- Paperback: 560 pages
- Publisher: Granta Books (2 Mar. 2017)
- ISBN-10: 1783783648
- ISBN-13: 978-1783783649
- Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 3.3 x 21.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,169,334 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Patriots Paperback – 2 Mar 2017
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'Urgently relevant, The Patriots asks huge, complex questions about identity, loyalty, truth and self-deception, and explores tangled historical connections between Russia and the US... At the heart of this weighty and engaging novel are true stories: hundreds of Americans living in the USSR in the 1930s and lives there today... The Patriots contains elements of family saga, corporate thriller, historical novel and philosophical bildungsroman. Krasikov writes with a poetic ear for sound and cadence' -- Guardian
'[Full of] rich themes... ambitious' -- Financial Times
'[An] ambitious historical saga from first-time novelist Krasikov... Bold' -- Sunday Times
'[An] outstanding historical saga [and] a dazzling and addictive piece of work... Accomplished and packed with believable detail and entertaining dialogue [The Patriots] also feels curiously relevant, tip-toeing around the complicated relationship between the United States and Russia during and after the Cold War... As an intelligent literary commentary on Russo-American relations of the past century, it's unparalleled' -- Spectator
'The Patriots is a masterwork, a Dr Zhivago for our times. It is a novel rooted in characters so real you weep over their tragic fates, so realized you think you're watching a movie, with sentences so sharp and wise they stop you in your tracks. The story of dreamy Florence Fein, from Flatbush, Brooklyn, will break your heart' Yann Martel
'A sweeping, ambitious kaleidoscope of family, faith, identity, idealism, and displacement... I found on every page an observation so acute, a sentence of such truth and shining detail, that it demanded re-reading for the sheer pleasure of it. The Patriots has convinced me that Krasikov belongs among the totemic young writers of her era' --Khaled Hosseini, author of The Kite Runner
'Krasikov has a real gift for storytelling. She combines love affairs with brilliant evocations of Stalinism, from detailed accounts of Soviet state orphanages to examples of Russian anti-Semitism and the brutality of all-night interrogations by the secret police... An astonishing first novel by a very gifted young writer' Jewish Chronicle
'[A] sweeping tale of family, identity and ideals' --A Must-Read in 2017, Lady
'Krasikov moves deftly between two eras in Russia marked by deal-making, connivance and treachery... A sweeping, colourful read that might get Warren Beatty thinking about a Reds II' -- Mail on Sunday
'Impressive... [a] multi-generational political thriller [and] a masterclass in historical fiction' -- Press Association
'[A] sweeping epic... a believable and astonishingly accomplished tapestry of lives caught between the turning cogs of history... Tragic, poetic and intimate' --
'Bold... convey[ing] a rich, evocative portrait of Moscow through the ages... A truly fascinating journey and examination of the development of political morality... it will reward you for the time you invest in it' -- Sleepless Editor
'Compelling... Krasikov's characters are so vivid that you almost think you are watching events unfold on a movie screen... The Patriots is a novel which encompasses many themes - identity, family, love, self-deception and the dangers of political ideology. it's a beautifully written epic novel, and it will certainly be one of my stand-out reads of the year' -- Culture Life
'[The Patriots] draws you in and envelops you completely, [with] characters who are as vivid as friends. Krasikov tackles huge themes with aplomb, her writing as confident as a veteran's. Particularly in the anniversary year of teh Revolution, what she has to say on the compromises we make for idealism - for love of country - is worth reading' --Elle Thinks --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Sana Krasikov is the author of 'The Patriots' (Jan 2017), and 'One More Year', which was named a named a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award, The New York Public Library's Young Lions Fiction Award, and received a National Book Foundation's "5 under 35" Award, and the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature. Her fiction has been published in The New Yorker and The Atlantic and other magazines. For more detailed info, there's my website (finally done): sanakrasikov.com
Top Customer Reviews
Florence Fein is the daughter of Russian-Jewish parents who have immigrated to the States. Brought up in a modest but loving Brooklyn household, Florence spurns her family’s American dream and yearns to do something more meaningful with her life. A job with the Soviet Trade Mission in Cleveland leads to an affair with a Russian engineer on temporary secondment. When he returns to the mother country, Florence confuses her love for him with her altruistic ideals. Whatever the spur, she sheds her comfortable capitalist life and sets sail in 1934 for Stalinist Russia. This is the first of Florence’s many misguided choices that will reverberate down through the generations. For an intelligent woman, she is remarkably foolish.
Decades later, her Russian-born son Yulik will be denied a university degree because the Jewish quota is full. Reversing his mother’s path, he immigrates to America, changes his name to Julian, and becomes a highly respected design-engineer of icebreakers, ships built to slice through to the Arctic’s New Oil.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)
Toggling between modern day Russia and the Soviet Union of the 1930s and 1950s, this novel fully captures the day-to-day lives of Russians and Americans trapped in Stalin and Putin’s treacherous and unpredictable worlds. It also reveals how the United States State Department, the American ambassador to the Soviet Union, Joseph Davies, and even the then president, FDR, conspired to prevent Americans trapped in the Soviet Union from returning to the USA. It rings true. I know because my aunt was trapped and perished there during the 1938 purges. The research I have done for a family memoir confirms it.
Terrifying to me was Krasikov’s ability to slowly, scene by scene, tighten the noose around ordinary people; to show how during Stalin’s era friends, husbands, wives, and children were trapped into denouncing their friends and relatives; to bring alive the stifling fear they faced.
Additionally and equally frightening are the chapters set in modern day Russia. Reverberations of the impact of deals between American oil companies and Russia left me shocked with parallels to our current crisisA quote cited in the book about Stalin’s era from Eric Hoffer’s book The True Believer (1951) is chillingly predictive of today’s world:
All active mass movements strive, therefore, to interpose a fact-proof screen between the faithful and the realities of the world….It is the true believer’s ability to “shut his eyes and stop his ears” to facts that do not deserve to be either seen or heard which is the source of his unequaled fortitude and constancy. He cannot be frightened by danger nor disheartened by obstacles nor baffled by contradictions because he denies their existence….
Both as a compelling page-turner and as a warning about current events The Patriots is a must read.
The Patriots is not a great piece of literature. It would benefit from editing to make the story shorter. Despite these failings, THIS IS AN IMPORTANT BOOK TO READ AT THIS TIME IN USA HISTORY. The novel accurately chronicles seventy years of the lack of true intelligence information and the naivete of American policy makers toward the USSR. It chronicles the iron grip of the government on its people, the pecking order within the work place and society as a whole which breeds paranoia and suspicion. Even in the 21st century, government critics are imprisoned or murdered. This is not rule of law, but rule of fear where money and power may or may not hold sway. Lines from the work of Eric Hoffer, The True Believer, should stun the reader as to its current salience: " It is a place where every lunatic proposition is self-evident while universal truths are hauled in for questioning." It is up to the reader to decide for which nation this quote applies.