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Children of the Arbat Mass Market Paperback – April 2, 1989


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback
  • Publisher: Dell (April 2, 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0440203538
  • ISBN-13: 978-0440203537
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 4.2 x 6.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,517,986 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Russian --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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This book is well written.
Mcgregor R. Pearce
He's captured the egotism and paranoia of one of the world's most brutal leaders.
Evan the Dweezil
I hope that you will read this book because it's really great.
Nina

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Ralph Blumenau TOP 1000 REVIEWER on January 5, 2005
Format: Hardcover
It is not always easy to keep track of the many threads in this sprawling 685 page novel about the Soviet Union in 1933 and 1934, on the eve of the murder of Kirov and the Reign of Terror. But it gives a superb picture of the period: a vivid portrait of Stalin and his thought processes, of the lives of young people in Moscow, of how it was already possible for devoted and loyal communists to be sent into political exile. (Most people know about the slave labour in the Gulags, but fewer know of what life was like for political exiles, who lived more freely among the villagers of Southern Siberia). Among the people we meet are idealistic and decent communists as well as ambitious and scheming ones. It stands up remarkably well in the light of all the new knowledge that has become available since the collapse of the Soviet Union and the opening of the archives. In particular, Rybakov's picture of Stalin is confirmed by Simon Sebag-Montefiore's chilling "Stalin: the Court of the Red Tsar" (2003)
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Virgil on July 15, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This volume was first written in the 1960's Soviet Union under Krushchev's less onerous regime. By the time Children of the Arbat was ready for print Brezhnev had taken power and any dissent was supressed. Arbat was in fact, not printed until 1987.
The novel takes place in 30's Russia on the eve of the Great Purges under Stalin. The Arbat itself is street in Moscow which was once a bazaar and then (and now) the location of several cafe's and ourdoor music.
Children of the Arbat is great work combining literature and political commentary. Rybakov shows the impact of the terror on a small group of friends and relations. His portrayal of Stalin is on the mark, cold and ruthless.
An excellent novel of an era in Russia that should never be forgotten.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By "petey@efn.org" on August 13, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Rybakov refused to have his "Children of the Arbat" published abroad until it was first published in the Soviet Union. After reading how idealistic young Soviets sacrifice themselves to Stalin's lofty plans, in the end betrayed by the very system that they so strongly believed in, one can understand why it took so long before the book went to press. The reader certainly gets a feel for the hope, revolutionary fervor, and idealism of Soviet youth in the 1930's - even while the "Terror" was in full swing. The paths and decisions of the characters take each in widely different (and sometimes opposing) directions - much like life in the real world. Children of the Arbat is a fabulous read - its a pity that it is out of print.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Gary Selikow on May 12, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book documents the horrors of the Stalinist reign of terror in the old Soviet Union from a uniquely Russian perspective .It is in fact written in a very similar style to Tolstoys 'War and Peace' The epic develops at just the right pace with well developed characters who are very real.The hero of the story Sasha Pankratov,a loyal Communinst Party member who falls victim to the rotten machinations of the party,the rebellious and strong yet vulnerable Varya Ivaova,the scheming and ruthless Yuri Sharok,the opportunistic Vika Marasevitch,the colourless Nina Ivanova,the vilainous Kostya and a host of other characters who all get caught up one way or another in the evil of the Communist regime
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 30, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
A "semi-novelistic novel" which shows how Stalin took over the Bolshevik movement in Russia in the mid-1930's, dominating it with his complex-laden personality. It demonstrates how even the most dedicated, idealistic Marxists can be trapped in a web of invented accusations in a case rigged by ambitious officials, both military and political. The translation is admirable, and as a translator myself, I can appreciate how well the moods and idiomatic expressions are transposed, so the book appears to have been written, in its original text, in English. I wish it were longer than the 647 pages of the paperback!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 25, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
As I have been taking students to Russia in the summer for the past 14 years, I have loaned my book to many of them. It is terribly well-worn! For those who have read the book, the Arbat takes on a very special meaning whenever we visit. It is still one of the most beautiful streets in Moscow. This is a wonderful combination of fact and fiction, much like the movie "Inner Circle" which also explores the reign of Stalin. It is a must read, and I wish it were not out of print.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 17, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Rybakov writes a very engaging novel richly evocative of early Stalinist Russia. He is especially good at creating characters who represent different types without making stereotypes (e.g. the rebellious youth, the idealistic party member, the hustler, the cosmopolitan in denial, the opportunist working for the NKVD). The two later novels in this trilogy go through the purges and WWII. If Rybakov's novels have little humor and lots of anxiety, there is a reason.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By jrodio@cwmarsmail.cwmars.org on November 21, 1997
Format: Hardcover
A fascinating study of the freedom felt by young adults and how powerless they become as their lives change under Stalin's reign of terror. You'll be both surprised and repulsed as favorite characters deal with their circumstances in varying ways. If, like me, you'll not want this book to end, then you'll eagerly look forward to the concluding volumes of the trilogy.
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