“A Rose for Sergei” by K. Kidd

This is not at all the sort of book I would normally read, but as a Russianist I was fascinated by the premise.  It’s the true-life account of the author’s relationship with Soviet defector and ex-KGB agent Sergei Kourdakov, one of the more unusual figures in the Cold War.  The book is billed as reading like a romance novel, and it certainly does, capturing the giddiness of young love as the two main figures fall head-over-heels for each other at first sight.  I also found it very interesting to read about the author’s experiences as a young woman making a career for herself in government service in the early 1970s.  This is a bit of a hybrid book, combining as it does the genres of memoir, romance, and cold war thriller, so purists of any of the genres may not know what to make of it, but I found it a quick easy read and an interesting take on one of the hotter periods of the Cold War

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