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Red Plenty by Francis Spufford
  

Red Plenty

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Sue Baker's view...

Not exactly history, not exactly fiction, a very strange and wonderful book that builds up a compelling picture of Soviet life in the 1950’s. We enter the lives of the Soviet people, real and imagined, their stories combining into an almost cinematic recreation of post-war Russia. A very addictive read, refreshingly different, a truly inventive and original creation.

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Molotov’s Magic Lantern: A Journey in Russian History, Rachel Polonsky
The Whisperers: Private Life in Stalin’s Russia, Orlando Fige

Synopsis

Red Plenty by Francis Spufford

The Soviet Union was founded on a fairytale. It was built on 20th-century magic called 'the planned economy', which was going to gush forth an abundance of good things that the penny-pinching lands of capitalism could never match. And just for a little while, in the heady years of the late 1950s, the magic seemed to be working. Red Plenty is about that moment in history, and how it came, and how it went away; about the brief era when, under the rash leadership of Nikita Khrushchev, the Soviet Union looked forward to a future of rich communists and envious capitalists, when Moscow would out-glitter Manhattan, every Lada would be better engineered than a Porsche and sputniks would lead the way to the stars. And it's about the scientists who did their genuinely brilliant best to make the dream come true, to give the tyranny its happy ending.

Reviews

A hammer-and-sickle version of Altman's Nashville, with central committees replacing country music . . . [Spufford] has one of the most original minds in contemporary literature. --Nick Hornby, The Believer A thrilling book that all enthusiasts of the Big State should read. --Michael Burleigh, The Sunday Telegraph


About the Author

Francis Spufford

Francis Spufford's first book, I May Be Some Time: Ice and the English Imagination, was awarded the Writers Guild Award for Best Non-Fiction Book of 1996 and a Somerset Maugham Award. His second book, The Child that Books Built was described as ' witty, compelling and elegant' by the New Statesman. His third book, Backroom Boys, was called a ' beautifully written book' by the Daily Telegraph and was shortlisted for the Aventis Prize and longlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize. He lives in Cambridge.

Author photo © Burt Koetsier

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Book Info

Publication date

1st July 2011

Author

Francis Spufford

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Publisher

Faber & Faber

Format

Paperback
448 pages

Categories

History
The Real World
eBook Favourites
eBook Favourites

Marxism & Communism

ISBN

9780571225248

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