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Stalin's Children

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Home » Books » History » Europe » Russia

Stalin's Children

By Owen Matthews

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Format: Paperback / softback, 320 pages
Other Information: Illustrations, ports.
Published In: UK, 04 May 2009
On a midsummer day in 1937, Boris Bibikov kissed his two daughters goodbye and disappeared. One of those girls, Lyudmila, was to fall in love with a tall young foreigner in Moscow at the height of the Cold War and embark on a dangerous and passionate affair. Decades later, a reporter in nineties Moscow, her son Owen Matthews pieces together his grandfather's passage through the harrowing world of Stalin's purges, and tells the story of his parents' Cold War love affair through their heartbreaking letters and memories. Stalin's Children is a raw, vivid memoir about a young man's struggle to understand his parents' lives and the history of the strange country in which they lived.

Promotional Information

A family memoir that has the page-turning, storytelling qualities of Jung Chang's Wild Swans and Frank McCourt's Angela's Ashes, against the historical backdrop of the harrowing events covered in Anne Applebaum's Gulag: A History of the Soviet Camps and The Gulag Archipelago 1918-1956, by Aleksandr Isaevich SolzhenitsynFor fans of Timothy Garton-Ash's The File: A Personal History, and the 2007 film The Lives of Others Longlisted for the Guardian First Book Award 2008

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About the Author

Owen Matthews was born in London and spent part of his childhood in America. He studied Modern History at Oxford University before beginning his career as a journalist in Bosnia. In 1995 he accepted a job at The Moscow Times, a daily English-language newspaper. He also freelanced for a number of publications including The Times, the Spectator and the Independent. In 1997, he became a correspondent at Newsweek magazine in Moscow where he covered the second Chechen war, as well as politics and society. Owen was also one of the first journalists to witness the start of the US bombing in the Panjshir Valley in Afghanistan, 2001, and went on to cover the invasion of Iraq, 2003. Owen is currently Newsweek magazine's bureau chief in Moscow, where he lives with his wife and two children.

Reviews

'A Russian Wild Swans ... Some of the stories will stay with me forever' Sunday Times 'Heartbreaking, romantic and utterly compelling ... An astonishing personal history of love, death and betrayal' Simon Sebag Montefiore 'Gripping ... This fascinating book is not a footnote to Soviet history: it is Soviet history, one of the millions of private tales of evil and astonishing endurance that make up the awful whole' Observer 'Epic ... extraordinary ... Matthews ... seems to contain an essence of a Russia that preceded the turmoils and savage inflictions that he so richly describes in his book' Simon Callow, Guardian

EAN: 9780747596608
ISBN: 0747596603
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Dimensions: 19 x 12 x 2 centimetres (0.22 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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