Russian Winter by Daphne Kalotay
First Sentence: "The afternoon was so cold, so relentlessly gray, few pedestrians passed the long island of trees dividing Commonwealth Avenue, and even little dogs, shunted along impatiently, wore thermal coats and offended expressions."
Daphne Kalotay's Russian Winter, a historical fiction novel, is one of those books that sat in my stacks for a few years waiting for the time is right moment to read and appreciate. The story follows Nina Revskaya in a dual timeline. In the present as an old woman, getting ready to auction off jewels from her life. In the past as a rising ballerina star in the Bolshoi during the days of Stalin and the war in the Soviet Union. Politics and oppression, rebellion and intrigue, life and death, play out in both the past and the present. Kalotay took a dark subject and made it interesting, pulling me in and leaving much to think about at the end.
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