Top critical review
14 people found this helpful
Good introduction but not a great read.
on 10 April 2011
"The Russian civil war" by Evan Mawdsley gives a good high level overview of the economical, political and military events in Russia between 1917 and 1920. It also analyses the reasons for victory of the Reds and the demise of the Whites during the civil war.
Whilst the book is a good introduction to the Russian civil war, I found myself struggling through the pages. Mawdsley resists the temptation to get lost in the detail but in doing so makes the story too abstract for my liking and fails to bring the period to life. I missed anecdotes, character profiles and exciting adventures, which prevented me from becoming engrossed in the story. For instance, only in the conclusion did I discover this conflict caused up to an astonishing ten million deaths. I would also add that the book contains nine maps, these are however very unclear and are nowhere referenced in the story as such I did not bother looking at them.
All in all, "The Russian civil war" is a decent introduction, but is by no means a great read. This book provides a good analysis of the Russian civil war but is only for readers with perseverance.