Start reading SUBTLY WORDED AND OTHER STORIES (Pushkin Collection) on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here or start reading now with a free Kindle Reading App.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

 
 
 

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Colour:
Image not available
 

SUBTLY WORDED AND OTHER STORIES (Pushkin Collection) [Kindle Edition]

Teffi , Robert Chandler , Anne Marie Jackson , Clare Kitson , Natalia Wase
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £12.00
Kindle Price: £4.68 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
You Save: £7.32 (61%)
* Unlike print books, digital books are subject to VAT.

Free Kindle Reading App Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.

To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition £4.68  
Paperback £11.39  
Kindle Daily Deal
Kindle Daily Deal: Up to 70% off
Each day we unveil a new book deal at a specially discounted price--for that day only. Learn more about the Kindle Daily Deal or sign up for the Kindle Daily Deal Newsletter to receive free e-mail notifications about each day's deal.

Book Description

A selection of the finest stories by this female Chekhov

Teffi's genius with the short form made her a literary star in pre-revolutionary Russia, beloved by Tsar Nicholas II and Vladimir Lenin alike. These stories, taken from the whole of her career, show the full range of her gifts. Extremely funny - a wry, scathing observer of society - she is also capable, as capable even as Chekhov, of miraculous subtlety and depth of character.

There are stories here from her own life (as a child, going to meet Tolstoy to plead for the life of War and Peace's Prince Bolkonsky, or, much later, her strange, charged meetings with the already-legendary Rasputin). There are stories of émigré society, its members held together by mutual repulsion. There are stories of people misunderstanding each other or misrepresenting themselves. And throughout there is a sly, sardonic wit and a deep, compelling intelligence.

Teffiwas a phenomenally popular writer in pre-revolutionary Russia - a favourite of Tsar Nicholas II and Vladimir Lenin alike. She was born in 1872 into a prominent St Petersburg family and emigrated from Bolshevik Russia in 1919. She eventually settled in Paris, where she became an important figure in the émigré literary scene, and where she lived until her death in 1952. A master of the short form, in her lifetime Teffi published countless stories, plays and feuilletons. After her death, she was gradually forgotten, but the collapse of the Soviet Union brought about her rediscovery by Russian readers. Now, nearly a century after her emigration, she once again enjoys critical acclaim and a wide readership in her motherland.


Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

Page of Start over
This shopping feature will continue to load items. In order to navigate out of this carousel please use your heading shortcut key to navigate to the next or previous heading.

Product Description

Review

'Made me fall in love... [Teffi] can write in more registers than you might think, and is capable of being heartbreaking as well as very funny. I wish she were still alive, and I could have met her. But then I realised she would have seen right through me. I can't recommend her strongly enough' Nicholas Lezard, Guardian, Paperback of the Week

About the Author

Teffi was a phenomenally popular writer in pre-revolutionary Russia - a favourite of Tsar Nicholas II and Vladimir Lenin alike. She was born in 1872 into a prominent St Petersburg family and emigrated from Bolshevik Russia in 1919. She eventually settled in Paris, where she became an important figure in the émigré literary scene, and where she lived until her death in 1952. A master of the short form, in her lifetime Teffi published countless stories, plays and feuilletons. After her death, she was gradually forgotten, but the collapse of the Soviet Union brought about her rediscovery by Russian readers. Now, nearly a century after her emigration, she once again enjoys critical acclaim and a wide readership in her motherland.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1113 KB
  • Print Length: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Pushkin Press; Tra edition (19 Jun. 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00K9W3YHK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #200,375 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?


More About the Authors

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Funny on the outside but tragic on the inside 13 July 2014
By Antenna TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
The Russian writer Teffi's satirical short stories, "funny on the outside but tragic" within, remind me of Saki's, but without his cruel streak. Her opening lines often contain an intriguing hook: "The Christmas party was fun.... There was even one boy who had been flogged that day-"

To some extent tracing her own life from inquisitive child, through vivacious girl to philosophical old woman, her themes are varied, but tales from before the Russian Revolution tend to focus on people's characters and situations: the way those who have been badly treated take it out on the next person in the pecking order, ending with the child who kicks the cat which can only "pour out her grief and bewilderment to the dustbin"; the young woman who goes out in a burst of confidence, believing that her new blue hat will make her attractive. Teffi was good at portraying children: the little girl so struck by a toy ram's "quite human... meek face and eyes" that she "sticks his face into a jug of real milk", until an empathetic grown up explains, "Live milk for the living. Pretend milk for the unliving".

I am most impressed by the tales from her exile in Paris, after the Russian Revolution. "Subtly worded", source of the collection's overall title, is particularly clever, revealing how expatriates have to dissemble in letters back home to "guarantee" that their correspondents will "not be arrested and shot" for having received them. Advice is on the lines of "You should have written as a woman. Otherwise your brother will arrested" for his relationship to a man "who has evaded military conscription. Second, you shouldn't mention having received a letter, since correspondence is forbidden. And then you shouldn't let on that you understand how awful things are here.
Read more ›
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An unusual and charming book. 29 Aug. 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was unaware of the writings of Teffi until I received an Amazon recommendation for 'Subtly Worded' and the book was a pleasant surprise. She was a journalist and belle lettriste who wrote about pre-revolutionary Russia and later about Paris, where she lived as a White Russian exile. Her subtly worded - and beautifully translated - pieces provide insights into the social lives of both her homes, and there is a riveting account of her encounter with Rasputin.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Snapshots of pre-revolutionary Russia 23 Jun. 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a hugely enjoyable collection of stories by Teffi, a 'literary star' in pre-revolutionary Russia who was admired by 'such disparate figures as Vladimir Lenin and Tsar Nicholas II.' She's not particularly well known to modern readers, particularly in the west, and this volume goes some way to shining a light on this obscurity.
Teffi's stories cover a huge range of themes, often comic but always with a slightly unsettling, darker undertone. In one of the longer stories, Teffi relates her meetings with Rasputin and, in the process, provides a truly vivid and memorable portrait of the man, suffused with her own scepticism.
The volume presents us with snapshots of pre-revolutionary Russia and the post-revolutionary émigré society in Paris. Many of the stories are fictional, but the worlds presented in them are very real. Teffi sympathetically and humorously portrays the day to day worries and cares of these people. All of the translations retain the writer's extremely lucid, ironic and knowing style. A hidden gem and an absolute treat.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This collection of short stories spans the period before the great war and revolution in Russia, and the period of exile of the author in Western Europe, until her death in the early 1950s.
The stories are written as simple, elegant narratives, but are underpinned by sparse and masterful plots and a deep understanding of the psychology of the characters. They concentrate on the personal, and at times are almost as chatty as Maeve Binchy, and yet convey the very different social contexts within which they are set.
Her Rasputin tales are perhaps the best known, and even today, her description of his conversation and touch sends a shiver down the spine.
There are two stories written from the point of view of six year olds, their anguish counterpointed by the timelessness of old Russia, which are perfect in themselves as stories, and could also be used as a demonstration of childhood attachment in psychology classes now. Another moves from before the war to the civil war and beyond, with an innocent, and rather unobservant girl as the teller of the tale. Her self centered, teenage actions and perspectives provide the spring for the plot and enable us to experience the impact of the cruelty of war, the drama and terror of revolution, the fevered marginal lives of artists and spivs at the time, and the separation and loss of war and civil war. Even the surreal is real. The title story is clever, but to my view a little obvious. Maybe the theme has been repeated too often since.
Among the stories of exile which display the dislocated world of the Russian exiles, is one which penetrates the soul and world of a French concierge on the loss of her husband, M. Vitrou.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Niet
The book looks charming and is nice to hold. Not so good to read, sadly. Odd short stories that didn't manage to grip me...
Published 1 month ago by Nemo
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Hard to get into but satisfying
Published 1 month ago by Rangawolf
5.0 out of 5 stars The Russians have words for it....
Teffi admired Chekhov; you can tell, her drawing of character is subtle and her acute judgements of characters are never superficial. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Mr. G. Morgan
4.0 out of 5 stars A slice of life in a bygone era
What a beautifully produced little book. So easy to pick up and read one of the stories. The stories are written with a light hand but have deep messages, some sad and poignant,... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Ms. C. A. Deans
5.0 out of 5 stars Subtly worded, short, deep, engaging studies
This is a collection of engaging, charming, and telling short stories. Here are deep studies of human pretence (The Hat, One of Us), hypocrisy (A Radiant Easter), brutality (The... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Geoff Crocker
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great literature. Warmly recomended
Published 11 months ago by Radmila Mileusnic
4.0 out of 5 stars "Coffee should be drunk very hot and with cognac"
Born in St Petersburg in 1872, Teffi wrote and published prolifically both before and after the Bolshevik Revolution, before and after her 1920 migration to Paris, and before and... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Lost John
4.0 out of 5 stars "Funny on the outside, tragic on the inside"
Teffi was the pseudonym of the Russian writer Nadezhda Alexandrovna Lokhvitskaya (1872 to 1952). She spent the first 47 years of her life in St Petersburg, but we can see from the... Read more
Published 13 months ago by Ralph Blumenau
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions
   


Look for similar items by category