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Spies and Cats
November 01, 2012

Spies and Cats

A review of two new works of fiction, Matthew Dunn's Sentinel and Ilya Boyashov's The Way of Muri. Both offer entertaining reading, for entirely different reasons.

The Museum of Abandoned Secrets
November 01, 2012

The Museum of Abandoned Secrets

Where we interview Nina Shevchuk-Murray, translator of this new book by Oksana Zabuzhko, which is an expansive piece of historical fiction that encompasses much of Ukrainian history, particularly during WWII.

Films, Noir, Churches and Aristocrats
September 01, 2012

Films, Noir, Churches and Aristocrats

Reviews of "Former People" by Douglas Smith, "Nevsky" by Ben McCool and Mario Guevara, "St. Petersburg Noir," edited by Julia Goumen and Natalia Smirnova, "Wooden Churches," by Richard Davies and Matilda Moreton, and "Russian Film Posters," by Vivays Publishing.

Chernobyl, Chechnya and a bit of Scifi
July 01, 2012

Chernobyl, Chechnya and a bit of Scifi

A review of "Visit Sunny Chernobyl," by Andrew Blackwell, "Sniper" by Nicolai Lilin, "Roadside Picnic" by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky, and Natasha Borzilova's new CD, "Out of My Hands."

A Wealth of Literature
May 01, 2012

A Wealth of Literature

Our review shelves were overloaded this month, necessitating more and shorter reviews. There is both great fiction (Scar, by the Dyachenkos; The Twelve Chairs, by Ilf & Petrov; The Time of Women, by Elena Chizhova; 50 Writers) and non-fiction including two Putin-focused histories and a remarkable look inside Soviet era labor camps.

Romanoviana
March 01, 2012

Romanoviana

Reviews of fiction with Romanov themes: The Fallen Queen, The Last Romanov, The Winter Palace. Shorter reviews of Notes on the Cuff, The Russian Origins of the Civil War, Russia: A 1000-year Chronicle of the Wild East

Gulags, Ments, Chekhov and Pushkin
January 01, 2012

Gulags, Ments, Chekhov and Pushkin

Reviews of Fyodor Mochulsky's "Gulag Boss," William Ryan's "The Darkening Field," and Andrei Gelasimov's "Thirst," with shorter notices on "Memories of Chekhov" (Peter Sekirin) and "Pushkin Threefold" (Walter Arndt, trans.)

Tolstoy, Spies and Empire
November 01, 2011

Tolstoy, Spies and Empire

Reviews of a new biography of Tolstoy, a book about a French-run spy, and a firsthand account of the end of the Soviet empire. Oh, and a new translation of a less-read work by Dostoyevsky.

War and Literature
September 01, 2011

War and Literature

Reviews of three non-fiction histories (Leningrad, by Anna Reid; Bloodlands, by Timothy Snyder; The Damned and the Dead, by Frank Ellis) and three works of fiction (The Sky is Falling, by Caroline Adderson; The New Moscow Philosophy, by Vyacheslav Pyetsukh; Separate Kingdoms, by Valerie Laken).

Six Books and a Movie
July 01, 2011

Six Books and a Movie

Reviews of the books "Made in Russia," "The Hottest Dishes of the Tatar Cuisine," "Moscow Believes in Tears," "Romanov Riches," "The Suitcase," "Russian Magic," and the film "How I Ended this Summer."

Fiction and Memoirs
May 01, 2011

Fiction and Memoirs

Reviews of five books: Snowdrops by A.D. Miller; Deathless, by Catherynne M. Valente; The Russian Word's Worth, by Michele A. Berdy; The Three Fat Men, by Yuri Olesha; Memoir of a Gulag Actress, by Tamara Petkevich.

Perestroika, Molotov and Dachas
March 01, 2011

Perestroika, Molotov and Dachas

A review of the film "My Perestroika," and the books "Dacha Idylls," "Molotov's Magic Lantern," and "The Road."

 

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EVENTS FOR RUSSOPHILES

Tea Is For Tradition
February 03, 2022 to October 02, 2022

Tea Is For Tradition

Museum of Russian Icons | Clinton, MA

The objects associated with Russian tea are tactile reminders of this important tradition and evoke warmth, home, and family.

Russian-Language Gallery Tour
February 22, 2022 to February 22, 2032

Russian-Language Gallery Tour

Brooklyn Museum | Brooklyn, NY

Russian-language tour exploring our collection in depth, second Sunday of each month at 1 pm. Free, reservations required

Martin Roemers: Relics of the Cold War
April 10, 2022 to October 23, 2022

Martin Roemers: Relics of the Cold War

Wende Museum | Culver City, CA

On view in the Wende’s West Gallery and garden, this exhibition presents work by Dutch photographer Martin Roemers from 1998 through 2009, when he captured the structural and topographic remnants of the Cold War in both the East and West over an eleven-year period.

A Few of Our Books

Murder and the Muse

Murder and the Muse

KGB Chief Andropov has tapped Matyushkin to solve a brazen jewel heist from Picasso’s wife at the posh Metropole Hotel. But when the case bleeds over into murder, machinations, and international intrigue, not everyone is eager to see where the clues might lead.
Murder at the Dacha

Murder at the Dacha

Senior Lieutenant Pavel Matyushkin has a problem. Several, actually. Not the least of them is the fact that a powerful Soviet boss has been murdered, and Matyushkin's surly commander has given him an unreasonably short time frame to close the case.
The Best of Russian Life

The Best of Russian Life

We culled through 15 years of Russian Life to select readers’ and editors’ favorite stories and biographies for inclusion in a special two-volume collection. Totalling over 1100 pages, these two volumes encompass some of the best writing we have published over the last two decades, and include the most timeless stories and biographies – those that can be read again and again.
Survival Russian

Survival Russian

Survival Russian is an intensely practical guide to conversational, colloquial and culture-rich Russian. It uses humor, current events and thematically-driven essays to deepen readers’ understanding of Russian language and culture. This enlarged Second Edition of Survival Russian includes over 90 essays and illuminates over 2000 invaluable Russian phrases and words.
22 Russian Crosswords

22 Russian Crosswords

Test your knowledge of the Russian language, Russian history and society with these 22 challenging puzzles taken from the pages of Russian Life magazine. Most all the clues are in English, but you must fill in the answers in Russian. If you get stumped, of course all the puzzles have answers printed at the back of the book.
Driving Down Russia's Spine

Driving Down Russia's Spine

The story of the epic Spine of Russia trip, intertwining fascinating subject profiles with digressions into historical and cultural themes relevant to understanding modern Russia. 
Bears in the Caviar

Bears in the Caviar

Bears in the Caviar is a hilarious and insightful memoir by a diplomat who was “present at the creation” of US-Soviet relations. Charles Thayer headed off to Russia in 1933, calculating that if he could just learn Russian and be on the spot when the US and USSR established relations, he could make himself indispensable and start a career in the foreign service. Remarkably, he pulled it of.
Life Stories: Original Fiction By Russian Authors

Life Stories: Original Fiction By Russian Authors

The Life Stories collection is a nice introduction to contemporary Russian fiction: many of the 19 authors featured here have won major Russian literary prizes and/or become bestsellers. These are life-affirming stories of love, family, hope, rebirth, mystery and imagination, masterfully translated by some of the best Russian-English translators working today. The selections reassert the power of Russian literature to affect readers of all cultures in profound and lasting ways. Best of all, 100% of the profits from the sale of this book are going to benefit Russian hospice—not-for-profit care for fellow human beings who are nearing the end of their own life stories.
The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas

The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas

This exciting new trilogy by a Russian author – who has been compared to Orhan Pamuk and Umberto Eco – vividly recreates a lost world, yet its passions and characters are entirely relevant to the present day. Full of mystery, memorable characters, and non-stop adventure, The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas is a must read for lovers of historical fiction and international thrillers.  

Popular Articles

Two Miracles of Russian Love Poetry
May 26, 2016

Two Miracles of Russian Love Poetry

On the occasion of Pushkin's birthday, we offer a post on the challenge of translating his most famous love lyrics, "Я вас любил," with a bonus look at Innokenty Annensky's "Среди миров."

Peace, Land, Bread
April 23, 2014

Peace, Land, Bread

Peace! Land! Bread! This was the battle cry of the 1917 October Revolution (old calendar) that changed the history of Russia and indeed the entire world. Since the time of Ivan the Terrible, the tsars concentrated on centralization of their power and control. The most common way of doing this was to take power away from the nobility, appeasing them by giving them dominion over their land and workers. This soon developed into the oppressive, slave-style condition known as serfdom.

About Us

Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.

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