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Travels in Siberia

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Travels in Siberia Cover

ISBN13: 9780374278724
ISBN10: 0374278725
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A Dazzling Russian travelogue from the bestselling author of Great Plains

In his astonishing new work, Ian Frazier, one of our greatest and most entertaining storytellers, trains his perceptive, generous eye on Siberia, the storied expanse of Asiatic Russia whose grim renown is but one explanation among hundreds for the regions fascinating, enduring appeal. In Travels in Siberia, Frazier reveals Siberias role in history—its science, economics, and politics—with great passion and enthusiasm, ensuring that well never think about it in the same way again.

With great empathy and epic sweep, Frazier tells the stories of Siberias most famous exiles, from the well-known—Dostoyevsky, Lenin (twice), Stalin (numerous times)—to the lesser known (like Natalie Lopukhin, banished by the empress for copying her dresses) to those who experienced unimaginable suffering in Siberian camps under the Soviet regime, forever immortalized by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn in The Gulag Archipelago.

Travels in Siberia is also a unique chronicle of Russia since the end of the Soviet Union, a personal account of adventures among Russian friends and acquaintances, and, above all, a unique, captivating, totally Frazierian take on what he calls the “amazingness” of Russia—a country that, for all its tragic history, somehow still manages to be funny. Travels in Siberia will undoubtedly take its place as one of the twenty-first centurys indispensable contributions to the travel-writing genre.

Review:

"Drawn to what he calls 'the incomplete grandiosity of Russia, Frazier's extraordinary work combines personal travelogue with in-depth history and gives readers a firsthand account of a place most will never see: Siberia. After 16 years of research, five trips to Siberia and more to western Russia, Frazier (Lamentations of the Father) recounts his obsession with the inhospitable place that doesn't officially exist: 'no political or territorial entity has Siberia in its name.' From the Mongol hordes that galloped across the steppes to the Soviet labor camps that killed millions, he intersperses the vast region's history with his own visits. Determined to immerse himself in Russian--and particularly Siberian--culture, Frazier embarks on a drive eastward across the tundra in the summer of 2001, accompanied by two guides. Seeing such sites as Irkutsk, the onetime 'Paris of Siberia,' Frazier and his companions travel 9,000 miles from the Baltic Sea to the Pacific in five weeks and two days, arriving on September 11. Since he hadn't felt Siberia's renowned bone-chilling cold, Frazier returned for a month in March of 2005, this time starting in the Pacific port of Vladivostok and traveling east to west. Part long-gestating love letter, part historical record of a place shrouded in mystery, this is Frazier at his best. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)

Synopsis:

The bestselling author of "Great Plains" delivers a dazzling Russian travelogue in which he trains his eye for unforgettable detail on Siberia. He explores many aspects of this storied, often grim region and writes about the geography, the resources, the natives people, the history, the 40-below midwinter afternoons, and even the bugs. (Foreign Travel)

Synopsis:

More than just a travelogue, Travels in Siberia is also an account of Russia since the end of the Soviet Union and a personal reflection on the all-around amazingness of Russia, a country that still somehow manages to be funny.

Synopsis:

One of the most acclaimed travel writers of our time turns his unflinching eye on an American South too often overlooked.

Synopsis:

New York Times Book Review Notable Book of the Year

A Boston Globe Best Book of 2010

A Christian Science Monitor Best Book of 2010

A San Francisco Chronicle Top 10 Books of 2010

A Washington Post Best Book of the Year

A Kansas City Star 100 Best Books of 2010

A St. Louis Post-Dispatch Best of 2010

In this astonishing new work from one of our greatest and most entertaining storytellers, Ian Frazier trains his perceptive, generous eye on Siberia. With great passion and enthusiasm, he reveals Siberias role in history—its science, economics, and politics—and tells the stories of its most famous exiles, such as Dostoyevsky, Lenin, and Stalin. At the same time, Frazier draws a unique portrait of Russia since the end of the Soviet Union, and gives a personal account of adventure among Russian friends and acquaintances. A unique, captivating, totally Frazierian take on what he calls the “amazingness” of Russia—Travels in Siberia is “a masterpiece of nonfiction writing—tragic, bizarre, and funny” (San Francisco Chronicle).

Synopsis:

A Dazzling Russian travelogue from the bestselling author of Great Plains

In Travels in Siberia, Ian Frazier trains his eye for unforgettable detail on Siberia, that vast expanse of Asiatic Russia. He explores many aspects of this storied, often grim region, which takes up one-seventh of the land on earth. He writes about the geography, the resources, the native peoples, the history, the forty-below midwinter afternoons, the bugs.

The book brims with Mongols, half-crazed Orthodox archpriests, fur seekers, ambassadors of the czar bound for Peking, tea caravans, German scientists, American prospectors, intrepid English nurses, and prisoners and exiles of every kind—from Natalie Lopukhin, banished by the czarina for copying her dresses; to the noble Decembrist revolutionaries of the 1820s; to the young men and women of the Peoples Will movement whose fondest hope was to blow up the czar; to those who met still-ungraspable suffering and death in the Siberian camps during Soviet times.

More than just a historical travelogue, Travels in Siberia is also an account of Russia since the end of the Soviet Union and a personal reflection on the all-around amazingness of Russia, a country that still somehow manages to be funny. Siberian travel books have been popular since the thirteenth century, when monks sent by the pope went east to find the Great Khan and wrote about their journeys. Travels in Siberia will take its place as the twenty-first centurys indispensable contribution to the genre.

About the Author

Ian Frazier is the author of Great Plains, The Fishs Eye, On the Rez, and Family, as well as Coyote v. Acme and Dating Your Mom, all published by FSG. A frequent contributor to The New Yorker, he lives in Montclair, New Jersey.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 4 comments:

myriah, February 2, 2011 (view all comments by myriah)
Illustrations coupled with a narrative laced with historical detail, Travels in Siberia is a fascinating read. Frazier details his multiple journeys to and throughout Russia and greater Siberia. There's a lot to learn and appreciate in reading! Great travel writing...this is more than Frazier's personal epistle on his trips.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
dogofthesouth, January 26, 2011 (view all comments by dogofthesouth)
In Travels in Siberia, Ian Frazier says "Travel, like much else in life, can be more fun to read about than do." Over the course of 471 pages he proves this admirably. It's a great piece of travel writing and belongs on the shelf with the finest pieces in this genre. The book details several trips Frazier made in Siberia, though the bulk of it tells of a car trip he made from St. Petersburg to Vladivostok in 2001 with two Russian guides, Sergei Lunev and Vladimir Chunak. Along the way he provides information about Siberia's labor camps, famous Russian exiles, and the Siberian sable trade, as well as capsule histories of the Decembrists, the Mongols, and a short biography of George Kennan, author of Tent Life in Siberia. Frazier is so convincing that by the end you'll wish to have made the trip yourself despite what he tells you about the roads, Siberian mosquitoes ("They laugh at organic-based repellents") and the restrooms (the last a true horror for us squeamish Americans). But for those of us who will never get to go, this is the next best thing. Frazier manages it with (for the most part)good humor and resilience.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 1 readers found this comment helpful)
Marina Antropow Cramer, January 26, 2011 (view all comments by Marina Antropow Cramer)
An illuminating view of one of the least known and most misunderstood places on earth. Frazier's account of his five trips to the Russian north is rich with history, full of personal anecdotes and stitched with a sly humor that portrays the inscrutable, occasionally irritating, sometimes infuriating Russians without ridicule or malice. Thoroughly enjoyable armchair travel; good, good reading.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 4 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780374278724
Author:
Frazier, Ian
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Author:
Theroux, Paul
Subject:
Russia
Subject:
Essays & Travelogues
Subject:
Travel-Russia
Subject:
United States - South - General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20150929
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
A-&#8221; <I>&amp;#8212;</I><I>Entertainment Weekl
Language:
English
Illustrations:
16 CDs, 20.5 hours
Pages:
384
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.5 in

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Related Subjects


Travel » Russia and Independent States » Russia
Travel » Travel Writing » Asia
Travel » Travel Writing » General

Travels in Siberia Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$14.50 In Stock
Product details 384 pages Farrar Straus Giroux - English 9780374278724 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Drawn to what he calls 'the incomplete grandiosity of Russia, Frazier's extraordinary work combines personal travelogue with in-depth history and gives readers a firsthand account of a place most will never see: Siberia. After 16 years of research, five trips to Siberia and more to western Russia, Frazier (Lamentations of the Father) recounts his obsession with the inhospitable place that doesn't officially exist: 'no political or territorial entity has Siberia in its name.' From the Mongol hordes that galloped across the steppes to the Soviet labor camps that killed millions, he intersperses the vast region's history with his own visits. Determined to immerse himself in Russian--and particularly Siberian--culture, Frazier embarks on a drive eastward across the tundra in the summer of 2001, accompanied by two guides. Seeing such sites as Irkutsk, the onetime 'Paris of Siberia,' Frazier and his companions travel 9,000 miles from the Baltic Sea to the Pacific in five weeks and two days, arriving on September 11. Since he hadn't felt Siberia's renowned bone-chilling cold, Frazier returned for a month in March of 2005, this time starting in the Pacific port of Vladivostok and traveling east to west. Part long-gestating love letter, part historical record of a place shrouded in mystery, this is Frazier at his best. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
"Synopsis" by , The bestselling author of "Great Plains" delivers a dazzling Russian travelogue in which he trains his eye for unforgettable detail on Siberia. He explores many aspects of this storied, often grim region and writes about the geography, the resources, the natives people, the history, the 40-below midwinter afternoons, and even the bugs. (Foreign Travel)
"Synopsis" by ,
More than just a travelogue, Travels in Siberia is also an account of Russia since the end of the Soviet Union and a personal reflection on the all-around amazingness of Russia, a country that still somehow manages to be funny.
"Synopsis" by ,
One of the most acclaimed travel writers of our time turns his unflinching eye on an American South too often overlooked.
"Synopsis" by ,
New York Times Book Review Notable Book of the Year

A Boston Globe Best Book of 2010

A Christian Science Monitor Best Book of 2010

A San Francisco Chronicle Top 10 Books of 2010

A Washington Post Best Book of the Year

A Kansas City Star 100 Best Books of 2010

A St. Louis Post-Dispatch Best of 2010

In this astonishing new work from one of our greatest and most entertaining storytellers, Ian Frazier trains his perceptive, generous eye on Siberia. With great passion and enthusiasm, he reveals Siberias role in history&#8212;its science, economics, and politics&#8212;and tells the stories of its most famous exiles, such as Dostoyevsky, Lenin, and Stalin. At the same time, Frazier draws a unique portrait of Russia since the end of the Soviet Union, and gives a personal account of adventure among Russian friends and acquaintances. A unique, captivating, totally Frazierian take on what he calls the “amazingness” of Russia&#8212;Travels in Siberia is “a masterpiece of nonfiction writing&#8212;tragic, bizarre, and funny” (San Francisco Chronicle).

"Synopsis" by ,

A Dazzling Russian travelogue from the bestselling author of Great Plains

In Travels in Siberia, Ian Frazier trains his eye for unforgettable detail on Siberia, that vast expanse of Asiatic Russia. He explores many aspects of this storied, often grim region, which takes up one-seventh of the land on earth. He writes about the geography, the resources, the native peoples, the history, the forty-below midwinter afternoons, the bugs.

The book brims with Mongols, half-crazed Orthodox archpriests, fur seekers, ambassadors of the czar bound for Peking, tea caravans, German scientists, American prospectors, intrepid English nurses, and prisoners and exiles of every kind&#8212;from Natalie Lopukhin, banished by the czarina for copying her dresses; to the noble Decembrist revolutionaries of the 1820s; to the young men and women of the Peoples Will movement whose fondest hope was to blow up the czar; to those who met still-ungraspable suffering and death in the Siberian camps during Soviet times.

More than just a historical travelogue, Travels in Siberia is also an account of Russia since the end of the Soviet Union and a personal reflection on the all-around amazingness of Russia, a country that still somehow manages to be funny. Siberian travel books have been popular since the thirteenth century, when monks sent by the pope went east to find the Great Khan and wrote about their journeys. Travels in Siberia will take its place as the twenty-first centurys indispensable contribution to the genre.

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