Reading Envy
Reading Envy
Apr 5, 2022
Reading Envy 244: 2nd Quarter - Russian Non-Fiction
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Lauren W. will be co-hosting this non-fiction quarter of Reading Envy Russia. We share books we have already read and freely recommend, and also chat about the piles and shelves of books we are considering. Let us know your recommendations and where you hope to start in the comments, or join the conversation in Goodreads.

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Reading Envy 244: 2nd Quarter - Russian Non-Fiction

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Books we can recommend:

Memories from Moscow to the Black Sea by Teffi
Tolstoy, Rasputin, Others, and Me: The Best of Teffi by Teffi
Secondhand Timeby Svetlana Alexievich
The Unwomanly Face of Warby Svetlana Alexievich
Last Witnesses by Svetlana Alexievich, translated by Pevear & Volokhonsky
Zinky Boysby Svetlana Alexievich
Voices of Chernobyl (also titled Chernobyl Prayer) by Svetlana Alexievich, translated by Keith Gessen
Other Russias by Victoria Lomasko, translated by Thomas Campbell
The Future is History by Masha Gessen
Never Rememberby Masha Gessen, photography by Misha Friedman
Where the Jews Aren’t by Masha Gessen
Pushkin’s Children by Tatyana Tolstaya
The Slynx by Tatyana Tolstaya
Imperium by Ryszard Kapucinski, translated by Klara Glowczewska
A Very Dangerous Woman: The Lives, Loves and Lies of Russia’s Most Seductive Spy by Deborah McDonald and Jeremy Dronfield
Putin Country by Anne Garrels
Letters: Summer 1926 by Boris Pasternak, Marina Tsvetaeva, and Rainer Maria Rilke
Sovietistan by Erika Fatland
The Commissar Vanishes by David King
Gulag by Anne Applebaum
The Iron Curtain by Anne Applebaum
The Magical Chorus by Solomon Volkov, translated by Antonina Bouis 
Shostaskovich and Stalin by Solomon Volkov
The Tiger by John Vaillant
Owls of the Eastern Ice by Jonathan Slaght
How to Tame a Fox (and Build a Dog): Visionary Scientists and a Siberian Tale of Jump-Started Evolution by Lee Alan Dugatkin and Lyudmila Trut
Please to the Table by Anya von Bremzen
Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking by Anya von Bremzen

Books we are considering:

All Lara’s Wars by Wojchiech Jagielski, translated by Antonia Lloyd-Jones
Gulag Archipelago by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, translated by Eric Ericson (there is a unabridged 1800+ pg, and an author approved abridged version, 400-some pages)
Journey into the Whirlwind by Eugenia Ginzburg, translated by Paul Stevenson, Max Hayward
Kolyma Tales by Varlam Shalamov, translated by John Glad
Riot Days by Maria Alyokhina
Speak, Memory by Vladimir Nabokov
The Life Written by Himself by Avvakum Petrov
My Childhood by Maxim Gorky
Teffi: A Life of Letters and Laughter
by Edythe Haber
Hope Against Hope by Nadezhda Mandelstam, tr. Max Hayward
The Genius Under the Table: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain by Eugene Yelchin
Putin's Russia: life in a failing democracy by Anna Politkovskaya ; translated by Arch Tait.
A Russian diary: a journalist's final account of life, corruption, and death in Putin's Russia by Anna Politkovskaya
Notes on Russian Literature by F.M. Dostoevsky
The Sinner and the Saint: Dostoevsky and the Gentleman Murderer Who Inspired a Masterpiece by Kevin Birmingham
The Most Dangerous Book: The Battle for James Joyce's Ulysses by Kevin Birmingham
Less than One: Selected Essays by Joseph Brodsky
Tolstoy Together by Yiyun Li
The Border by Erika Fatland
Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege of Leningrad by M.T. Anderson Red Plenty by Francis Spufford
Lenin’s Tomb: The Last Days of the Soviet Empire by David Remnick
Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin by Timothy Snyder
The Last Empire: Final Days of the Soviet Union by Serhii Plokhy
The Gates of Europe: A History of Ukraine by Serhii Plokhy
Chernobyl: The History of a Nuclear Catastrophe by Serhii Plokhy
Nuclear Folly: A History of the Cuban Missile Crisis by Serhii Plokhy
Man with the Poison Gun: a Cold War Spy Story by Serhii Plokhy
Babi Yar: A Document in the Form of a Novel by Anatoly Kuznetsov, tr. David Floyd
Manual for Survival: An Environmental History of the Chernobyl Disaster by Kate Brown
Plutopia: Nuclear Families, Atomic Cities, and the Great Soviet and American Plutonium Disasters by Kate Brown
A Biography of No Place: From Ethnic Borderland to Soviet Heartland by Kate Brown
October: The Story of the Russian Revolution by China Mieville
Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible: The Surreal Heart of the New Russia by Peter Pomerantsev
Across the Ussuri Kray by Vladimir Arsenyev, translated by Slaght
An Armenian Sketchbook by Vasily Grossman, translated by Robert and Elizabeth Chandler
A Writer at War: Vasily Grossman with the Red Army by Vasily Grossman
The Road by Vasily Grossman
Stalking the Atomic City: Life Among the Decadent and Depraved of Chernobyl by Markiyan Kamysh
Midnight in Siberia: A Train Journey into the Heart of Russia by David Greene
Mamushka: Recipes from Ukraine & beyond by Olia Hercules
Red Sands by Caroline Eden
Black Sea by Caroline Eden
Tasting Georgia by Carla Capalbo
 

Other mentions:

PEN list of writers against Putin
New Yorker article about Gessen siblings
Thanksgivukkah 2013 
League of Kitchens - Uzbek lesson
League of Kitchens - Russian lesson
Masha Gessen on Ezra Klein podcast, March 2022


Related episodes:

Episode 067 - Rain and Readability with Ruth(iella)
Episode 084 - A Worthy Tangent with Bryan Alexander
Episode 138 - Shared Landscape with Lauren Weinhold
Episode 237 - Reading Goals 2022
Episode 243 - Russian Novel Speed Date 


Stalk us online:

Reading Envy Readers on Goodreads (home of Reading Envy Russia)
Lauren at Goodreads
Lauren is @end.notes on Instagram
Jenny at Goodreads
Jenny on Twitter
Jenny is @readingenvy on Instagram and Litsy

All links to books are through Bookshop.org, where I am an affiliate. I wanted more money to go to the actual publishers and authors. You can see the full collection for Reading Envy Russia 2022 on Bookshop.org.

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