A transcendent history/memoir of one family’s always passionate, sometimes tragic connection to Russia.
Owen Matthews, Newsweek
’s bureau chief in Moscow, pieces together the tangled threads of his family’s past and present to create an indelible portrait of Russia and an unforgettable memoir about how we struggle to define ourselves.
“Few books say so much about Russia then and now, and its effect on those it touches.”—Economist
“[A] resonant memoir…Call it irrationality, call it Russian maximalism, but the letters, papers and confidences Matthews inhabits in Stalin’s Children rehabilitate all the generations they touch—including his own—showing how their times shaped their choices.”—New York Times Book Review
“A moving book written with a tender yet unsentimental eye, a deeply intimate account that reveals through the lives of Matthews’ own family how the Soviet experience shaped, and destroyed, millions of people.”—Seattle Times
""At a time when Russia is reasserting itself on the international stage,""Stalin's Children"" should be required reading for anyone involved with economic, cultural or political relations with that country.... [A]n epic tale pitting the human spirit against the utopias and the dark realities that shaped Russian governance over three generations.... [A] narrative that moves seamlessly back and forth through history...a timeless portrait of the Russian soul.... All in all Mathews' contribution offers a poignant and insightful reading experience, leaving one with a keener sense of the unseen forces that drive present-day Russia.""—The New York Post
""Few countries have been haunted more by a terrible past than Russia. In StalinÕs Children Owen Matthews has written of the ghosts of his own family, with grandparents arrested in the Great Terror and his mother consigned to a Soviet orphanage when still an infant. His parentsÕ love for each other, kept alight across the Iron Curtain, makes an extraordinary story. This wonderful memoir brings to life the human victims of a terrifyingly inhuman system.""—Sunday Telegraph
""[A] fascinating family memoir. Matthews relates this dramatic tale in understated but lovely prose...[an] extraordinary tale.""—Publishers Weekly
""A heartbreaking, romantic and utterly compelling piece of reportage that superbly tells the story of four generations of the author's own family across 20th Century Russia, from Tsarist aristocracy to Stalinist elite, from the torture chambers of Stalin's Terror and the honeytraps of 1960s KGB to the coke-snorting orgies of 1990s Moscow Babylon and the battlefields of Chechnya. Here is an astonishing personal history of love, death and betrayal in Russia by a half-Russian writer who really knows the texture of the Motherland.""—Simon Sebag Montefiore, author of Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar and Young Stalin