Search Results

Advanced Search

1 to 8 of 8 results

Sort by:

Filter by:


Article Types


Tolstoy’s Daughter

Gabriele Annan, 1 April 1982

Out of the Past 
by Alexandra Tolstoy.
Columbia, December 1981, 9780231051002
Show More
Show More
... Alexandra Tolstoy died in 1979. Except for Vanechka, who died in 1895 when he was seven, she was Tolstoy’s youngest child. She was also his close companion and secretary in the last years of his life. ‘The first and best period of my life was with my father. It lasted 26 years – perhaps only six or eight conscious years, and perhaps then not fully conscious, for it was not an easy period ...

Bad Feeling

Gabriele Annan, 5 November 1981

Sonya: The Life of Countess Tolstoy 
by Anne Edwards.
Hodder, 512 pp., £8.50, July 1981, 9780340250020
Show More
Show More
... grave. The snow falls at Astopovo too, where Anne Edwards sets her prologue and shows us Countess Tolstoy outside the stationmaster’s hut, trying to catch a glimpse of her dying husband through the curtained windows. Astopovo is probably better documented than Mayerling, a secret trysting-place where afterwards everyone strove to hush up what had ...

Russian hearts are strange

Andrew Solomon, 20 June 1996

The Romanovs: The Final Chapter 
by Robert Massie.
Cape, 308 pp., £17.99, November 1995, 0 224 04192 4
Show More
The Fall of the Romanovs: Political Dreams and Personal Struggles in a Time of Revolution 
by Mark Steinberg and Vladimir Khrustalev.
Yale, 444 pp., £18.50, November 1995, 0 300 06557 4
Show More
Show More
... much fanned by Massie, and especially by his account of the Tsar and his family in Nicholas and Alexandra. Although his version of events obsessively overemphasises the significance of the Tsarevich’s haemophilia and of Rasputin, it leaves you half in love with the Romanovs, clear about the ways in which they brought about their own demise, yet sad that ...

A Soft Pear

Tom Crewe: Totally Tourgenueff, 21 April 2022

A Nest of Gentlefolk and Other Stories 
by Ivan Turgenev, translated by Jessie Coulson.
Riverrun, 568 pp., £9.99, April 2020, 978 1 5294 0405 0
Show More
Love and Youth: Essential Stories 
by Ivan Turgenev, translated by Nicolas Pasternak Slater and Maya Slater.
Pushkin, 222 pp., £12, October 2020, 978 1 78227 601 2
Show More
Show More
... Tolstoys and, at 63, performed the can-can for the children. ‘Turgenev – the can-can. Sad,’ Tolstoy wrote in his diary. Most of his European friends, by contrast, delighted in his lack of grandeur. ‘Adorable’ was Henry James’s word for him; he was ‘the most approachable, the most practicable, the least unsafe man of genius it has been my fortune ...

Blood Relations

J.I.M. Stewart, 1 December 1983

Diversity and Depth in Fiction: Selected Critical Writings of Angus Wilson 
edited by Kerry McSweeny.
Secker, 303 pp., £15, August 1983, 0 436 57610 4
Show More
Show More
... one another, each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.’ The second part, at least, of Tolstoy’s celebrated dictum is borne out by Angus Wilson’s fiction, which deals largely in families, and this with a rich diversity through a long series of books. Sir Angus shuffles the cards brilliantly, but Unhappy Families remains the name of the ...

Rogue’s Paradise

R.W. Johnson: The Russians and the Anglo-Boer War by Apollon Davidson and Irina Filatova, 16 July 1998

The Russians and the Anglo-Boer War 
by Apollon Davidson and Irina Filatova.
Human and Rousseau/Combined Book Services, 287 pp., £17.99, June 1998, 0 7981 3804 1
Show More
Show More
... scuttled away; Russia was in no position to take on Britain without their help; and the Tsarina Alexandra had her doubts, which was not so surprising given that, like the Kaiser, she was Queen Victoria’s grandchild – and in regular contact with her grandmother. The enthusiasm of the Russian public for the Boer cause knew no such ...

Pipe down back there!

Terry Castle: The Willa Cather Wars, 14 December 2000

Willa Cather and the Politics of Criticism 
by Joan Acocella.
Nebraska, 127 pp., £13.50, August 2000, 0 8032 1046 9
Show More
Show More
... ways in which Cather – in Acocella’s view the only American novelist besides James to rival Tolstoy and Flaubert for beauty of style and moral depth – had been manhandled by contemporary academic critics. The story Acocella told was one of noble articulation – Cather’s poised, pared-down imaginative utterance – overwhelmed by idiotic ...

The Unstoppable Upward

James Wolcott: ‘The Life of Saul Bellow’, 24 January 2019

The Life of Saul Bellow: Love and Strife, 1965-2005 
by Zachary Leader.
Cape, 864 pp., £35, November 2018, 978 0 224 10188 2
Show More
Show More
... on a front row seat for his acceptance speech, then dozed off several times. His then wife Alexandra’s mother was a competitive pain. His son Dan, aged 12, kept ordering room service, running up the tab. The ‘family circus’, as Bellow called it, culminated in a luncheon in his honour hosted at the country house of his Swedish publisher. At the ...

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

Sign up to our newsletter

For highlights from the latest issue, our archive and the blog, as well as news, events and exclusive promotions.

Newsletter Preferences