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The White Russian (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 17. Februar 2004

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  • Taschenbuch: 560 Seiten
  • Verlag: Corgi; Auflage: New Ed (17. Februar 2004)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0552149004
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552149006
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 10,6 x 3,4 x 17,8 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 469.579 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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With Russia on the brink of a populist revolution, the least important thing to most residents of St. Petersburg in January 1917 might have been who stabbed to death an unidentified couple on the frozen Neva River. Yet solving that mystery is pretty much all that keeps Alexander "Sandro" Ruzsky, chief investigator of the city police, from despairing over his medley of personal torments, in Tom Bradby's doleful yet evocative novel, The White Russian.

It turns out that the dead woman on the ice used to work as a nanny to Tsar Nicholas II's children, until she was dismissed for stealing unspecified property. Her male companion, a Chicago criminal and labor agitator, was knifed 17 times and had in his coat pocket a roll of banknotes marked with tiny ink dots. A code of some sort? If so, who was he communicating with secretly, and to what end? Although Ruzsky, the black sheep son of an aristocratic family, just returned from a three-year Siberian banishment, finds his investigation hampered by the tsar's secret police, he slowly unpeels the layers of a conspiracy that involves not merely homicide, but also avarice, politics, and long-sought vengeance. The stability of Russia's monarchy may depend on Ruzsky's success in this case, as may the investigator's hesitant relationship with a star ballerina, whose cloaked past makes her a far more intriguing, and more deadly, companion than Ruzsky realizes.

While The White Russian introduces readers to St. Petersburg's exotic and economic extremes--tenements of Dostoevskian squalidness, gilded ballet theaters full of garrulous royalty--it is a rather less ambitiously atmospheric story than Bradby's previous novel, 2002's The Master of Rain. Yet it boasts a similarly tumbling pace, emotionally torn and credible characters (including a "neurotic and hysterical" Tsarina Alexandra), and twists and dubious allegiances enough to leave readers wondering at Ruzsky's solution until the closing pages. At once a chilling crime yarn and a cautionary tale about the sometimes painful exigencies of love, The White Russian is a literary cocktail with a decided kick. --J. Kingston Pierce -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Gebundene Ausgabe .


Praise for The Master of Rain
“Exotic Shanghai of 1926…has been enterprisingly summoned by Mr. Bradby. In this ambitious, atmospheric crime novel…a city on the brink is recreated with impressive diligence. The physical details are strong and the politics appropriately ominous. Chinatown via Casablanca.”
New York Times

“Tom Bradby’s expert evocation of the hothouse atmosphere of Twenties Shanghai makes an exotic backdrop to a crackling murder mystery. This is an immensely atmostpheric, gripping detective story with just the right mixture of exoticism, violence, and romance.”
-The Times (London)

“Tense and rather lush, expertly working the wonderful setting without overplaying the cultural clash: eerily well suited to these parlous times.”
-Kirkus Reviews

"Rich, dark, atmospheric, this fine novel captures time and place perfectly... It's a great crime story that ends up in a place you won't predict ... and a great love story that you desperately hope will end up in the place you predict."
–Lee Child, bestselling author of Without Fail

“As we turn the pages and stray deeper into Tom Bradby's decadent, strangely perfumed world, we grow aware that something sinister lies just beyond the reach of our vision, something we cannot see but that we nevertheless know is there. The Master of Rain is an astonishing, haunting, masterful debut.”
–Lincoln Child, bestselling author of Utopia

“Beneath the surface of this clever book, a thrilling yarn of murder and mayhem, we find a wise, richly layered, and utterly convincing portrait of what was the most evil and fatally fascinating of all the modern world's cities. No one has managed to bring Shanghai so alive in all its ghastly splendor.”
–Simon Winchester, author of The Professor and the Madman

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Von S. Backhaus am 26. Januar 2011
Format: Taschenbuch
Three people are killed in similar manners and it is left to the main character to solve. The Russian revolution is beginning and he himself is from the Russian aristocracy. Intrigue between the Petersburg Police and the uncertain loyalist government is threaded throughout the book. The story is interesting however I think the book could be much more captivating if there was more emotion and feeling. The characters are distinguishable enough so that there isn't a complication when hearing this or that Russian name. As a matter of fact it reminds me of a shorter, less romantic, shallow version of "Dr. Zhivago"
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 29 Rezensionen
45 von 45 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
An involving thriller 21. Juni 2004
Von Alexander Gitlits - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I wasn't sure about "White Russian" when I started reading it. Historical mysteries are not the easiest books to write and, from my point of view, a novel in this genre can turn only two ways - a great one or a bad one. Also, as I am Russian, a foreigner writing about my countrys' past... well, let's just say, that some books about Russia, I've read were laughable in there depiction of the country.
Luckily, all my suspisions were proven wrong.
The book starts with two bodies found on the ice of Neva river on the first day of 1917. St. Petersburg is a frozen city on a brink of revolution. The government is in dissaray, as people think not of how to prevent a revolution, but how to save themselves when it comes. In comes Alexander "Sandro" Ruszki - the Chief Investigator. He is one of those officers, who will hunt down the truth whatever it takes. And pretty soon the trail takes him to rather high places...
But the book is not just a mystery - it's a story about people, who got caught in extraordinary moment in history - about love, honor, trust and hard choices you sometimes has to do to survive.
The recreation of the place and period is near perfect. There are some minor issues, but I don't think that any reader outside of Russia will notice them.
This is a very strong book, weaving a story around the real facts and persons. If you are interested in Russia, it can give you a good insight into its past and the Russian people.
22 von 22 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Dark Time 9. Mai 2003
Von Candace Siegle, Greedy Reader - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Some early reviewers of The White Russian complained that it was not as "atmospheric" as Tom Bradby's earlier Master of Rain, which was set in 1926 Shanghai. I have to disagree. The White Russian is an all-around better book in that it is plotted with more depth and believability than the earlier novel, and the atmospheric elements are better integrated with plot and characterization. Master of Rain was enjoyable, but The White Russian is better than that.
Bradby has set his second thriller to be published in the US in St. Petersburg, Russia, within weeks of the overthrow of Tsar Nicholas. It is New Year's 1917, dark and cold. There is little cheer. Russian troops are being slaughtered in World War I. Professional troops have been sent to the front, and only disgruntled reservists are left in the capital. There are food shortages, and the sense of unease is so great that some are willing to put a date to the explosion of revolution.
Sandro Ruzsky has just returned to Petrograd, as his city is now called, following three years of exile in Siberia. He is a detective from a noble family, which has not welcomed him home. Within a day of his return, he is on the case of two very brutal murders-a man who turns out to be an American revolutionary and a young woman who was a nanny to the Tsar's son. The search for the killer will take Ruzsky to the Tsarina's sitting room, tenements of reeking squalor, his family home, and backstage at the Imperial ballet.
The plot is tight and intricate without being ridiculously convoluted. The characters have meat and gristle. Within a very short time they will be plunged into terror and anarchy. It would be interesting to check in on Ruzsky on New Year's 1918 to see whether he or any of the other characters in The White Russian are still alive.
Although Tom Bradby does not write with the existential ache of Martin Cruz Smith, he is able to touch the underlying disquiet of a time and place. This is a very evocative and satifying thriller.
16 von 16 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A great follow-up to "The Master of Rain" 10. Juli 2004
Von Todd, compulsive reader - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
I read a lot of historical fiction. The two things that draw my attention & garner my enthusiasm are (1) authentic historical setting & details, and (2) a plot & characters more interesting than a mere "history book". In his first novel "The Master of Rain" set in 1920s Shanghai, Tom Bradby delivered on both of these in spades. As a follow-up to this impressive debut, "The White Russian" does not disappoint.
Set in St. Petersburg during the first stirrings of the Bolshevik revolution, this book rings with impressive authenticity. The detachment of the Tsar's regime, the role of the secret police, the aristocratic class & their sense of entitlement, the desperation of budding revolutionaries, all of these ring true. A great setting for a murder mystery, as the story's hero, a discredited police inspector, finds two bodies on the frozen river outside the Tsar's winter palace. As the book begins, Inspector Ruzsky has no idea the complex & twisted path his investigation will take before the killer or killers are finally revealed.
This author is a major new talent in historical fiction, & has twice now mastered all the elements of an engrossing story that transports us to another time & place. Where to next, Mr. Bradby?
6 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Zhivago-like characterizations and authentic period feel 26. Mai 2008
Von Arthur Tirrell - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
It's the winter of 1917. Russia is in the midst of a debilitating war. Food is almost non-existent. Fuel and clothing are nearly exhausted. The populace is desperate and very angry at the way the war has been botched by the Czar, and everywhere, every day, biting winds and ever-present snow threaten to freeze solid everything not able to remain in constant motion.

Into this bleak setting comes Chief St. Petersburg Police Investigator Ruzsky, scion of a well positioned and prominent Russian family, but himself only just returned from two years of vodka-sodden exile brought on by what many feel was a foolish defense of his loyal assistant, Deputy chief Investigator Pavel, after a case turned the wrong way. Now, two people have been murdered on the ice-covered river Neva, and despite the presence of the Okhrana, the Czar's secret police, it's Ruzsky's job to investigate.

Tom Bradley does an extraordinary job of re-creating pre-revolutionary Russia, and his plot is so well designed that despite its length (454 pgs) and numerous twists and turns, the story unfolds so smoothly it seems to fly past. As the suspects appear one by one, Ruzsky's brother Dmitri; Ruzsky's estranged wife Irina; Vasiliev, chief of the Okhrana; and Ruzsky's secret love Prima Ballerina Maria - someone is feeding the Okhrana information and they threaten to pre-empt the investigation, turning it toward their own mysterious ends.

But Ruzsky is known for his stubbornness and despite repeated warnings, including threats against his family, he manages never to take the full force of the opposition head on, until finally there's enough information to begin piecing together the big picture.

I enjoyed this read very much. It made a nice change of pace for me. I'd recommend it to anyone who enjoys descriptive and evocative characterizations wrapped around a strong mystery.

Art Tirrell is the author of the 2007 adventure novel The Secret Ever Keeps.

"...portrayal of Jake as a man who rises from poverty to a position of wealth, the power wealth can buy, and the self-destruction it causes is superb." - Historical Novel Review (2008)
5 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Quick Read with Substance 11. Februar 2004
Von kjp - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I picked this book up when I was at the library and was interested because I liked the setting (Russia, 1917) and thought it sounded interesting. It was fantastic! Here's why:
The plot moved at a nice pace. Characters were developed, but not too much where you got bored or couldn't remember who's who. The author gave you as much information as you needed to keep things moving. He let you learn about characters through their interactions with other characters instead of going into long, drawn out descriptions.
There are a few twists and turns. Enough to keep you going, but somewhat predictable at times. Classic themes relating to love, class, family relationships and wealth are peppered throughout.
Physical settings are given their due. The reader gets a good idea of the divide between upper and lower classes in Imperial Russia in terms of physical comforts and conditions. The reader also gets an image of how large and diverse Russia is/was and also how divided it was.
I would have given it 5 stars if it wasn't for the ending. I'm not going to say what I expected or would have liked to see. Suffice to say, the book just ends. It ends well enough to leave you thinking about a few things, but not where you feel like there was a good amount of resolution.
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