Reading with Style discussion

31 views
RwS Summer 2020 > 20.5 Russia

Comments Showing 1-18 of 18 (18 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Kate S (new)

Kate S | 6154 comments Read a book set at least 75% in Russia OR a book written by an author born in Russia.

Please use this thread for questions/comments about task 20.5.


message 2: by Bea (new)

Bea | 1601 comments Does anyone have a suggestion for an author born in Russia other than the classics? I have found that I do not like the writings of Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, and their like. Is there a newer writer I might try?


Elizabeth (Alaska) | 12337 comments Boris Akunin, although born in Georgia, sets his mysteries in Russia.

Tom Robb Smith has a series Leo Demidov set in Russia.

Svetlana Alexievich, a Nobel Prize winner, writes narrative nonfiction. I think most of her work is interviews of the Russian people.

Here is GRs Russia shelf. Yes, the top of that is dominated by the classics, but you might be rewarded by scrolling down a bit.

I did a search for Russia on the listopia. It appears they are overpopulated with the classics you wish to avoid. Still, you might find something I didn't notice in the list titles.


message 4: by Beth (new)

Beth Robinson (bethrobinson) | 1109 comments I read and enjoyed The Secret History of Moscow which is fantasy/magical realism and Neil Gaiman plugged as similar to Neverwhere.

And Isaac Asimov was born in Russia and wrote assorted non-fiction as well, of you are not a sci-fi fan.


message 5: by Katy (new)

Katy | 911 comments I haven't read it yet but I'm planning to read Little Failure


message 6: by Bea (new)

Bea | 1601 comments Thanks for the recommends. I just didn't know where to start, and your recommends gives me hope.

BTW, Elizabeth, it turns out that I have a Boris Akunin book on my wishlist (non-owned TBR)! Now to see what I can find in my resources.


message 7: by Connie (new)

Connie G (connie_g) | 1399 comments I enjoyed The Madonnas of Leningrad by Debra Dean which is historical fiction.


message 8: by Joanna (new)

Joanna (walker) | 1445 comments Second the recommendation for the Leo Demidov trilogy. I don't read many spy novels, but I really enjoyed those.


message 9: by Bryony (new)

Bryony (bryony46) | 247 comments Do authors who were born in places that were in Russia or the USSR at the time of their birth count, even if those countries are now independent?

For example:
Mikhail Bulgakov was born in 1891 in Kiev (Ukraine) which was part of the Russian Empire at that time.

Sergei Lukyanenko was born in 1968 in Kazakhstan which was part of the USSR at that time.

Thank you.


Elizabeth (Alaska) | 12337 comments Bryony wrote: "Do authors who were born in places that were in Russia or the USSR at the time of their birth count, even if those countries are now independent?

For example:
Mikhail Bulgakov was b..."


No. But note that the task includes OR setting. Do you have titles in mind?


message 11: by Bryony (new)

Bryony (bryony46) | 247 comments Elizabeth (Alaska) wrote: "No. But note that the task includes OR setting. Do you have titles in mind?"

Ah, of course! I was so preoccupied with looking for Russian authors on my bookshelves that I forgot about the setting. Thank you.

For Sergei Lukyanenko I have Night Watch which appears to be set entirely in Moscow so I think that would work.

And for Mikhail Bulgakov I was looking either at The Master and Margarita (which seems to be set partly in Moscow and partly in Jerusalem, I’m not sure how much is set in each location) or The White Guard (set in Ukraine in 1917 so wouldn’t work).


message 12: by Elizabeth (Alaska) (last edited May 16, 2020 04:06PM) (new)

Elizabeth (Alaska) | 12337 comments Bulgakov might be problematical. I have to admit I set that aside - I think it is well liked, just not for me. Maybe someone else can pop in and let us know if that would work for Russia. (And another idea: you could read it in any case. His name has 7 and 8 letters respectively and there is a task not yet posted for which he'll work.)


message 13: by Valerie (new)

Valerie Brown | 2475 comments It has been 6 years since I read The Master and Margarita , so my memory may be a bit vague, but I think it would fulfill the requirement for Russia. I LOVED it, but it is hard core magic realism.


message 14: by Bryony (new)

Bryony (bryony46) | 247 comments Thanks Valerie, that’s helpful to know and it’s great to hear such a good review of the book. I haven’t read much magical realism but I have generally enjoyed that which I have read, particularly some of Gabriel García Márquez’s books.

And thanks Elizabeth for suggesting other tasks this could fit. I’m not certain yet I’ll get to it over summer, but if I do then it’s good to have a task to count it for.


message 15: by Lagullande (new)

Lagullande | 1029 comments I gave this Laurus by Eugene Vodolazkin 4 stars, Bea.

It might help to know that I like Lit Fic and Historical Fiction.


message 16: by Bea (new)

Bea | 1601 comments Thanks for the recommend, Lagullande. My library has the Boris Akunin book, so I am going to try that one.


message 17: by Heather (new)

Heather (sarielswish) | 722 comments So, places that were considered *part* of Russia at the time and are no longer don't count? Specifically, i'm looking at Midnight in Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World's Greatest Nuclear Disaster.


Elizabeth (Alaska) | 12337 comments Heather wrote: "So, places that were considered *part* of Russia at the time and are no longer don't count? Specifically, i'm looking at [book:Midnight in Chernobyl: The Untold Story of the World's Greatest Nuclea..."

We'll allow that title.


back to top