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Olga's Story: Three Continents, Two World Wars and Revolution--One Woman's Epic Journey Through the Twentieth Century
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Olga's Story: Three Continents, Two World Wars and Revolution--One Woman's Epic Journey Through the Twentieth Century

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  73 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
When Canadian journalist Stephanie Williams set out to discover her Russian grandmother’ s long-lost history, what she unearthed was this stunning, sprawling portrait of a life lived on the grand stage of the 20th century.

Born in remote Siberia in 1900, Olga Yunter was the youngest of five children. As a teenager during the Revolution, she was a courier and arms-runner fo
Hardcover, 358 pages
Published December 18th 2007 by Doubleday (first published 2005)
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Nov 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Readers who love Russian History
Recommended to Dem by: Good Reads Recommendation
Shelves: war
A remarkable account of Olga and her family's life from 1900 in a remote frontier post in Southern Siberia.

I love Russian history and love the " Good reads book recommendations" as I am always finding something new to read. I especially loved this book as there are so many historical facts dates and interesting places mentioned and yet the story flows like fiction and this kept me engrossed in the book.

This is a an excellent description of Russian life and the terror of revolution and excile. Th
Mar 13, 2009 rated it it was ok
Wasn't at all as interesting and gripping as it could have been. The first 200 pages were muddled and kept going from here to there with ahrdly any flow. The last 250-300 pages were good and interesting. Not something i would recommend.
Oct 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
this is a fascinating story of Olga's life and history from Siberia, via China to the UK with the Russian revolution, WWI and WWII. Especially interesting as my maternal great grandmother and grandmother had a very similar experience....from Latvia, via Odessa, the TransSiberian railway into grandmother married an Englishman there and lived in China until 1940 or so...she was captured by the Japanese and spent some years as a prisoner in the Phillipines before being liberated by the A ...more
Laura Edwards
Mar 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: russian-history
Very interesting read. Once the revolution begins, the pace really picks up. Very interesting, tragic and inspiring. I was very sad to find out that Olga and Lydia never saw or contacted one another again after 1933. I can only imagine the hardships Lydia endured. Olga's were bad enough. If you are a fan of the Kate Furnivall "Russian Concubine" series, you might like this book, though it is non-fiction. The kind of book which makes me count my blessings once I've finished. I definitely recommen ...more
Jul 09, 2015 rated it liked it
what an amazing job this author accomplished in researching and recreating her maternal grandmother's life and embedding it within an engaging narrative.

from a privileged childhood in a remote Siberian outpost, Olga experiences WWI and the Russian Revolution, fleeing the country for safety and leaving behind all she knows and loves, including her family. and with WWII, a similar flight for safety from her home in Tientsin, China to Canada and later from Shanghai to England.

this is the story of r
Preston Fleming
Jul 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Beautifully detailed description of life in pre-revolutionary Russia, the Russian Civil War and its aftermath from the perspective of someone lucky enough to escape. Olga was an ordinary woman who led an extraordinary life, having "lost everything" three times: when the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia, when the Japanese invaded Manchuria, and when the Communists took over China. One can learn much about life from this honestly told story, masterfully and lovingly crafted by Olga's granddaughte ...more
Erma Odrach
Jul 04, 2009 rated it really liked it
I found this book compelling. It's about the life of the author's grandmother, Olga Yunter, and how she survived two world wars and revolution in the first half of the 20th century. Born in Siberia in 1900, Olga was witness to the Russian Revolution of 1917, the Japanese invasian of China during WWII, and finally the communist takeover of China in the late 1940's. It's a bio filled with history and drama and poignantly written.
Apr 16, 2012 rated it liked it
Well written book, full of history of the world wars. I found the history heavy at times but fascinating too. Olga's tenacity throughout her life is encouraging. The characters are well developed and there is even a family tree and map at the beginning to keep track of everyone - and the complicated names. I would recomend it but not a quick read.
Feb 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
Wow what a story. I have to say that it was slow to start for me and I found some of the description of what was happening in Siberia/Russia at the start a bit slow and in some respects not detailed enough/the history wasn't well described, but the story really came to life when she moved to China. A fascinating biography through Russia and China in the 20th century - well worth a read.
Jun 25, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, history
I loved this book. It took me so long to read it, but once I got going, it was wonderful. I'm just so fascinated by the idea that one woman could have been involved and experienced through her immediate family with two world wars, two communist revolutions, and lived on three continents. This is a cool story.
Jan 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This narrative does indeed read like a novel. Olga story is extraordinary. I was amazed at Olga's life and her granddaughters talent and passion is she pieced the story together. I'll read it again for the details of revolution, war and exile.
Dec 02, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful epic story about one woman's experiences through two wars and life in Siberia. Another perspective to WW2. Better than fiction.
Apr 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
I learned plenty about Siberia and did not realise that the Russians had to flee to China and live there to try and escape the communistic regimes take-over. Good read.
Ricardo Viana

Um relato surpreendente sobre a saga de uma brava mulher em um dos períodos mais conturbados da história.
Jul 30, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Remarkable journey
William Smith
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Around the World: Russia - Chrissie Recommends Olga's Story 3 13 Sep 24, 2011 10:49PM