Poetry Madness
 
 

Recently Viewed clear list


Interviews | April 8, 2014

Shawn Donley: IMG Gabrielle Zevin: The Powells.com Interview



Gabrielle ZevinThe American Booksellers Association collects nominations from bookstores all over the country for favorite forthcoming titles. The Storied Life of... Continue »
  1. $17.47 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

    The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry

    Gabrielle Zevin 9781616203214

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$13.95
Used Hardcover
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
2 Burnside Literature- A to Z

City of Thieves: A Novel

by

City of Thieves: A Novel Cover

ISBN13: 9780670018703
ISBN10: 0670018708
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

Only 2 left in stock at $13.95!

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

As wise and funny as it is thrilling and original — the story of two young men on an impossible adventure.

A writer visits his retired grandparents in Florida to document their experience during the infamous siege of Leningrad. His grandmother won't talk about it, but his grandfather reluctantly consents. The result is the captivating odyssey of two young men trying to survive against desperate odds.

Lev Beniov considers himself "built for deprivation." He's small, smart, and insecure, a Jewish virgin too young for the army, who spends his nights working as a volunteer firefighter with friends from his building. When a dead German paratrooper lands in his street, Lev is caught looting the body and dragged to jail, fearing for his life. He shares his cell with the charismatic and grandiose Kolya, a handsome young soldier arrested on desertion charges. Instead of the standard bullet in the back of the head, Lev and Kolya are given a shot at saving their own lives by complying with an outrageous directive: secure a dozen eggs for a powerful colonel to use in his daughter's wedding cake. In a city cut off from all supplies and suffering unbelievable deprivation, Lev and Kolya embark on a hunt to find the impossible. A search that takes them through the dire lawlessness of Leningrad and the devastated surrounding countryside creates an unlikely bond between this earnest, lust-filled teenager and an endearing lothario with the gifts of a conman. Set within the monumental events of history, City of Thieves is an intimate coming-of-age tale with an utterly contemporary feel for how boys become men.

Review:

"Author and screenwriter Benioff follows up The 25th Hour with this hard-to-put-down novel based on his grandfather's stories about surviving WWII in Russia. Having elected to stay in Leningrad during the siege, 17-year-old Lev Beniov is caught looting a German paratrooper's corpse. The penalty for this infraction (and many others) is execution. But when Colonel Grechko confronts Lev and Kolya, a Russian army deserter also facing execution, he spares them on the condition that they acquire a dozen eggs for the colonel's daughter's wedding cake. Their mission exposes them to the most ghoulish acts of the starved populace and takes them behind enemy lines to the Russian countryside. There, Lev and Kolya take on an even more daring objective: to kill the commander of the local occupying German forces. A wry and sympathetic observer of the devastation around him, Lev is an engaging and self-deprecating narrator who finds unexpected reserves of courage at the crucial moment and forms an unlikely friendship with Kolya, a flamboyant ladies' man who is coolly reckless in the face of danger. Benioff blends tense adventure, a bittersweet coming-of-age and an oddly touching buddy narrative to craft a smart crowd-pleaser." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"[G]lorious...a wild action-packed quest, and much else besides....This gut-churning thriller will sweep you along and, with any luck, propel Benioff into bestseller land." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)

Review:

"With deftly sly humor, respect for the agony of warfare, and dialog that elevates the boys-to-men story beyond its typical male ribaldry, this second novel by screenwriter Benioff deserves a bright spotlight..." Library Journal (Starred Review)

Review:

"[S]plendid....By listening carefully — and making the rest up — Benioff has produced a funny, sad, and thrilling novel. (Grade: A-)" Entertainment Weekly

Review:

"[A] modern masterpiece, a work that is both heartstopping and heartbreaking and one worthy of occupying the same shelf as wartime classics like Catch-22 and Slaughterhouse-Five." BookReporter.com

Review:

"[W]ithout our ability to be moved by [Lev's] predicament, this well-crafted tale about the endless opportunities for suffering weakens into a harmless entertainment." Los Angeles Times

Review:

"[A] book rife with ironies and a kind of existential absurdity." Dallas Morning News

Review:

"[I]t ends up packing much more of a punch than initially expected." Denver Post

Review:

"A high-spirited adventure, Benioff's second novel...takes more than a little poetic license. When Benioff tells his grandfather that a few things don't make sense in the narrative, his reply: You're a writer. Make it up." Booklist'

Synopsis:

A writer visits his retired grandparents in Florida to document their experience during the infamous siege of Leningrad. His grandmother won't talk about it, but his grandfather reluctantly consents. The result is the captivating odyssey of two young men trying to survive against desperate odds.

Synopsis:

From the critically acclaimed author of The 25th Hour and When the Nines Roll Over, a captivating novel about war, courage, survival — and a remarkable friendship that ripples across a lifetime.

During the Nazis’ brutal siege of Leningrad, Lev Beniov is arrested for looting and thrown into the same cell as a handsome deserter named Kolya. Instead of being executed, Lev and Kolya are given a shot at saving their own lives by complying with an outrageous directive: secure a dozen eggs for a powerful Soviet colonel to use in his daughter’s wedding cake. In a city cut off from all supplies and suffering unbelievable deprivation, Lev and Kolya embark on a hunt through the dire lawlessness of Leningrad and behind enemy lines to find the impossible.

By turns insightful and funny, thrilling and terrifying, City of Thieves is a gripping, cinematic World War II adventure and an intimate coming-of-age story with an utterly contemporary feel for how boys become men.

About the Author

David Benioff is an author and screenwriter. His first novel, The 25th Hour, was adapted into a popular feature film. His short story collection When the Nines Roll Over received critical acclaim.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

Roseamber R. Sumner, October 13, 2008 (view all comments by Roseamber R. Sumner)
City of Thieves hurled me into WWII Russia at the time of the siege of St. Petersburg. One short week in the life of a scrawny 17 year old Jewish boy held me spellbound, barely breathing. I found myself wondering how anyone in Russia survived the war at all. But despite details of starvation and terrifying circumstances, there is humor in this story; comradeship, love, lust, introspection, courage, as well as the hatred and evil that stands out so sharply in wartime. I learned more from this historical fiction thriller than I would have retained if I were reading historical non-fiction. This is a coming of age story of such intensity and refinement that one comes away finally feeling wrung out and yet deeply satisfied at being led through such a full story, so superbly told.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(7 of 10 readers found this comment helpful)
Liza, August 24, 2008 (view all comments by Liza)
Set during the 1941 winter seige of St. Petersburg, an unlikely duo find themselves in prison, only to be released the next day with a special mission: to find a dozen eggs for a wedding cake. If they fail their mission, they will be executed. This is no easy task in a city of starving people who have long killed family pets and are now tearing books apart for the protein in the binding glue. A story of terror, bravery, friendship and humor, this was a fabulous read.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(9 of 19 readers found this comment helpful)
Angus, August 9, 2008 (view all comments by Angus)
Perhaps it would have been better for this reviewer to have omitted her reference to having been fulfilled at the conclusion of Scott Smith's silence when his "The Ruins" was published: I can't think of a worse example. Smith's "A Simple Plan" is a thriller of such genius that it was lauded by both readers, viewers of the film based on it, and critics of both disciplines; "The Ruins" is a disaster in each of these areas, thus providing a major disappointment for Smith's fans.

Hopefully, Benioff will fare much better than Smith--at least he's got some good reviews to show for it.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(36 of 52 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 3 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780670018703
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
Benioff, David
Publisher:
Plume
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Survival
Subject:
History
Subject:
Wilderness survival
Subject:
Domestic fiction
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Hardcover
Publication Date:
May 15, 2008
Binding:
Hardcover
Grade Level:
from 12
Language:
English
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
8 x 5.42 x 0.6 in 0.49 lb
Age Level:
from 18

Other books you might like

  1. Beautiful Children Used Trade Paper $2.50
  2. Lush Life
    Used Trade Paper $2.25
  3. The 25th Hour Used Trade Paper $6.95
  4. When the Nines Roll Over: And Other... Used Trade Paper $7.50
  5. Child 44: A Novel
    Used Hardcover $2.50
  6. The Abstinence Teacher: A Novel
    Used Hardcover $2.50

Related Subjects

» BLOCKED
» Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

City of Thieves: A Novel Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$13.95 In Stock
Product details 272 pages Plume - English 9780670018703 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Author and screenwriter Benioff follows up The 25th Hour with this hard-to-put-down novel based on his grandfather's stories about surviving WWII in Russia. Having elected to stay in Leningrad during the siege, 17-year-old Lev Beniov is caught looting a German paratrooper's corpse. The penalty for this infraction (and many others) is execution. But when Colonel Grechko confronts Lev and Kolya, a Russian army deserter also facing execution, he spares them on the condition that they acquire a dozen eggs for the colonel's daughter's wedding cake. Their mission exposes them to the most ghoulish acts of the starved populace and takes them behind enemy lines to the Russian countryside. There, Lev and Kolya take on an even more daring objective: to kill the commander of the local occupying German forces. A wry and sympathetic observer of the devastation around him, Lev is an engaging and self-deprecating narrator who finds unexpected reserves of courage at the crucial moment and forms an unlikely friendship with Kolya, a flamboyant ladies' man who is coolly reckless in the face of danger. Benioff blends tense adventure, a bittersweet coming-of-age and an oddly touching buddy narrative to craft a smart crowd-pleaser." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "[G]lorious...a wild action-packed quest, and much else besides....This gut-churning thriller will sweep you along and, with any luck, propel Benioff into bestseller land."
"Review" by , "With deftly sly humor, respect for the agony of warfare, and dialog that elevates the boys-to-men story beyond its typical male ribaldry, this second novel by screenwriter Benioff deserves a bright spotlight..."
"Review" by , "[S]plendid....By listening carefully — and making the rest up — Benioff has produced a funny, sad, and thrilling novel. (Grade: A-)"
"Review" by , "[A] modern masterpiece, a work that is both heartstopping and heartbreaking and one worthy of occupying the same shelf as wartime classics like Catch-22 and Slaughterhouse-Five."
"Review" by , "[W]ithout our ability to be moved by [Lev's] predicament, this well-crafted tale about the endless opportunities for suffering weakens into a harmless entertainment."
"Review" by , "[A] book rife with ironies and a kind of existential absurdity."
"Review" by , "[I]t ends up packing much more of a punch than initially expected."
"Review" by , "A high-spirited adventure, Benioff's second novel...takes more than a little poetic license. When Benioff tells his grandfather that a few things don't make sense in the narrative, his reply: You're a writer. Make it up." Booklist'
"Synopsis" by , A writer visits his retired grandparents in Florida to document their experience during the infamous siege of Leningrad. His grandmother won't talk about it, but his grandfather reluctantly consents. The result is the captivating odyssey of two young men trying to survive against desperate odds.
"Synopsis" by ,
From the critically acclaimed author of The 25th Hour and When the Nines Roll Over, a captivating novel about war, courage, survival — and a remarkable friendship that ripples across a lifetime.

During the Nazis’ brutal siege of Leningrad, Lev Beniov is arrested for looting and thrown into the same cell as a handsome deserter named Kolya. Instead of being executed, Lev and Kolya are given a shot at saving their own lives by complying with an outrageous directive: secure a dozen eggs for a powerful Soviet colonel to use in his daughter’s wedding cake. In a city cut off from all supplies and suffering unbelievable deprivation, Lev and Kolya embark on a hunt through the dire lawlessness of Leningrad and behind enemy lines to find the impossible.

By turns insightful and funny, thrilling and terrifying, City of Thieves is a gripping, cinematic World War II adventure and an intimate coming-of-age story with an utterly contemporary feel for how boys become men.

spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and eBooks — here at Powells.com.