Thursday, September 1, 2011

Russian Winter

by Daphne Kalotay

Russian Winter presents a glimpse of the life of artists living under the rule of Stalin. The ballerina Nina Revskaya reveals this struggle from a variety of perspectives: her own, her mother's, her poet husband's, and her friends, a musician, another ballerina and a government worker. While they were an elevated class, they did not escape the shortages, the surveillance or the threats experienced by all Soviet citizens living in a communist regime.

Kalotay offers this tale from an elderly Revskaya as she reflects on her life, trying to expel those ghosts that are haunting her in old age. At this same time she is confronted by a man claiming to have a connection to her and her past. For me, the answers to this connection were pretty obvious, but I still enjoyed the writing style and the information on post WWII Russia, the ballet, and jewels. It is apparent Kalotay did her research.

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