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Customer Review

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent book, a superlative biography., 2 Jan 2011
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This review is from: Young Stalin (Paperback)
I read Catherine the Great and Potemkin by Sebag Montefiore and loved it. I enjoyed it so much that I decided to read also his Young Stalin, a subject that in other circumstances wouldn't have attracted me.
I found an excellent book.
Sebag Montefiore's style, that was so harmonically tuned to the historical narration of a multilayered relationship (among Catherine the Great and Potemkin) in 18th Russia, here has changed.
It is now the end of 19th century, the subject is Stalin, and the author's style this time, is dry, synthetic, and virile.
The book starts in an explosive way, just like Stalin's life.
The author gives a complete, amazingly detailed picture of the years of Stalin's life until the revolution, thanks to an immense archival research, interviews to people that had contacts with Stalin or their descendants,
Sebag Montefiore is able to talk about him in an objective way, not a common thing to find, in one way or another. We all read about Stalin either as a monster or as a great leader.
Reading Young Stalin, we get to know him as a boy, son of a violent father, young poet, smart street urchin, young man who loved his mother dearly, lover, friend, ruthless man fiercely committed to his cause, regardless of anything.
With his compelling in-depth research, Sebag Montefiore also clears some doubts of historical relevance.
The narration is eloquent, the story is captivating, the descriptions evocative.
I cant' wait to read next Sebag Montefiore's history book to see how he will approach it!
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