Tell us a story

LoveReading is thrilled to announce the launch of The Very Short Story Award 2019! If you think you have a story we'll love, click here to find out more and how to enter:

Find out more


by Elise Blackwell

Historical Fiction Modern and Classic Literary Fiction

LoveReading View on Hunger

Only 144 pages but they are devastating. I cannot praise this stark, powerful, stunning debut tale enough. It is set in Leningrad in 1941 when the Germans surrounded the city cutting off all supplies. The siege lasted three years killing hundreds of thousands of people. We follow a group of scientists at the Institute of Plant Industry who have pledged to protect their collection of rare seeds and I’ll tell you no more than that. You have to read this.

Sarah Broadhurst

Hunger Synopsis

When German troops surround Leningrad and cut off food supplies in the autumn of 1941, no one imagines that the siege will last almost three years and take hundreds of thousands of lives. As the first 'hungry winter' sets in, the city's residents strip the bark off trees, boil and eat moss-covered stones, and trade priceless antiques for half a loaf of bread - and sex for a chunk of sugar. But the scientists at the Institute of Plant Industry pledge to protect their collection of rare seeds, painstakingly gathered from all over the world, no matter what the human cost. But as the siege continues, the group divides into those who would preserve their principles at the price of starvation, and others who turn to deception - and more sinister measures - to survive.

A powerful, stunningly precise and beautifully written novel about human nature under life's harshest pressures. Reminiscent of Rachel Seiffert's The Dark Room and Bernhard Schlink's The Reader in its brevity, spareness and power, it is a quite remarkable debut.

If you loved this, you might like these...

Parfums A Catalogue of Remembered Smells
This Blinding Absence Of Light
The Binding
Into the Night

All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780099463436
Publication date: 03/06/2004
Publisher: Arrow
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9780099463436
Publication date: 03/06/2004
Publisher: Arrow
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780099463436
Publication date: 3rd June 2004
Author: Elise Blackwell
Publisher: Arrow
Format: Paperback
Genres: Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction,

About Elise Blackwell

Elise Blackwell lives in Boise, Idaho, with her husband and four-year-old daughter Esme.

More About Elise Blackwell

More Books By Elise Blackwell

Cover for Hunger by Elise Blackwell
View All Books By Elise Blackwell

Share this book