Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

Qty:1
  • List Price: $28.00
  • Save: $10.46 (37%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Once Upon a Time in Russi... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Ex-library book. Has usual library labels and stamps.Good readable copy with minor wear to cover. Pages clean and unmarked. Eligible for Free 2-day Prime or free Super saver shipping. All orders ship fast from the Amazon warehouse with tracking number. Amazon's hassle free return policy means your satisfaction is guaranteed!
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Once Upon a Time in Russia: The Rise of the OligarchsA True Story of Ambition, Wealth, Betrayal, and Murder Hardcover – June 2, 2015

4.2 out of 5 stars 147 customer reviews

See all 8 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$17.54
$0.99 $0.01

The Brave Ones: A Memoir of Hope, Pride and Military Service by Michael J. MacLeod
"The Brave Ones" by Michael J. MacLeod
Candid, wise, and powerful, this memoir takes readers on an unforgettable journey through war and allows them to witness bravery firsthand. Learn more | See related books
$17.54 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. In Stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Once Upon a Time in Russia: The Rise of the OligarchsA True Story of Ambition, Wealth, Betrayal, and Murder
  • +
  • Red Notice: A True Story of High Finance, Murder, and One Man's Fight for Justice
  • +
  • The Billion Dollar Spy: A True Story of Cold War Espionage and Betrayal
Total price: $44.82
Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Review

"A harrowing and truly Russian tale about the river of greed and corruption that gushed out of post-Communist Russia, carried men to power and opulence, drowned them in murder and betrayal, and led to the rise of Vladimir Putin." (Lev Golinkin, author of A Backpack, a Bear, and Eight Crates of Vodka)

"Mezrich turns his keen journalistic eye to Russia...and...the oligarchs... Mezrich focuses on two such men, a mentor and his young protégé, who accumulated staggering wealth before personal differences tore apart their relationship... Mezrich's ability to tell a true (and well-documented) story in a way that makes it look and feel like the most involving of narratives is nearly unparalleled. He is one of the few writers whose name on a piece of nonfiction guarantees not only quality but also interest, no matter the subject, and this fine book is one more example of just how talented a storyteller he is." (Booklist (Starred Review))

"Mezrich relates the story in the form of a true-life novel. The bestselling author has used the device before, including in The Accidental Billionaires, which provided the basis for The Social Network... Interviews, first-person sources, court documents, and newspaper accounts as the basis for his narrative... make the story more accessible." (Financial Times)

"With his knack for turning narrative nonfiction into stories worthy of the best thriller fiction, Ben Mezrich is one of our favorite writers." (Omnivoracious)

"Wolf Hall on the Moskva!" (Bookpage.com)

"Assassination plots, intimidation tactics, political maneuvering and money in unfeasibly large quantities… Based on a year of interviews with high-profile sources, it fleshes out almost 20 years of history with journalistic color and anecdotes."

(GQ)

"[A] fascinating and often chilling read." (The Sport (UK))

"Unputdownable." (Mail on Sunday)

"Ben Mezrich knows how to find a good story. In his latest, the Boston-based writer has a corker." (Boston Globe)

"The real-life tale of ... Putin’s ascendency to power. After the fall of communism in Russia, a small new class developed, that of the oligarchs... the ambitious and opportunistic businessmen who led the wild and lawless economic conversion from state-run industries to market capitalism.... Mezrich’s well-written account of this era of Russian history illuminates the tumultuous conversion of communism to capitalism." (Jacksonville News)

Mezrich's most incredible story yet. A true-life thriller... a fascinating read. (Palo Verde Valley Times)

"Compelling..." (Maclean's)

“Undeniably readable.” (Wall Street Journal, Best Business Books from 2015)

About the Author

Ben Mezrich graduated magna cum laude from Harvard. He has published fifteen books, including the New York Times bestsellers The Accidental Billionaires, which was adapted into the Academy Award–winning film The Social Network, and Bringing Down the House, which has sold more than 1.5 million copies in twelve languages and was the basis for the hit movie 21, and most recently the national bestseller Once Upon a Time in Russia. He lives in Boston.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE


Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Atria Books (June 2, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1476771898
  • ISBN-13: 978-1476771892
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (147 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #62,940 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
While this was a quick read and followed Mezrich's typical style of dramatized historical non-fiction (which I have really liked in the past), this story did not go as in-depth as his better books. If you are completely unfamiliar with the Russian Oligarchs and their rise and fall, this book should be a must-read. You will likely consider it quite an eye-opener on the corruption and violence in Russia. However, if you are familiar with the most famous oligarchs, you are likely to find this a fairly shallow overview of their history. I am a Mezrich fan and do not regret spending the time or money on this book, but it doesn't quite live up to his better stories.
Comment 11 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition
Once Upon a Time in Russia bills itself as a story of the rise of the oligarchs in the subtitle, and as “the behind-the-scenes, true story of two larger-than-life billionaire oligarchs” in particular—Boris Berezovsky and Roman Abramovich—in the introduction. But this is Berezovsky’s story. Abramovich plays a surprisingly small row, arguably less important than Georgian strongman and Berezovsky’s right-hand muscle Badri Patarkatsishvili, former-FSB agent Alexander Litivenko, and Bond villain Russian dictator Vladimir Putin, even Boris Yeltsin and his daughter Tatiana.

Berezovsky was one of an early wave of Russians from all walks of life—he was a half-Jewish former academic—to make his fortune in the wake of perestroika. Berezovsky made his first fortune selling cars bought from the manufacture on credit during a period of gross inflation. From there he moved into TV (his eventual downfall), oil, and aluminum. It was oil that sprang from his initial partnership with Abramovich. Abramovich, already owner of a pipeline, approached Berezovsky with the idea to take a state oil company private, and Berezovsky used his connections to make it happen. Berezovsky, along with his fellow oligarchs, also uses his connections, his millions, and his TV station to get Yeltsin reelected when it looked like the Communists were going to regain power.

It is hard as an American to grasp post-perestroika Russian business. Berezovsky and Abramovich didn’t make millions, they made billions. Berezovsky and the six confederates he recruited to finance Yeltsin’s reelection accounted for half of Russia’s GDP. Berezovsky lived surrounded by heavily-armed bodyguards and traveling in armored cars. And with good reason.
Read more ›
Comment 29 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is about Boris Berezovosky and his spectacular rise and fall as a Russian kingmaker. The book is not about the Oligarchs in general although Roman Abramovich is mentioned in relation to his dealings with Berezovsky. I found the book choppy, it strings vignettes together that occurred over a number of years into a semi-cohesive tale. There is much liberty taken in the form of ascribing feelings, emotions, intent upon the actual activities that we know occurred. It's dramatic and interesting, reading like a fleshed out screen play. How factual it is, whether the people really are as the author describes them is a question that can't be answered due to the overwhelming assumptions put forth in the narrative. I may now need to read a less dramatically written book about this books central players to see if their actions add up to the personality ascribed to them by the author of this book. If I could have given 3.5 stars I would have.
Comment 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Ben Mezrich's title is ironic in that this high speed adventure story takes place in the Europe of the past decade. There is no 'far away' or 'happily ever after' element to this story. Instead this thriller takes us on a roller coaster ride that hits you deep in the pit of your stomach. It's literally gut-wrenching. I held my breath as his title character, mathematician turned entrepreneur, Boris Abramovitz Berezovsky, navigated his way through the amoral corporate board rooms, government offices, billionaires' yachts, and the luxurious homes of the super rich, in an attempt to amass, not millions, but billions of dollars. His political and financial favors are not necessarily reciprocated when poisoners spike his best friend and business partner's drink with radioactive polonium. How fitting in this new world! We then watch Berezovsky's eventual downfall as his legal case for five billion dollars in damages against his former protege (the largest civil law suit in recorded history) doesn't go the way he had planned. By the end of the book, the reader is tacitly aware that the buck always stops at the seat of power. Putin's agenda does not include the new would-be titans of world industry. He has a totally different vision for the new Russia (although it bears a striking resemblance to the Russia prior to the fall of the Berlin Wall). I highly recommend this book.
Comment 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a well written thriller. A book that can't be put down once you start reading it. And it's a true story. It gives a clearer view of what went on in Russia after the collapse of Communism in 1989. It opens up the true nature of the principle actors in the drama that followed and explains why Russians behave as they do in the world, now as well as in the past. Their society is dominated by powerful and brutal men. Now I can see why a Stalin can come to power and hold on to it for so long. The Russian people crave strong leadership, even if it is illegal and brutal in Western eyes. The book reads like a crime novel. It makes Putin more understandable today. And, to me, raises questions of whether the Russians can ever be effectively integrated into the larger global community. They seem to be too easily dominated by a few ambitious and powerful men who use brutality and terror to get their way. An excellent and swift read.
Comment 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Once Upon a Time in Russia: The Rise of the OligarchsA True Story of Ambition, Wealth, Betrayal, and Murder
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
This item: Once Upon a Time in Russia: The Rise of the OligarchsA True Story of Ambition, Wealth, Betrayal, and Murder

Pages with Related Products. See and discover other items: russia