Books set in the soviet union

(22 Posts)
Colyngbourne Sun 10-Mar-13 13:53:24

Red Plenty - by Francis Spufford

Lilymaid Mon 04-Mar-13 15:08:14

Anything by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (Cancer Ward, Gulag Archipelago, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich). Also Hope Against Hope and Hope Abandoned by Nadezhda Mandelstam (none of these are jolly reading!)

elkiedee Mon 04-Mar-13 14:56:48

Two by writers who lived there:

Life and Fate by Vasily Grossman

Victor Serge's Memoirs of a Revolutionary and his novels - I remember finding Conquered City really gripping. Several of these have been reprinted by NYRB recently.

And a historical by a New Zealand author

Sarah Quigley, The Conductor, set during the Siege of Leningrad during WWII

Helen Dunmore's The Siege and The Betrayal

WafflesandWhippedCream Mon 11-Feb-13 20:47:26

Detective stories by Martin Cruz Smith - think the first one is called Gorky Park.

Death and the Penguin, by Andrei Kurkov

Not fiction, but Man is Wolf to Man, about the Gulag, by Janusz Baldach

And also not fiction, but I would highly recommend Pavlovsk by Suzanne Massey

Takver Mon 11-Feb-13 20:31:32

I Visit The Soviets is slightly bizarre but fascinating - E M Delafield was a journalist who was sent by her editors to Russia in the mid 1930s with the instruction to 'be funny about it'. She travelled pretty widely including spending some time on a collective farm (albeit clearly a 'model' one open to visitors).

dalek Sun 10-Feb-13 22:03:13

The Siege

The Betrayal

Both by Helen Dunmore

tripfiction Sat 09-Feb-13 17:57:08

Child 44 and Snowdrops are excellent.

Also - some different genres:
Sashenka by Simon Montefiore
The Siege by Helen Dunmore
The Holy Thief by William Ryan
Moscow Noir by Natalia Smirnova
To the Hermitage by Malcolm Bradbury (Leningrad, but also set Stockholm)
Moscow Rules by Daniel Silva
The Betrayal by Helen Dunmore (Leningrad)
The Innocent by David Szalay

Thewhingingdefective Fri 08-Feb-13 22:26:58

Life and Fate
Everything Flows

Both by Vasily Grossman

carlajean Fri 08-Feb-13 21:10:37

how about Archangel by Robert Harris?

Waferthinmint Fri 08-Feb-13 17:01:31

Great ideas, thanks so much.

CoteDAzur Fri 08-Feb-13 09:49:52

Ayn Rand's We The Living is also quite powerful, and takes place around the time of the Soviet revolution.

IndridCold Fri 08-Feb-13 09:49:28

Sam Eastland's detective stories are set in Stalinist Soviet Union and are good. The Eye of the Red Tsar is the first one I think.

Also a very funny book by Natalya Lowndes called Chekago is worth a look.

The Master and Margarita is one of my fave books - ever!

Snowdrops is set in the SU too IIRC

CoteDAzur Fri 08-Feb-13 09:48:50

I second Child 44.

DuchessofMalfi Fri 08-Feb-13 08:36:35

How about Dr Zhivago? It's set around the time of the Revolution.

MiddleAgeMiddleEngland Fri 08-Feb-13 08:24:55

Not fiction, but incredibly moving - Irina Ratushinskaya's Grey is the Colour of Hope. She was imprisoned for writing poetry against the state in the 80s, kept in terrible conditions and nearly died. But kept writing poetry on soap, scraps of paper, etc which were smuggled out and later published.

anonymosity Fri 08-Feb-13 01:56:23

Agree about A Day In the Life of Ivan Denisovitch - fabulous.

Helen Dunmore's two novels - The Seige and The Betrayal

FayKnights Thu 07-Feb-13 23:15:10

Came on to add Tom Rob Smith too, excellent books, highly recommend.

TaggieCampbellBlack Thu 07-Feb-13 22:51:39

A day in the life of Ivan Denisovitch.

Read it donkeys years ago but it has stuck with me. Its a day in the life of a man in a sibetian labour camp. Sounds depressing but its excellent.

IThinkOfHappyWhenIThinkOfYou Thu 07-Feb-13 22:49:29

Not revolutionary, but The Bronze Horseman is set during the siege of Leningrad. There is about 50 pages of porn in the middle but the rest is enjoyable. I read it for my book club and everyone like it.

batmanstinks Thu 07-Feb-13 22:43:04

Have you read Master & Margherita?

ZacharyQuack Thu 07-Feb-13 22:42:00

Tom Rob Smith has written a excellent trilogy set in the USSR, featuring a KGB agent who, over the course of the trilogy, becomes increasingly disillusioned with communism. The first book is Child 44.

Waferthinmint Thu 07-Feb-13 22:25:44

Inspired by another thread.

I enjoyed ice road by Gillian slovo (and archangel by harris)

Any other books set in revolutionary Russia or th USSR??

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