Zone: A Prison Camp Guard's Story
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Zone: A Prison Camp Guard's Story

4.15 of 5 stars 4.15  ·  rating details  ·  426 ratings  ·  4 reviews

Written in Sergei Dovlatov’s unique voice and unmatched style, The Zone is a satirical novelization of Dovlatov’s time as a prison guard for the Soviet Army in the early 1960s. Snapshots of the prison are juxtaposed with the narrator’s letters to Igor Markovich of Hermitage Press in which he urges Igor to publish the very book we’re reading. As Igor receives portions of th

Hardcover, 177 pages
Published September 12th 1985 by Knopf (first published January 1st 1292)
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I'm not sure how I arrived at ordering this book but the library says it's in, so I'll go and pick it up. I thought a goodreader must have recommended it but I see none of my GR friends have read it. Myabe it was another book by him (most likely a short story collection), but the library only had this one..

excellent - review later (I hope...)

I detected a striking similarity between the camp and the outside, between the prisoners and the guards, bet...more
We have read fiction by prisoners in the Soviet Gulag system, such as Alexander Solzhenitsyn's A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich or Varlam Shalamov's Kolyma Tales. Now, with Sergei Dovlatov's The Zone, we have a novel about the lives of Soviet Army guards in the 1960s -- written by a man who worked as one himself -- but among criminal rather than political prisoners.

Dovlatov's wry humor informs this set of short stories, which are interspersed by letters from the author to Igor Markovich Yef...more
Marat M. Yavrumyan
Վերջն է՝ ինչպես Դովլաթովի մյուս բոլոր ստեղծագործությունները։ Այնքան սուր ու դիպուկ են իրավիճակի նկարագրությունները, Դովլաթովին բնորոշ ցինիզմի ու հումորը ընկալումով, որ ծիծաղը երբեմն խեղդում է։ Դովլաթով կարդալ պետք է միանշանակ ու շա՛տ։
Moira Downey
In this structurally inventive, often linguistically inscrutable novel, Dovlatov seeks to massage the traditional Russian prison camp novel by using the guards rather than the interned as his narrative focus. Stories of the horrors of camp life are interposed with meditations on the telling of said stories and the toll exacted on one's moral structure by the experiences described. He also takes care to demonstrate the moral fluidity among those being kept and those doing the keeping, and the rea...more
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