- File Size: 3021 KB
- Publication Date: March 28, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00JBSI0UY
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #916,314 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Zhirinovsky's Russian Empire: An Alternate History Kindle Edition
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Longer version: I try not to be a grammar Nazi, but this work is riddled with the same annoying errors over and over and over again - 'to and too', 'there, they're and their', 'apostrophe s' for plural, 'repeal' instead of 'repel', sentence fragments galore, verb tense disagreement, crazy homophone errors (i.e.:'one' instead of 'won'), and so on. Strongly suspect that this was written using voice recognition software, and anything that spell check didn't object to got a free pass.
A halfway decent editor would have made a world of difference. If you can get by the distracting editing issues it IS a heck of read.
Even worse, waste of mine.
That being said, it's-up and down. On one hand, it has some excellent scenes-my favorite is that of a dying general rescuing thousands from crazed mobs-and is effective at showing a 1990s that, for Americans, is the exact opposite of the peaceful decade it was in real history.
On the other, it has some major issues with both plausibility and storytelling. From the plausibility perspective, it adopts too much of an "if something can go wrong, it will go wrong" philosophy. I understand it's meant to be dystopian, but so many contrived failures stop being realistic and start being annoying. This is especially true with the way the author arranges the title character's rise to power-a smarter (at least narrative) way would be to have Zhironovsky face only really rigged "elections" rather than semi-free contests he keeps managing to weasel through with charm and dirty electoral tricks. Getting him to power in place of someone else after Yeltsin's death is contrived enough.
There's also a narrative dissonance between horrible slaughters and goofy scenes like Zhironovsky punching Tony Blair.
I consider it to be so powerful, I saw it almost as a textbook from a different reality. The strengths lie in the ability of the author to create witnesses of this strange world that come from all different backgrounds, from diplomats and foreign policy experts, to travel show hosts and athletes. This variation allows me to suspend disbelief as a read about Russians colonizing Kazakhstan, Dubai becoming a nation, and empandas becoming a national dish in Russia, and believe that this world and its unlucky residents seem to reach out to me. The events of the story are as unpredictable as the march of history itself, with good and bad popping up out of nowhere to make it appear less of a dystopia.
The grammar is my only complaint about the story, but it does little to reduce my shock as I see a world shaped by Vladimir Zhirinovsky.
But it's a GREAT, very plausible story, with fascinating correspondences to actual current events! And the characterization of Vladimir Putin is priceless. Despite my horror about the editing, I just couldn't put it down, and it was quite a long, drawn-out narrative.
I urge D.F. Pellegrino to take another look at this book. With proper editing and some selective rewriting, 5 stars all the way!
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Malapropisms, misspellings, grammatical errors make this painful. Please get an editor.Read more