Probably the Russian literature event of the year in the English-speaking world has been the publication of the English translation of Vasily Grossman’s “Stalingrad,” the first part of his two-part series about the battle of Stalingrad that concludes with “Life and Fate.” Me reading “Life and Fate” for my PhD comps while camping out on […]Read more "“Stalingrad” by Vasily Grossman, Translated by Robert Chandler"
Bloody Creek Murder I’ve been following along the Winston Radhauser series since the beginning, and have been enjoying it more and more. In this, its sixth installment, the author does a particularly excellent job of combining mystery with family drama. The mixture both brings out the pathos of the interpersonal situation the characters find themselves […]Read more "“Bloody Creek Murder” by Susan Clayton-Goldner #Mystery #BookReview #NewRelease"
Fasten your seatbelts, Russianists: it’s about to get weird. Well, maybe no weirder than usual for literature of this period. Russian literature of the early 20th century was gloriously, insanely bizarre. Writers were flying their freak flag high, and reveling in it. “Beyond Tula” is a case in point. Although in fact, it’s no weirder […]Read more "“Beyond Tula: A Soviet Pastoral” by Andrei Egunov-Nikolev"
I think most of us horse people have harbored fantasies of taking off across country on horseback. John Egenes actually did it. “Man and Horse” is the story, told by John himself, of how he, as a callow 24-year-old, and his Quarter Horse Gizmo, as an even more callow 4-year-old, rode from California to Virginia […]Read more "“Man and Horse” by John Egenes"
The popularity of post-apocalyptic fiction is an interesting facet of the current literary landscape. Why this? Why now? Some aspects of it are self-explanatory. It’s the perfect way to set the adolescents in a YA novel free from adult/parental restraints, in a kind of modern desert island scenario. In a time when desert islands are […]Read more "“Some Fine Day” by Kat Ross"
“The Daemoniac” is a venture into a new genre by epic fantasy author Kat Ross. It is, as it says in the subtitle, a Gaslamp Gothic story, meaning set in the late Victorian era. 1888, to be precise, shortly after Sir Arthur Conan Doyle published “A Study in Scarlet,” and shortly before Jack the Ripper’s […]Read more "“The Daemoniac” by Kat Ross"
In “Rock, Paper, Scissors,” we meet a new Russia: one that stands with one foot in the recent Soviet past, one foot in the more distant past of Pushkin and Lermontov, and, well, a third foot in the Millennial post-Soviet present. And maybe a fourth foot in the West. Like Chekhov (and Bulgakov), Maxim Osipov […]Read more "“Rock, Paper, Scissors, and Other Stories” by Maxim Osipov"
Convenience Store Woman I stumbled upon “Convenience Store Woman” while perusing audiobook deals. Since I’m always interested in finding new Asian authors to read/listen to, I snapped it up. And boy, am I glad I did so. “Convenience Store Woman” tells the story of Keiko Furukura, a woman who’s never managed to fit into society. […]Read more "“Convenience Store Woman” by Sayaka Murata #JapaneseLiterature #LiteraryFiction #Audiobook #LiteratureinTranslation"
The Budapest Artists’ Club “The Budapest Artists’ Club” takes place over two separate trips to Budapest, one on the brink of the new millennium, one almost twenty years later. In her first trip to Budapest, Laura loses her boyfriend but gains musical skills, and is caught up in a plot to switch out a viola […]Read more "“The Budapest Artists’ Club” by Claire Doyle #BookReview #LiteraryFiction #Hungary #Budapest"
The Night Circus I’d heard about “The Night Circus” for a while before I finally got around to reading it. And when I first started it, I wasn’t sure if I actually liked it or not. But by the end, not only had I warmed to it, I was enthralled by it. It’s a strange, […]Read more "“The Night Circus” by Erin Morgenstern"