Before and During -

Before and During

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Set in a dementia ward in Moscow in the long decades of late-Soviet stagnation, Before and During sweeps the reader away from its dismal setting into a series of fantastical excursions into the Russian past. We meet Leo Tolstoy's twin brother, eaten by the great writer in his mother's womb, only to be born as Tolstoy's 'son'; the philosopher-hermit Nikolai Fyodorov, who believed that the common task of humanity was the physical resurrection of their ancestors; a self-replicating Madame de Stael who, during her second life, is carried through plague-ridden Russia in a glass post-chaise and becomes Fyodorov's lover. (In her third and last life, she becomes mother and lover to Stalin). Out of these intoxicating, darkly comic fantasies all described in a serious, steady voice Sharov seeks to retrieve the hidden connections and hidden strivings of the Russian past, its wild, lustful quest for justice, salvation and God. AUTHOR: A historian of late-medieval Russia by training Vladimir Sharov, born in 1952, first turned to fiction in the late 1970s. It was not until the 1990s, however, that his extraordinarily imaginative and daring novels come to the attention of the public. When they did, they caused acrimony and controversy. SELLING POINTS: Russian critics have described Vladimir Sharov's writing as an almagam of Tolstoy, Doistoievski and Soljenitsyn.

Product code: 9781907650710

ISBN 9781907650710
Dimensions (HxWxD in mm) H198xW126
No. Of Pages 348
Publisher Dedalus Ltd