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Kolyma Diaries: A Journey into Russia's Haunted Hinterland Paperback – 3 Apr 2014


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Kolyma Diaries: A Journey into Russia's Haunted Hinterland + White Fever: A Journey to the Frozen Heart of Siberia + Kolyma Tales
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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Portobello Books Ltd (3 April 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1846275024
  • ISBN-13: 978-1846275029
  • Product Dimensions: 14.9 x 2.5 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 92,672 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

'One of the most memorable travel books I have read, sometimes hilarious and sometimes almost unbearably sad stories of death, courage, cruelty and vodka. Jacek Hugo-Bader has travelled in some of the strangest and most remote reaches of Siberia, but what he has brought back are stories of the furthest reaches of the human spirit. Magnificent' --Andrew Brown, author of Fishing in Utopia

'Hugo-Bader's journey through the bleak suspended reality of Kolyma is a pilgrimage like no other. The cumulative effect on the reader of his stark diary entries is overwhelming. In a place where the cold itself is murderous, every chance meeting is at once a moral encounter with the Soviet legacy of cruelty and loss, and a source of primal warmth. Kolyma Diaries is a powerful and courageous work of witness - often funny, always unflinching in its confrontation with human sorrow' --Rachel Rolonsky, author of Molotov's Magic Lantern

'As in his previous book White Fever (2011), Hugo-Bader extracts brilliant tales from the extraordinary characters he meets (and drinks with) along the way. The result is a staggering, eye-opening account of a hellish region' --Financial Times

'I have never read a book that more purely captures the strangeness of travel in remote bits of Russia. It is a fascinating composite impression of one of the wildest bits of one of the world's weirdest countries. And it is told by a masterful traveller in the very best Polish tradition' **** --Daily Telegraph

'Powerful stuff, written by a man who seems to be the natural heir to Ryszard Kapuscinski' --'Best new travel titles', Conde Nast Traveller

'Hugo-Bader has a remarkable ability to get close to this array of individuals and to unearth their extraordinary stories. He succeeds in bringing them to life with his funny, engaging, thought-provoking prose. Kolyma Diaries is an excellent read for anyone interested in understanding the grim legacy of the gulags but also how the human spirit can flourish in the bleakest areas' --Socialist Review

'It is a testament to Hugo-Bader's skill and the strength of his subjects that the book is not only charming, but life-affirming. Its primary concerns are not flashy villains or remembered horror, but ordinary people' --Wall Street Journal

'Hugo-Bader has a remarkable ability to get close to this array of individuals and to unearth their extraordinary stories. He succeeds in bringing them to life with his funny, engaging, thought-provoking prose. Kolyma Diaries is an excellent read for anyone interested in understanding the grim legacy of the gulags but also how the human spirit can flourish in the bleakest areas' --Socialist Review

'A rich gallery of characters with gripping stories to tell' --Travel book of the year chosen by Tom Adair, Scotsman

'Hugo-Bader has a remarkable ability to get close to this array of individuals and to unearth their extraordinary stories. He succeeds in bringing them to life with his funny, engaging, thought-provoking prose. Kolyma Diaries is an excellent read for anyone interested in understanding the grim legacy of the gulags but also how the human spirit can flourish in the bleakest areas' --Socialist Review

About the Author

Born in 1957, JACEK HUGO-BADER is a Polish journalist for the leading daily paper, Gazeta Wyborcza. An unconventional traveller, he has biked across Central Asia, the Gobi Desert, China and Tibet, and has kayaked across Lake Baikal. His journey by jeep from Moscow to Vladivostok in the winter of 2007 is described in his last book, White Fever. ANTONIA LLOYD-JONES's translations include work by Jacek Hugo-Bader, Artur Domoslawski, and Jacek Dehnel. She won the Found in Translation Award 2008 for her translation of Pawel Huelle's The Last Supper, and again in 2013 for having seven translations published in a single year. She is a mentor for the British Centre for Literary Translation's mentorship programme.

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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A. J. Hammond on 4 Sep 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
One Polish writer's journey into the Russian hinterland. Easy to read and entertaining - a view into a world I will probably never get to visit, but which interests me greatly.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A fascinating account of a journey across post-communist Siberia. I t describes both the present day world and the recollections of the survivors of the gulags from stalinist days.
A very interesting read.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By I Grainger on 14 May 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What a fantastic book. I have never before finished a book and wanted to start reading it again. Which I have!
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