Translated by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky
The Belarusian author Svetlana Alexievich’s first book, originally published in Russian in 1985, is now available in English translation. It tells the stories of Soviet women who fought on the front lines of the Second World War, but whose narratives were effaced in public memory and unrecorded in history books. Through long, intimate interviews and oral narratives conducted nearly forty years after the war, Alexievich gets women to open up about their experiences. The book, she claims, is not a history of a war, but a history of feelings.
Penguin UK, 384 pages, £12.99