- File Size: 585 KB
- Print Length: 348 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publisher: Neplokho Publishing (September 30, 2014)
- Publication Date: September 30, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00O3BEX4Q
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,455,603 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Your Memberships & Subscriptions
Rise of an Oligarch: The Way It Is Kindle Edition
|New from||Used from|
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.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Customers who bought this item also bought
Would you like to tell us about a lower price?
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Located in the real world of the U.S.S.R., in both Russia, Ukraine, along with Israel, you see the communistic politics and the tyranny, and the surprise of the corruption that went on the the U.S.S.R. amongst high officials, how they made money in their underground economy, how they partied hard, and how the Russian (and Ukrainian) Mafia works. Yes, there was (and still is), a Russian mafia, even back in Soviet times.
At the beginning of the book, we find the “hero,” Mikhail Vorotavich in a coma, with small chapters throughout the book reporting on his progress. The book mainly covers his rise to prosperity as a businessman, owning different companies, such as metalworks and steel, sports teams, and how he became a very rich tycoon, along with his involvement in the real life governments of Ukraine and Russia.
In a short summary, Mikhail (Misha) is of Jewish extraction, born in 1973 in the Ukrainian S.S.R. (Soviet Socialist Republic). Having an older brother named Sasha, his father was well to do, having a high position with the government, but one day, he was sent to Siberia, where he perished.
Misha and his family was forced to move into an inferior dwelling, and as he grew up, was bullied at school, but not for long. He did well in his studies and formed as business on the side, helping students cheat on his exams. In college, he set up a gambling and extortion ring, with hit man to those who couldn’t pay him.
He finds that he does have to deal with extreme anti-Semitism in Ukraine, but finds ways to bypass that obstacles, with business connections, and simply by assuming other names.
As time went on, and Ukraine was freed from Soviet domination, he acquire real estate, industries, all at cheap rates from the government going from communist to capitalist. Many businesses were forced to sell to him at cheap prices. There are incidents, such as selling vaccines that did not work to farmers to supposedly protect their livestock from disease.
Enemies are made, and Misha has ran into situations where governments, like Angola, were more powerful than him, but he would find ways to deal with them. There is extortion, revenge, and wild parties where clients are supplied with booze, women, and drugs, before getting down to business.
As you can see, the character here is not a nice person. He is dangerous, and is obsessed with becoming the richest man in the world. You can see how all this leads to him being shot, and there is a chapter describing just that.
The current events of Ukraine and Russia, along with Israel, for Misha did have connections there, including Mossad, the Israeli secret police. There are incidents where Misha has business in Crimea before it is annexed by Russia, and you see how these governments really operate.
Corruption is the norm in both Russia and Ukraine, all the way up to the governments, up to Vladimir Putin, and the Ukrainian government as well. There are gangs and organized crime basically running these two countries, with severe consequences to anyone who dares cross their paths. Russia and Ukraine may be at war with each other, but in many ways, they are more similar than they are different, especially in the field of corruption.
There are those in both countries that talk and do business with each other, but, with Misha helping to lead the way, he is a Ukrainian patriot who want Ukraine to join the European Union, while Russia still wants it in its orbit, and this is true in real life.
When Misha does get out of a coma, he finds enemies are onto him, and he finds he has scores to settle.
You will see how he, and his friends, do so in the succeeding book.
Note the word “Oligarch.” Here, it can mean business of the Forbes list, but here, it is closer to “mafia kingpin.” Actually, it mean both at the same time.
My personal angle is that I'm American and Israeli, and from Eastern European decent. I have many friends from the former Eastern Block. I travelled extensively in Russia and Ukraine, and currently doing business with very large Russian companies. Most people in the West think that anyone who speak Russian is from Russia... couldn't be further away from the truth... I know that and still I found Oligarch both entertaining and educating. Now I better understand the relationship between the Eastern Block countries and how people there think and operate - which is very different than how people in the West do. This I find extremely helpful in business.
Needless to say the current events in Eastern Ukraine and Crimea were literally forecasted by the authors. Forecasting and writing of world events is what I loved about one of my top-list authors, the great Tom Clancy... Could we be witnessing the successors of Tom Clancy forming in front of our eyes? Sofer and Krasno somehow managed to read the future - or have real good intelligence. Impressive, to say the least.
I loved this book and I'm looking forward to the sequel. To sum it up - Highly Recommended read!
This book answers many of the questions I had and definitely satisfies my curiosity. I'm aware that it's not about someone in particular, but the methods and situations described are so real and credible that I won't be surprised if similar schemes were actually implemented in former USSR.
The novel gives a detailed description of the rise of a Ukrainian oligarch, starting from his communist childhood and sharing insight into the moral dilemmas that he has to cope with along his thorny, to say the least, path.
As a parallel storyline it covers the investigation into an assissination attempt on Misha - the oligarch, which ultimately connects with a horrendous masterplan being implemented by high ranking officers. On top of that the book contains fascinating and somewhat funny sex, glamor and violence scenes.
Some ends are left loose, probably intentionally, for a sequel. I've finished reading this book during the flight and still have taste for more.
A very skillful blend of fiction and documentary – a must read for those trying to get a grip of understanding on the contemporary Russian-Ukrainian conflict.
Action book with a lot of relevance information to the short history (the last 20-30 years).
I really enjoy reading it and hope soon to start reading the second book.
Top international reviews
Having read the book, I get it, but I think a book of this calibre deserves a better thought-out cover.
What possessed me to purchase the book this time around, I’ve no idea, but I’m really glad that I did. It is brilliant!
An Oligarch is a Russian term for a rich businessman who uses his wealth to gain political power, and after reading the book I’m unsure whether the so-called Russian Mafia even exists, or ever did exist. Indeed, the Mafia, as we know it in the West, consists of crime families considered to be part of the Cosa Nostra, with each family claiming sovereignty over their territory, which could be a small village, or a neighbourhood, or a town or a city. The infamous Five Families of New York are the five major organized crime families of the Italian American Mafia in New York. Alliances can often be set up with other crime families – after much bloodshed – and the boss’s son will be expected to take over the family if the boss, the Godfather, is sick, killed, or imprisoned. Alternatively, Godmothers – Mafia wives, girlfriends, daughters etc. – may take over the family business when the head of the family is behind bars.
For the very first time, this book makes it absolutely clear that the Oligarch are not Russian Mafia. They are, however, completely ruthless, operating on a system of bribes to high officials in the Ukraine and ready to take extreme measures should anyone betray them or obstruct their business activities. There’s a part in the book where Misha attempts to move into America, only to discover that officials – high-ranking politicians etc. – are not as easy to bribe, and he finds this hard to comprehend because in the Ukraine that’s how business is done, and it’s habitual.
What we have here is a very readable history of Ukraine, seen through the life of Mikhail Vorotavich, known as Misha to his associates.
Putting in a tender to develop a new highway between Moscow and Minsk in Belarus is made all the easier when only three bidders contest the job, two of the companies are owned by Misha himself and the third is a company belonging to the President’s nephew. Three other bidders were ‘removed’ due to ‘technical reasons.’ It’s ‘arranged’ for one of Misha’s companies to win the $5.4 billion tender, although it’s ‘recommended’ that they take the President’s nephew’s company as a subcontractor, although they’ll take no part in the actual construction. Misha just has to pay him 15% ($800 million) just because his uncle is the President. Although Misha begrudges paying the inept nephew $800 million for doing absolutely nothing, the overall profit will be something like $3.5 billion.
The figures, of course, are stupefying, and only serve to demonstrate that this is the big time. The Russian / Ukrainian Oligarch are indeed relentless and extremely brutal if that’s what it takes.
The overall question throughout the book, however, is who did shoot Mikhail Vorotavich?
And who is the Puppet Master?
Well, I’m not telling you. You’ll have to buy the book to find out, but I found this story to be a captivating read
This is a novel that draws heavily on the authors’ expertise involving the political situations in Ukraine, Russia and Israel, among the global markets involved. For me, the back story is imbued with convincing realism due to the life experiences of the authors and I found it a fascinating journey into the lifestyles of people in the countries mentioned above and also into the machinations of the business world in which they work, manipulate, and die. There is no sparing the brutal realities of lives led to excess and the enemies created as a result.
I liked this book very much and the tale told by two very capable and interesting authors is well worth it for the reader. The explosive ending is worth the wait and there is more to come. Recommended.
Misha is an interesting protagonist. He learns early that corruption is the only way to get ahead, and this knowledge serves him well. However, even while he tells of his wheeling and dealing, and the effects this has on others, we still like him. He's honest – with himself if not with his business opponents – and has a sense of humour. Even while he is trampling over the rights of the poor Ukrainian workers on his way to the top, we still root for him.
The authors also manage to convey an authentic eastern European feel, which is quite different to the same type of story with a western protagonist. The story is also interwoven with the politics of Ukraine and Russia, which is interesting to read about from the Ukrainian point of view.
All in all, a book I enjoyed very much, and I will be reading the next book in the series Mortal Showdown: Action, Political Thriller .