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Czars: Russia's Rulers for Over One Thousand Years
James P. Duffy
0760726736
February 2002
Hardcover
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Russia : People and Empire, 1552-1917, Enlarged Edition

0674781198


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From Library Journal
Although at first blush, Hosking's book may seem like just another surey of Russian history, it is in fact much more. The well-regarded Hosking (deputy director, Univ. of London's School of Slavonic and Eastern European Studies) has applied his nearly encyclopedic knowledge of Russia's past to the question of how and why the Russians never developed a sense of nation. He argues that the Russian monarchy and aristocracy were always more interested in building an expansive empire than in promoting the belief in nationhood, something understood by the powerless peasantry. The expensive and inefficient bureaucracy that emerged over the centuries weighed against any possibility of community, and in the end this tottering edifice was unable to withstand the cataclysm of World War I. Hosking has brought a powerful...


Crime and Punishment
Fyodor M. Dostoevsky
0553211757
Oct 1996
Paperback
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Book Review
The talented Alex Jennings creates an atmosphere of gripping psychological tension and brings a variety of characters to life in this new audio edition of a crime classic. When the student Raskolnikov puts his philosophical theory to the ultimate test of murder, a tragic tale of suffering and redemption unfolds in the dismal setting of the slums of czarist, prerevolutionary St. Petersburg. While Jennings's adept repertoire of British accents works to demonstrate the varying classes of characters, it occasionally distracts the listener from the Russian setting. However, Dostoyevsky's rendering of 18th-century Russia emerges unscathed, bringing the dark pathos (such as wretched poverty and rampant suffering) to life. (Running time: 315 minutes; 4 cassettes) --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition....


The Royal Diaries: Catherine, The Great Journey, Russia, 1743
Kristiana Gregory
0439253853
December 2005
Hardcover
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From School Library Journal
Grade 4-7 This novel is written from the viewpoint of Princess Sophie Augusta Fredericka of Anhalt-Zerbst, who later became Catherine the Great. The diary opens with an entry dated August 7, 1743, when Sophie is 14. Her mother obsesses over marrying her into a prestigious family. When the studious and rather plain-looking teen has an opportunity to marry Peter, Grand Duke of Russia, she must face the scrutiny of critical Empress Elizabeth. In her diary, Sophie talks about her home situation and recounts the hardships of travel to Russia, her efforts to please the empress, and her engagement. Gregory's strong characterizations bring the historically grounded figures to life. Events convey the difficulties of Russian life during 1743-1745. At first slow moving, the plot picks up speed when Sophie meets the...


Lonely Planet Russia & Belarus (Lonely Planet Russia and Belarus)

1741042917


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Crime and Punishment
Fyodor Dostoyevsky
074348763X
May 2004
Paperback
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Book Review
The talented Alex Jennings creates an atmosphere of gripping psychological tension and brings a variety of characters to life in this new audio edition of a crime classic. When the student Raskolnikov puts his philosophical theory to the ultimate test of murder, a tragic tale of suffering and redemption unfolds in the dismal setting of the slums of czarist, prerevolutionary St. Petersburg. While Jennings's adept repertoire of British accents works to demonstrate the varying classes of characters, it occasionally distracts the listener from the Russian setting. However, Dostoyevsky's rendering of 18th-century Russia emerges unscathed, bringing the dark pathos (such as wretched poverty and rampant suffering) to life. (Running time: 315 minutes; 4 cassettes) --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition....


Russia!
James Billington
0892073292
November 2005
Hardcover
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Book Description
Building upon 20 years of groundbreaking exhibitions of Russian avant-garde art--including The Great Utopia: Russian and Soviet Art 1915-1932 (1992) and Kazimir Malevich: Suprematism (2003), among others--the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum presents this blockbuster show, which demonstrates that Russia's contributions to world art history extends far beyond the early 20th century. Like the exhibition, this catalogue explores the vast and complex phenomenon embodied by the word "Russia" through the lens of the masterworks of Russian art from the 12th century to today, as well as art from the world-class collections amassed by Russian tsars and merchants from the 18th through the 20th centuries. The remarkable and interconnected history of Russian art and Russia's most important collections over nine centuries includes...


Nikolai, the Only Bear

0399238840


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From School Library Journal
PreSchool-K–Nikolai, the sole bear in a Russian orphanage, doesn't fit in. Because he growls rather than talks and doesn't always "play nice," he has remained in the institution for three years. An American couple, in search of a youngster to love, visits the children's home and becomes acquainted with the cub. The bearded man has the ability to communicate in Bearspeak, while his wife makes Nikolai feel "soft-bearish" inside. All ends happily when the three leave Russia to become a family in the States. Pale tan, brown, and green dominate the soft-hued paintings, and the adults and children are all short with round heads and triangular noses. Read this well-written, attractively laid out bookalong with Eliza Thomas's The Red Blanket (Scholastic, 2004) for tales of cross-cultural...


Alexander II
Edvard Radzinsky
074327332X
Oct 2005
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
It's difficult to reform Russia, as popular historian Radzinsky shows in this lively examination of the czar best known for emancipating the serfs in 1861. Viewed as the most liberal of Russia's 19th-century czars, Alexander II (1818–1881) came to power in 1856 with the idea of bringing Russia into the modern age. But as Radzinsky (The Last Tsar) shows, his liberal reforms brought him nothing but trouble. Alexander came under attack from the right for being too liberal, and the left for not going far enough. He also had to curtail his reforms when faced with the need to fight foreign enemies. Radzinsky focuses much of the latter half of the book on the rise of left-wing populist movements—the book covers in depth the intellectual currents that swirled around Russia during Alexander's reign. Some...


The Cold War : A New History
John Lewis Gaddis
1594200629
December 29, 2005
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. If it's difficult to imagine a history of the Cold War that can be described as thrilling, that should add more luster to Yale historian Gaddis's crown. Gaddis, who's written some half-dozen studies of the Cold War, delivers an utterly engrossing account of Soviet-U.S. relations from WWII to the collapse of the U.S.S.R. The ideological clash between democratic capitalism and communism predated the war, of course, but the emergence of nuclear weapons created a new political situation. Suddenly, it was easy to imagine total war that might destroy not only the enemy but also the victor. Gaddis assesses what he sees as the positive contributions Thatcher, Reagan and Pope John Paul II made to furthering the disintegration of the U.S.S.R. and concludes with a sympathetic portrait of Gorbachev; his...


A Stranger to Myself: The Inhumanity of War: Russia, 1941-44
Willy Peter Reese
0374139784
November 2005
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
Sometimes lyrical, this memoir by a German youth who miraculously survived four tours of duty on the Russian front during WWII—he died on his fifth deployment—is a significant historical document. It is also a laborious and overwrought cacophony of Wagnerian proportions. Reese, who was a 20-year-old bank clerk in 1939 when he was first drafted, inhabits many different worlds, all of them conflicting. Despite Schmitz's assertion that Reese was "no Nazi," he was, like the vast majority of German youths of the time, deeply imbued with Nazi ideology and experienced the war as a sort of sacrament. Duty, abdication and heroism are just some of his motifs. Reese sees himself as a poet deciphering the human condition, but mostly he is just a soldier who plays his part in the atrocities—often...


Cry from the Deep
Ramsey Flynn
0066211719
Dec 2004
Bargain - Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
A gripping and gruesome tale, this book is a superb account of the loss of the Russian submarine Kursk off northern Russia in August 2000. Long-range torpedoes fueled with hydrogen peroxide exploded in succession, which sank the submarine; a fifth of the crew of 118 survived the explosions, but probably did not last more than another eight hours. The Russian Northern Fleet failed to recognize the signs of an accident, failed to take any sort of constructive action with its limited resources, failed to inform political superiors, and didn't allow any cooperation with the efficient rescue gear of the NATO navies. Russian officials were then caught by the independent Russian media in several outright lies, which made for further scandal. Not that Western authorities were much more on the ball—the American and...


Kremlin Rising: Vladimir Putin's Russia and the End of Revolution
Peter Baker
0743264312
May 2005
Hardcover
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From The Washington Post's Book World/washingtonpost.com
In 1931, Soviet leader Joseph Stalin gave a speech explaining that his country needed to industrialize rapidly to avoid repeating an old pattern: Russia being beaten because of its backwardness. He walked his audience through a litany of invaders: Mongol khans, Turkish beys, Swedish feudal lords, Polish and Lithuanian gentry, British and French capitalists, Japanese barons. "They beat her," he concluded, "because to do so was profitable and could be done with impunity." In their brilliant study of Vladimir Putin's rule over contemporary Russia, Peter Baker and Susan Glasser come back again and again to the current Russian president's eerily Stalinist rhetoric about the need to avoid looking weak so as not to be beaten (whether by oligarchs or Chechen rebels) and his resulting...


Land of the Firebird
Suzanne Massie, Suzanne Massie
096441841X

Paperback
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Sunlight at Midnight: St. Petersburg and the Rise of Modern Russia
W. Bruce Lincoln
0465083242
July 2002
Paperback
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From Publishers Weekly
Published posthumously, this history is based on the old adage that St. Petersburg is Russia's "window to the West," that it represents a "psychological force, an intellectual vision, and a way of life against which everything else in Russia has been measured." Lincoln (Conquest of a Continent, one of PW's Best Books for 1994), a top Russian scholar and professor at Northern Illinois University for 31 years, offers a highly accessible and gripping account. ("Dancing was her favorite pastime, and fashion one of her chief concerns," Lincoln writes of Catherine the Great. "Pages at her court strutted in bottle-green uniforms trimmed with gold lace and faced in red as they served guests in the European fashion.") Lincoln focuses on major events like the city's construction, the October Revolution and the Great...


The World Was Going Our Way
Christopher Andrew
0465003117
Sept 2005
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
This second volume of the post-war history of the KGB-based on the "Mitrokhin Archive" of secret documents purloined by the late co-author, a KGB dissident-surveys the Soviet spy agency's skullduggery in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Historian Andrew portrays Russian policy toward the Third World as largely the creation of the KGB, which hoped that the spread of Soviet influence and revolutionary upheavals would make these regions the decisive Cold War battleground. The Cuban Revolution inspired these ambitions, and by 1980, after the American defeat in Vietnam and with leftist regimes installed in Nicaragua and Grenada, Cuban troops fighting in Africa and Russian forces occupying Afghanistan, both American and Soviet officials saw communism on the march. Still, in Andrew's account, Soviet initiatives-with a...


June 1941 : Hitler and Stalin
John Lukacs
0300114370
April 28, 2006
Hardcover
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Review
Henry Kissinger : "John Lukacs's June 1941: Hitler and Stalin is one of the fullest and most authoritative portraits of the ambiguous relationship between the two powerful and wily adversaries during World War II's watershed year. Drawing on newly available source material from the diaries, personal papers and post-war interviews of senior staff members close to each, it is a fascinating and masterfully researched book."-Henry Kissinger
Henry Kissinger : "A fascinating and masterfully researched book."-Henry Kissinger
Simon Sebag Montefiore :  "John Lukacs's latest work, June 1941, showcases the worldliness, strategic wisdom and superb eye for the personal detail that has made him one of our most experienced, readable and sophisticated historians of the WW2 era."-Simon Sebag Montefiore, author of...


Anna Karenina (Barnes & Noble Classics Series)
Leo Tolstoy
1593081774
September 2004
Hardcover
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Wolves Eat Dogs
Martin Cruz Smith
0671775952
Jan 2006
Paperback
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Book Review
"Why would anyone jump out a window with a saltshaker?" A good question, especially when the suicide victim is Pasha Ivanov, a Moscow physicist-turned-billionaire businessman--a "New Russian" poster boy, if ever there was one--with several homes, a leggy 20-year-old girlfriend ("the kind [of blonde] who could summon the attention of a breeze"), and every reason to be contented in his middle age. So, wonders Senior Investigator Arkady Renko, in Martin Cruz Smith's Wolves Eat Dogs, what provoked Ivanov to take a header from his stylish 10th-floor apartment? And how does it relate to the shaker clutched in his dead hand or the hillock of table salt found on his closet floor?

Renko, introduced in Smith's 1981 bestseller, Gorky Park, is a cop well out of sync with rapidly changing Russian society, "a difficult investigator, a...



The Court of the Last Tsar : Pomp, Power and Pageantry in the Reign of Nicholas II
Greg King
0471727636
March 24, 2006
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
This high-end coffee-table book offers a comprehensive look at the lifestyles of the late-czarist rich and famous. King (The Fate of the Romanovs) includes chapters on major czarist institutions like the Russian Orthodox Church, but this is not his main interest; instead, he focuses on imperial ceremonies, palaces and the fashions of Nicholas's court, as well as sexual scandals involving members of the Romanov family. King has a vast knowledge of the subject, and those who are fascinated by the life of the royals and aristocratic intrigue will find much to delight in; for instance, his description of czarist royal jewelry and the magnificence of Russian balls, even as the regime was soon to crumble, adds to our understanding of how myopic the regime was. The photographs, both color and b&w, add to the book's...


The Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956
Aleksandr Isaevich Solzhenitsyn
0060007761
Feb 2002
Paperback
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Book Description

Drawing on his own incarceration and exile, as well as on evidence from more than 200 fellow prisoners and Soviet archives, Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn reveals the entire apparatus of Soviet repression -- the state within the state that ruled all-powerfully.

Through truly Shakespearean portraits of its victims -- men, women, and children -- we encounter secret police operations, labor camps and prisons; the uprooting or extermination of whole populations, the "welcome" that awaited Russian soldiers who had been German prisoners of war. Yet we also witness the astounding moral courage of the incorruptible, who, defenseless, endured great brutality and degradation. The Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956 -- a grisly indictment of a regime, fashioned here into a veritable literary miracle -- has now been updated with a...



Anna Karenina (Barnes & Noble Classics Series)
Leo Tolstoy
1593080271
July 2003
Paperback
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Book Description
Vladimir Nabokov called Leo Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina “one of the greatest love stories in world literature.” Matthew Arnold claimed it was not so much a work of art as “a piece of life.” Set in imperial Russia, Anna Karenina is a rich and complex meditation on passionate love and disastrous infidelity.

Married to a powerful government minister, Anna Karenina is a beautiful woman who falls deeply in love with a wealthy army officer, the elegant Count Vronsky. Desperate to find truth and meaning in her life, she rashly defies the conventions of Russian society and leaves her husband and son to live with her lover. Condemned and ostracized by her peers and prone to fits of jealousy that alienate Vronsky, Anna finds herself unable to escape an increasingly hopeless...


Dangerous Ground
Larry Bond
076530788X
May 1, 2005
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
Calling to mind such undersea techno-thrillers as Clancy's The Hunt for Red October and Hagberg's By Dawn's Early Light, this latest outing by Bond, a former naval officer turned bestselling military suspense author (Larry Bond's First Team, etc.), is an edge-of-the-seat yarn about an aging nuclear submarine on a secret mission to Russian waters. Using his senator uncle's political clout, Lt. (j.g.) Jerry Mitchell—a former pilot permanently grounded thanks to a wrist injury sustained in a freak carrier crash—has found his way into submarine training, where, among the other basic skills, he becomes an expert on the Manta, a robot device used for underwater exploration. Cmdr. Lowell Hardy, veteran skipper of the Memphis, a nuclear sub long overdue for decommissioning, is given orders to take Dr. Joanna...


From Russia with Love (James Bond Series)
Ian Fleming
0142002070
December 2002
Paperback
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From AudioFile
Robert Whitfield delivers an entertaining performance of one of Fleming's best 007 novels. Using a rich palette of international voices and accents, Whitfield takes an engaging story and infuses it with the additional drama that only a fine actor can provide. His deadpan delivery of the cliff-hanger ending makes the listener hope that Blackstone's next Fleming release will be Dr. No, the follow-up to this 1957 novel. The recording quality is good, although there are some minor volume fluctuations, and the tape breaks are poorly planned. But these quibbles do not detract from the overall high quality. G.M.N. © AudioFile 2001, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine --This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

Book Description
...


The People's Act of Love
James Meek
1841957305
January 9, 2006
Hardcover
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Book Review
James Meek has won several awards for his journalism and his fiction, but The People's Act Of Love is a singular departure from all that came before. It is a big Russian novel, written in English. Meek has upped the ante on such books as Cold Mountain and The March in bringing the reader his version of the unspeakable horror and brutality of war, the colder-than-cold winter, the cruelty and humanity of people in extremis.

It is 1919 in Yazyk, Siberia, far from anywhere. The war is waning, but its ravages remain. There is an uneasy detente between a group of Czech soldiers, marooned on the losing side and longing to go home, and a fanatical Christian sect that practices castration as a means of purifying themselves. One of their number is their leader, Balashov, married to a beautiful and...



Stalin
Robert Service
0674016971
Mar 2005
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Here is a life-and-times biography in the grand style: deeply researched, well written, brimming with interpretations. Oxford historian Service, author of an acclaimed biography of Lenin, provides the most complete portrait available of the Soviet ruler, from his early, troubled years in a small town in Georgia to the pinnacle of power in the Kremlin. Most previous biographers have depicted Stalin as a plodding figure whose only distinguishing characteristic was brutality. But Service describes a man who was intelligent and hardworking, who learned from experience and who played an important role in the Russian revolutionary movement. On so many of the complex issues of Soviet history—including Stalin's rise to power within the Communist Party, the policy shift to forced collectivization,...


The Hitler Book
Henrik Eberle
1586483668
Nov 2005
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
Even after Hitler's death, Stalin remained so intrigued by his nemesis that he commissioned a top-secret dossier detailing every aspect of the late dictator's private life, political behavior and personality. The result—File No. 462a, now known as The Hitler Book—was discovered hidden in the Soviet archives just two years ago by Uhl, of the Institute of Contemporary History in Munich and Berlin, who presents it with Eberle, a historian at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg. Much of its material was extracted, not entirely voluntarily, from two of Hitler's captured SS aides, though one should avoid taking all their gossip too literally, for the book reveals as much about the Soviet mentality as about the German. The dossier's authors, after all, appreciated the regime's need to present Hitler as...


Rick Steves' Best of Eastern Europe 2006 (Rick Steves' Best of Eastern Europe)
Rick Steves, Cameron Hewitt
1566917859
November 9, 2005
Paperback
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Book Description
Who but Rick Steves can tell travelers where to ride an Austrian mountain luge or visit the 3,000-year-old bust of Queen Nefertiti in Berlin? With Rick Steves’ Best of Eastern Europe 2006, travelers can experience Rick's favorite destinations in Eastern Europe, including Berlin, Vienna, Prague, Budapest, Krakow, Ljubljana, and Dubrovnik — economically and hassle-free. Completely revised and updated, Rick Steves’ Best of Eastern Europe 2006 includes opinionated coverage of both famous and lesser-known sights; friendly places to eat and sleep; suggested day plans; walking tours and trip itineraries; clear instructions for smooth travel anywhere by car, train, or foot; and Rick’s newest "back door" discoveries. America’s #1 authority on travel to Europe, Rick’s time-tested recommendations for...


The Romanov Prophecy
Steve Berry
0345460065
April 2005
Mass Market Paperback
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From Publishers Weekly
With this second Russian suspense novel, which focuses on the restoration of the Romanov dynasty, Berry shows he's honed his craft since his somewhat shaky debut, The Amber Room (2003). Miles Lord, a workaholic African-American lawyer from Atlanta, is in Moscow to help Stefan Baklanov, the Romanov claimant his high-powered firm is backing. Since the new tsar will reign as an autocrat like his ancestors, both big rubles and big bucks are at stake—not to mention access to nuclear weapons. Lord soon discerns that Baklanov is corrupt, a tool of the mafiya. While digging through old files on the Russian Revolution, Lord comes to believe Baklanov is the "raven" Rasputin predicted would help save the royal house in 1916. Teaming with a beautiful acrobat, Akilina Petrov of the Moscow Circus, Lord attempts to...


Rulers and Victims : The Russians in the Soviet Union
Geoffrey Hosking
0674021789
April 30, 2006
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
For much of the U.S.S.R.'s existence, there was no such thing as a Russian, reveals Hosking in his follow-up to 1997's Russia: People and Empire, 1552–1917. That particular ethnic identity was banned by the Communist authorities. Instead, all those inhabiting the czars' ancient territories were designated "Soviets" by their new ideological overlords. The name change did nothing to temper the impression of foreigners and the Soviet Union's many other unwilling nationalities that the U.S.S.R. was Russia, a violent imperial entity run by and for Russians. Indeed, Russians believed themselves to be "helpful comrades" who had a right to spread the Gospel of Marx—in a form adapted to accommodate "Russian myths and symbols dating right back to the sixteenth century." But Hosking also argues that there is an...


St. Petersburg (Eyewitness Travel Guides)
Anna Streiffert (Editor)
0789497271
December 2003
Paperback
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The New York Times
Each book is a visual as well as informational feast about a particular place. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Sky Magazine -Delta In flight Magazine
The best travel guides ever. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

See all Editorial Reviews


War and Peace
Leo Tolstoy, Anthony Briggs (Translator)
067003469X
January 19, 2006
Hardcover
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From Publishers Weekly
British scholar Briggs unveils his lucid new translation of Tolstoy's masterpiece-the first in almost 40 years-to a slightly anxious audience, from first-timers who, balking at the amount of time required by this massive yet startlingly intricate work, want to ensure they are reading the best translation available, to purists who worry that clunky modern prose will replace the cadences of earlier translations. But these concerns melt away after the first 100 pages of this volume. Briggs's descriptions are crisper and the dialogue is sharper, with fewer "shall's," "shan't's" and "I say!'s" than the Garnett, Maude, or Edmonds translations, leaving readers free to enjoy the rich and complex plot, vivid characters and profound insights into war and the nature of power. There are some awkward spots: Briggs claims his...

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