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Solovyov and Larionov

From the award-winning author of Laurus

Translated by Lisa C. Hayden
Published by Oneworld Publications
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book


A groundbreaking and gripping literary detective novel set in Soviet-era Russia, from the award-winning author of Laurus and The Aviator

Can we ever really understand the present without first understanding the past?

From the winner of the 2019 Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn Prize, and the author of the multi-award winning Laurus, comes a sweeping novel that takes readers on a fascinating journey through one of the most momentous periods in Russian history.

What really happened to General Larionov of the Imperial Russian Army, who somehow avoided execution by the Bolsheviks? He lived out his long life in Yalta leaving behind a vast heritage of undiscovered memoirs. In modern day Russia, a young student is determined to find out the truth.

Solovyov and Larionov is a ground-breaking and gripping literary detective novel from one of Russia's greatest contemporary writers.

About The Author

Eugene Vodolazkin was born in Kiev and has worked in the department of Old Russian Literature at Pushkin House since 1990. He is an expert in medieval Russian history and folklore. Solovyov and Larionov is his debut novel. Laurus (Oneworld, 2015), his second novel but the first to be translated into English, won the National Big Book Award and the Leo Tolstoy Yasnaya Polyana Award and has been translated into eighteen languages. His third novel, The Aviator (Oneworld, 2018), was shortlisted for the Russian Booker Prize and the National Big Book Award. He lives in St Petersburg.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Oneworld Publications (November 1, 2018)
  • Length: 416 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781786070364

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Raves and Reviews

‘[A] wry and whimsically humorous historical detective story.’

– Times Literary Supplement

‘Absorbing, darkly witty, history-soaked pages for literary and historical fiction fans.’

– Library Journal: Reading Around The World: 12 Top Spring Titles for the Library Market

‘Vodolazkin has produced a romanticized hero's quest that affirms the "indivisibility and harmony" of history and personal fate. In the face of overwhelming death tolls, he insists on making space for mythology.’

– Wall Street Journal

‘Simply cannot be ignored... A smart and often humorous account of contemporary Russian life that reminded me several times of his fellow citizen Svetlana Alexievich’s nonfiction.’

– LitHub

‘There is sprightly, funny satire here and, beneath it, a surprising vein of poignancy.’

– Kirkus

‘An ambitious first novel. It is to Vodolazkin’s credit that he pulls it off, creating a substantial, beguiling work that engages the reader on several levels, encompassing a detective story, historical events and even a little romance.’

– The Herald, Scotland

‘More than a beautifully written coming-of-age of the finest novels I have read in years.’

– World Literature Today

‘Third-person narration, circular structure, and archetypal characters lend this beautifully written literary mystery the feel of a modern fable. [We] recommend Vodolazkin’s slowly unfolding story to readers who prefer detailed research, artfully layered descriptions, and character epiphanies to thrills.’

– Booklist

‘A very unique blend of literary genres... I became captivated by this Russian tale with all of its stories within a story. This is a true Russian novel.’

– Marjorie’s World of Books

'Solovyov's and Larionov's careers are interwoven so deftly that the novel can be enjoyed as part academic satire, part historical romp... Solovyov and Larionov contains some hilarious character sketches and set pieces, from academic jousting for precedence to conflicts over property in a communal apartment.'

– L.A. Review of Books

‘Award-winning author Vodolazkin seamlessly weaves together the lives of his two heroes... [but] this coming-of-age story offers the reader a much richer experience than mere biography.’

– Historical Novel Society

‘I couldn't put it down.’

– A Bookish Type blog

‘Vodolazkin is one of the most interesting contemporary writers.’

– Russia Beyond, '5 great Russian books for your summer reading list'

‘I found Solovyov and Larionov to be just as good a book as The Aviator in its beautiful writing, its thought-provoking narrative and its wonderfully atmospheric sense of place and time. I can see that I'm going to be pondering on it for quite some time to come...’

– Kaggsy's Bookish Ramblings

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More books from this author: Eugene Vodolazkin