Top positive review
9 people found this helpful
on 8 December 2008
We all know about Yezhov during his high-flying quick career, but there is not much information known about him before. Until this book, that is.
If, like me, you choose to write your University report on the histary of the NKVD in Stalins Russia, than you may already know much about Yezhov, and how truly terrible the purges became under his appointment; so bad that the period has been named the "Yezhovschina" - The Period of Yezhov.
The book takes us through the main events of Yezhov's career leading up to his appointment of the NKVD, from his proletariat background as a factory worker in Sant Petersburg to the position of head of NKVD. The book does not focus on the NKVD head however, but instead on the events leading up to this. The main aim of the book is to clearly understand whether the Yezhov of the 1920s, the more friendly and less-sadistic Yezhov, and the Yezhov of the 1930s, cruel, merciless and "ruling with an Iron Fist" were the 'same person', and if so, what could cause such a change in Yezhov. One thing I picked up from the book concerning this question, is that Stalins infleunce upon Yezhov is great and clear.
Filled with many transcripts and list of figures of the time, the book also provides a look on how the party was organzied before Yezhov, who swiftly re-organized comrades and had everything running more efficiently. Following Yezhov's work in the Provinces outside of Moscow to his work in the party, and the Kirov assassination, before eventually finishing on Yezhov's beginings at the NKVD, the book provides a glorious insight to the RISE of Yezhov, unlike many other books which only focus on Yezhov as the NKVD chief.
Finished with a well-rounded conclusion and illustrated with some pictures I, myself, have never seen before, the book is definatly useful and I feel that others will benefit from it the way I did. I am very thankful that I found this as it gave me an insight into Yezhov the way that books and material available in Russia would not, it comes from a clear point of view, and holds many references and notes.
If you're lucking for information on his carrer as NKVD head, I would advise you look elsewhere as this book is purely information about events leading up to this.