Synopses & Reviews
Pushkin's version of the historical novel in the style of Walter Scott, this final prose work also reflects his fascination with and research into Russian history of the 18th century. During the reign of Catherine the Great, the young Grinev sets out for his new career in the army and en route performs an act of kindness by giving his warm coat to a man freezing in a blizzard. This action reaps its reward when he subsequently finds himself caught up in the rebellion headed by the infamous, and strangely familiar, Pugachev. Rivalry with a fellow officer for the affections of Captain Mironov's daughter further complicates Grinev's affairs, and ultimately it is only an appeal by Masha Mironova, the eponymous captain's daughter, to the Empress herself that can unravel a tangled web.
Famous for his enormously influential poetry and plays, Alexander Pushkin is also beloved for his short stories. This collection showcases his tremendous range, which enabled him to portray the Russian people through romance, drama, and satire. The sparkling humor of the five “Tales of Belkin” contrasts with a dark fable of gambling and obsessive greed in “The Queen of Spades” and the masterful historical novella, “The Captain’s Daughter,” a story of love and betrayal set during a rebellion in the time of Catherine the Great.
Translated by Natalie Duddington and T. Keane
About the Author
Alexander Pushkin (1799-1837), known as the father of Russian literature, was descended from Russian nobility and from an African great-grandfather raised at the court of Peter the Great. Pushkin’s commitment to social reform resulted in government censorship of his work and a period of exile. He died after a fighting a duel at the age of thirty-seven.