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Moscow to the End of the Line Paperback – July 1, 1992
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Original Language: Russian
From the Back Cover
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Top Customer Reviews
Moscow to the End of the Line was written in 1970. During this time, Erofeev, himself, was traveling around the Soviet Union working as a telephone cable layer. Erofeev's friends have said the author made the story up in order to entertain his fellow workers as they traveled, and that many of these fellow workers were later incorporated as characters in the book.
The text of the novel began to be circulated in samizdat within the Soviet Union and then it was smuggled to the West where it was eventually translated into English. The official Russian language publication took place in Paris in 1977. With glasnost, Moscow to the End of the Line was able to be circulated freely within Russia, but, rather than stick to the original form, the novel was abridged in the government pamphlet Sobriety and Culture, ostensibly as a campaign against alcoholism. Finally, in 1995, it was officially published, together with all the formerly edited obscenities and without censorship.
Although he is an alcoholic, Venichka never comes across to the reader as despicable.Read more ›
But (unlike Dante) Erofeev never seems to arrive. As he downs more and more hooch, the story becomes progressively more blotched and incoherent. It culminates in the Passion of Erofeev, in which our poor hero is driven up against the wall of the Kremlin (though whether its the Kremlin in Moscow or Petushki is unclear) and left screwed.
This is a story about mercy. Read it. It is easily one of the best books I've read in the past year. Then pass the word along, because it deserves to be better known.
Erofeev was a gentle, witty drunk, immensely shrewd - he made a hilarious interview subject in a BBCTV documentary in the late eighties, retailing recipes for bizarre cocktails of vodka and air-freshener, despite the fact that cancer had stripped out his vocal cords. I don't know of any other works by him and wish I did. Legend had it he was working on a history of the Jews. Any tips?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Moscow to the End of the Line is one of my favorite books of all time. I've read it three times! It's written creatively and differently which is what I like. Read morePublished 12 months ago by James David Author of The Coast Guard Oracle
This book is not for averige Joe. You have to know the situation in USSR in 70s -80s of the last century. Read morePublished 12 months ago by isidor chait
Very boring; 164 pages supposed to be funny with practically nothing but how to get drunk with different types of vodka is really too muchPublished 15 months ago by bernard classic
There is no question that this is in many respects an interesting novel.Especially interesting are the bizarre concoctions that the narrator drinks. Read morePublished on April 10, 2014 by JAK
Alcohol and literature sometimes go hand in hand. In this semi-personal account of the last day of his life, Venedict Erofeev (VE; 1938-90) complains that whenever he wants to see... Read morePublished on August 25, 2012 by Alfred J. Kwak
This is the biggest smallest book I've ever read. An accurate, heartbreaking and hilarious book (not a novel, not a short story, nor a poem--it's totally unique) about alcohol, the... Read morePublished on July 24, 2012 by bookerish
This novel or "prose-poem" was completed in the USSR by the author in 1969 and published in the West in the 1970s. The English translation I read, by J. R. Read morePublished on February 1, 2012 by Reader in Tokyo
I have read this book many times. "Moscow to the End of the Line" stands up to many re-readings, and it is worth re-reading, because it refers in oblique ways to many other works... Read morePublished on July 20, 2011 by john the book guy
Benny (or Venya) Erofeev, the alter ego of the author, is traveling by train from Moscow to Petushki, which I take to be some sort of Edenic paradise ("original sin * * * does not... Read morePublished on January 16, 2009 by R. M. Peterson