This translation is unique. While working on the book, the American translator Simeon Leyzerzon took the text to a completely new level. The book contains many additional footnotes that explain Russian historical realities for foreign readers, and most importantly, the narrative is embellished with wonderful illustrations, on which Simeon and I worked hard.
Most photographs and artistic images are unknown to the general public. In the photographs you can see Nicholas II in a German military uniform, Grand Duchess Maria in the company of her lover – officer Nikolai Demenkov, poet Sergei Yesenin in an officer’s uniform, barefoot Maximilian Voloshin in a Greek mantle and manuscripts of desperate poems by Tsvetaeva addressed to Mandelstam…
The book is already available in online stores:
The Russian version of the historical novel “One Last Summer Before the Revolution” can be read on Litres.
About the book: Nature was the first to rebel. The summer of 1916 roared with thunderstorms, wind in the face, and icy rain from the sky. But people barely noticed the weather. War was on everyone’s lips, interfering with creativity, study, love, life, dividing society into two camps. Revolution already loomed in the electrified air; yet the Tsar, who had unleashed the war, did not notice. He trusted his own newspapers, followed battles in the movies, and worried most about his family…
Here is a documentary cross-section of the epoch through the letters, emotions, and thoughts of the participants; but we also rise above the fray – the finest threads connecting all our heroes are especially visible from above: from the emperor to the poet, from the military doctor to the poor peasant woman. These threads intertwined into the fuse of the future revolution, ignited by the summer lightning of 1916.
The book is inspired by the work of German writer Florian Illies “1913: The Summer of the Century.”