Rozzer's Reviews > Life and Fate

Life and Fate by Vasily Grossman
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's review
May 26, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: russia, gone, reviewed, fiction

In some long lives (like mine) people read huge quantities of print, stuffing themselves with books for decades the way one of these trained experts eats 62 hot dogs (on buns) in ten minutes at the annual Coney Island food fest. And thus it comes about that someone like me can scroll through lists of books (like those on "Goodreads") and see large numbers of things they've read but which they can no longer remember (in addition, of course, to the huge numbers of books that they do indeed remember). So we come to Vasily Grossman. One of my sub-specialties has always been Soviet literature and history. Not Russian, but Soviet. (You can't imagine how strange it is for some of us oldsters to continually re-conceive of the USSR as long in the past.) In fact, I still have this book on my shelves (which must continually be pruned to make space for the new). It was a good book, yes. But for the life of me I can't remember any of the characters, the plot or the action. I still remember all of Bulgakov. I still remember all of Ilf and Petrov. Not to mention others. But of Life and Fate nothing is left in the mental cupboard. It's a good book. You should read it!
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