In 1961, this epic WWII Russian novel about the battle of Stalingrad was seized for being "anti-Soviet" by the KGB; it was finally published almost 20 years after the author's death, when a dissident publisher smuggled a microfilm copy to the West.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Grossman (1905-64) hoped that Life and Fate (1960), the sequel to his World War II novel In a Just Cause (Za Pra voe delo, 1954; no English translation), would appear in the USSR. Even dur ing the 1960s "thaw," that proved im possible. The translator compares the book to War and Peace , but it is closer to Solzhenitsyn's The First Circle in portraying a society that knows neither physical nor spiritual peace. Grossman uses one family's experiences of the months of the Stalingrad campaign to show the entire mad tapestry woven by Stalin and Hitler. Like Solzhenitsyn, he depicts laboratories, prisons, and the Soviet elite's uneasy privilege, but he also covers both sides of the front and follows Jews to the gas chambers. This sprawling, uneven novel is wrenching, and compelling in its portrait of loyal citizens who repel the Nazi invaders only to face renewed repression at home. Mary F. Zirin, Altadena, Cal.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A phenomenal book, alas far too little known, juxtaposing the horrors of German Nazism and Stalinist terror and their perverting influence on human nature. Read morePublished 3 months ago by alexander budlovsky
This novel's greatness consists not so much in its fine writing, which in translation comes across as occasionally clunky and certainly not incredibly refined. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Rodge
This novel was my choice for summertime reading, and I was not disappointed. I had previously read the compilation of Grossman's wartime writings "An Author at War", so I... Read morePublished 24 months ago by Wreck Smurfy
Vasily Grossman was a journalist during World War II, he reported for the Red Army newspaper "Red Star", covering among other events, the battle for Stalingrad. Read morePublished on Dec 18 2010 by Daffy Bibliophile
This is one of the best fictional accounts of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-5 that I have ever read. Read morePublished on Feb. 11 2009 by Ian Gordon Malcomson
Growing up in the Cold War 1960's in the United States, I received the educational message that the Russian people (or, more accurately the people of the USSR) were basically a... Read morePublished on Oct. 18 2002 by givbatam3
There's a decent proportion of readers whose reaction to a Russian epic over 600 pages called "Life and Fate" is to snicker. If that's you, probably best to pass on. Read morePublished on Aug. 6 2002 by PawelMorski
Suppressed in the early sixties, translated into English in the mid-eighties, and published under Gorbachev's rule, Vasily Grossman's Life and Fate is the most famous Russian novel... Read morePublished on Feb. 16 2002 by firstname.lastname@example.org