neal Tems, a blaster’s assistant and first-aid attendant who lives and works on a construction site beside a glorious, remote lake. The site is being developed by a Swiss company into an ecologically friendly village, and Thomas begins a roman
Paperback, 250 pages
Published July 10th 2017 by Harvard Square Editions
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Briar's Reviews
The Road to Vermilion Lake by Vic Cavalli is an interesting niche novel that felt like a character study.

If I had to describe this book in one word, I would choose: niche. This book isn't some hard hitting Star Wars novel or Notebook styled novel, it is truly in it's own little world. For some people, this book will be incredibly hard to put down and it will be your binge-worthy novel but for others it just won't sit as well. For me, it wasn't as binge worthy as it was for other reviewers (serio
Mar 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
When I first started reading The Road to Vermilion Lake, the title made me smile and what lured me to this read was the ambiance.

I simply could not put this book down and read it in one setting.

In truth, we all have more in common than we realize. Back in the day, many of us, myself included, owned an 8 track quadraphonic that played 4 channels. And to this day, I will happily loop "The Rain Song" by Led Zeppelin, as I head off to Vermilion in my blue Mustang. But that is enough about me.

Tiffany Rose
Mar 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

"The Road to Vermilion Lake" by Vic Cavalli is a novel of of beauty. It is also one of personal growth. I was captivated by the writing, as it was almost poetic at times, but not so much that it took away from the overall storyline.

I'd never heard of Vermilion Lake before this, being I'm from the United States and it is in Canada, but now I definitly want to visit.

"The Road to Vermilion Lake" is a quick read at only 160 pages, but one that will change how you view the world. It is a b
Stephanie Jane
May 06, 2018 rated it liked it
See more of my book reviews on my blog, Literary Flits

I was intrigued by the isolated setting of The Road To Vermilion Lake and liked the first half of this book as we are taken through the Canadian wilderness alongside the road builders. Imagery, such as centuries-old dormant cacti pods being blasted into the sky as thousands of tons of rock is cleared, illustrates the massive endeavour to force a road through just seven miles of terrain, all so a resort can be built on the shores of a lake. Se
Kate Padilla
May 23, 2018 rated it liked it
There was promise at the onset of this novel for what could have been quite a good story. But with too much unnecessary exposition, over-sexuallized descriptions, and characters that lacked depth and consistency, this one fell short of my expectations.

Full review at
Oct 15, 2018 rated it liked it
Originally posted at

TL;DR - The tale of a blossoming romance between two unlikely lovers.


Why I read it…

I was lucky enough to have the author offer me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

The Story…

TW: Contains descriptions of bodily mutilation, sexual content, drug use, and sexual assault.

Thomas Tems is a blaster for a construction firm, building an idyllic residential area around a remote lake. Thomas soon forms a relationship with the archite
Oct 18, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I just couldn’t get into this. Wasn’t for me
Jenna “Meadow”  | The Book of Meadow
*Did Not Finish*
I really wanted to enjoy this book and I tried to make myself keep going, but after reading about half of it I just couldn’t do it any more.

I appreciated the setting of this book with the secluded building site of a new housing development. I felt like when the landscape was described it did a good job of adding to the isolation, loneliness and misery that the main characters are going through. The constant injuries that Tom has to tend to on the workers after different work rel
Jan 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read Cavalli's book, The Road to Vermillion Lake, over the Christmas holidays in an effort to take a break from my doctoral studies in Renaisance Literature and from my duties as a university literature instructor. I was not prepared for the rugged romance that followed! The novel so riveted my attention that I read it in 2 sittings. What a treat to enter into the vast Canadian wilderness with the seemingly mismatched, but paradoxically compatible love interests. The novel came as a breath of ...more
Tony Parsons
Jun 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Fertilio Mts. Vermillion Lake. Thomas Neal Tems (21, narrator, blaster, medic) was hired by H&S Blasting.
Other crew members are: Sam Mayco (Sr. projects mgr.), Joe Bahsta head blaster), Vince Alto (foreman), Dave, Roy Backer (surveyor) & Will New (40+, surveying head).
Thomas (28) had written to Ms. Johnny Nostal (daughter/sister, Catholic, Notre Dame; environmental design) & invited her to a classic car show.

She would be staying at the Gold Motel.
The 2 of them had quite a day & exchanged family
Jun 25, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway thanks to the generosity of the author. It was personally autographed by the author.
It was a great read. The description of the scenery made me feel like I was at the location with the characters in the book.
Very enjoyable!
Janessa Suderman
Mar 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Review of Road to Vermillion Lake

Road to Vermillion Lake, by Vic Cavalli, is an exquisite and poetic novel celebrating the sacred beauty of the Canadian Rockies and, more poignantly, physical intimacy in its purest potential form. Although the plot conclusion wasn’t what I expected, I enjoyed it and would recommend it.

Premise: Tom, a long-time loner, has constantly dreamed of his first love Sally. He’s immersed himself for seven years in work; blasting through the rock to build a road to Vermill
Erik McManus
Apr 02, 2020 rated it it was ok
This book just didn't really do it for me. I had no idea what it was about going into it considering there is no synopsis on the back or inside cover and Goodreads has a quote from someone as the description.

I quickly found out that it is about one man's lust for a woman that he just met and his journey of discovering more about this woman while a budding relationship forms. The woman, however, is a very astute catholic and is slowly converting him to that religion as their relationship grows. Y
Gina R Mitchell
Jul 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
The Road to Lake Vermilion is rather unique. It almost feels like two separate novels.
The first is the story of the blasting team building the road to the lake. It is full of introspection on the psyche of men who put life & limb at risk every day. They think of women, sex, and cars while blasting through tons of rock. There is a bit of mystery introduced through Sally, a woman with ties to the main characters’ past. At this point, I expected the book to continue on its’ way to the end.

Taunya Miller
Jan 18, 2020 rated it did not like it
I won a copy of this book during a giveaway on Library Thing. The views and opinions are my own.

I am one of those people that will finish any book no matter how much I may not like it. This one, no. I couldn't make myself finish it. I've read five star reviews and also reviews from people such as myself. It's evidently one of those books that you either love or you don't. I didn't. I do not like giving a negative review but I wouldn't be an honest reviewer if I only posted the positive.

For me,
Shrikanth Venne
Jun 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
First of all thanks to Vic Cavalli for sending me this book for a honest review. This book is about Thomas Tems who is a construction worker working in the construction of a beautiful city of Vermilion lake. Tom who is in relationship with a catholic girl name Sally Nostal. But when Jhonny Nostal Sally's sister enters thomas life his life is turned upside down as he falls in love with the sister. Before starting the relationship Jhonny tells about her missing sister and says if she is ok with ou ...more
Jennifer Strouth
Feb 20, 2021 rated it liked it
I wanted to really like this book but it just wasn’t my style. Some interesting parts but those moved too quickly, while a lot was just too far fetched. Seemed mainly to be about a man lusting after another woman which is typically just not what I read.

I received a free ebook copy in exchange for an honest review.
Mar 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I won this book as part of a giveaway on another website. Many thanks to the author and publisher. This is an honest review.

I really enjoyed reading this book. It wonderfully integrates modern views with religious perspectives on relationships and marriage. A heart-warming, passionate read.
Sep 09, 2019 marked it as to-read
I never received this book nor The Oysterville Sewing Circle. Please send, thank you
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Vic Cavalli studied the visual arts and photography as a young man, and later in life discovered the potential depth and force of literature. In graduate school, he concentrated on the complex interpenetrating relationships between literature and the visual arts. He has been teaching Creative Writing at the university level since 2001.

Selections from the author's drawings, paintings, and photograp

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“After shaving and showering and throwing on fresh jeans and a white T-shirt, I left my trailer around 8:30 p.m. and headed towards the lake trail. The setting sun was a soft fiery red and the sky was streaked with purple gashes. The surface of the lake was perfect, pinkish-silver calm glass, and as I walked down to the edge of the lake I thought of Johnny’s comment about “our bench.” With the street lights sparkling uphill to my right, and the smooth lake surface on my left, and the brushed concrete trail under me, I felt like I was approaching an intersection point in the setting Johnny had created for Vermilion Lake. It took about ten minutes to see the bench in the distance and a person sitting there.

As I got closer, I saw Johnny, but she looked different. She had come to the bench straight from a late meeting with Will New, and she was dressed in a formal dark-blue business suit with jacket and knee-length skirt. She was wearing a stark-white buttoned blouse and her bare legs were slipped into black high heels. Her red hair was up in an extremely formal looking bun without a strand free. I’d not seen her with glasses the night before and she looked very scholarly. She stood up as I approached, and said, “Hi Tom,” and gave me a gentle hug. As I held her for a second against my chest I could feel her soft breasts through the layers of her suit, and the scent of her hair was beautiful, and then she stepped back and said, “Please sit down. We’ve got a lot to discuss.”

The whole scene felt very different from the previous night. And from this meeting onwards I wouldn’t quite know what to make of Johnny. She was about to become a character composed of incongruous pieces, sometimes strong, sometimes fragile—almost patient-like. It was as if she had fallen apart and some force was in the process of reassembling her as a beautiful mess.”
More quotes…