Winner of the Modern Language Association's 2019 Lois Roth Award for a Translation of a Literary Work
Nominated for the 2020 Read Russia Prize
Fiction Finalist, Three Percent’s Best Translated Book Award 2020
At last, the Russian novelist-journalist’s mighty prequel to 'Life and Fate', his epic of the battle of Stalingrad and its aftermath, has received a definitive—and hugely powerful—English translation. A seething fresco of combat, domestic routine under siege and intellectual debate, it confirms that Grossman was the supreme bard of the second world war.
—The Economist, “Our books of the year”
One needs time and patience to read Stalingrad, but it is worth it. Moving majestically from Berlin to Moscow to the boundless Kazakh steppe . . . A multitude of lives and fates are played out against a vast panoramic history.
—Ian Thomson, Evening Standard's "Book of the Week"
Stalingrad is an epic novel, Tolstoyan in its proportions and ambition. . . . [A]n ideal historical novel for a new generation of readers.
—Time's "Must-Read Books of 2019"
In its English version, Vasily Grossman’s Stalingrad is a beautifully readable novel of considerable length, gripping from beginning to end as it moves seamlessly from the dramas of historical events to the small, intimate predicaments of family and everyday life while war is raging. Robert Chandler and Elizabeth Chandler’s historical understanding and archival research made it possible to produce a book that salvages the novel from the fate of its mangled original, censored in the process of writing, editing, and production. Thanks to this English translation, Stalingrad is repaired and made available to readers of the original in Russian and to readers of other languages as well. This translation is both a literary achievement and a contribution to scholarship.
—Modern Language Association citation for the 2019 Lois Roth Award
If you have read Grossman before, you will already very likely know that you urgently want to read Stalingrad. If you haven’t, I can only tell you that when you do read this novel, you will not only discover that you love his characters and want to stay with them — that you need them in your life as much as you need your own family and loved ones — but that at the end . . . you want to read it again.
—Julian Evans, The Daily Telegraph
This is a big event . . . [Stalingrad] gives voice to a dizzying array of experiences . . . You do feel as though you are there, wandering through those devastated streets among the starving, dead, and mad.
—Claire Allfree, Daily Mail
A dazzling prequel . . . His descriptions of battle in an industrial age are some of the most vivid ever written . . . Stalingrad is Life and Fate’s equal. It is, arguably, the richer book — shot through with human stories and a sense of life’s beauty and fragility.
—Luke Harding, The Observer
[F]ew works of literature since Homer can match the piercing, unshakably humane gaze that Grossman turns on the haggard face of war.
An extraordinary novel by war correspondent Grossman, completing, with Life and Fate, a two-volume Soviet-era rejoinder to War and Peace . . . A classic of wartime literature finally available in a comprehensive English translation that will introduce new readers to a remarkable writer.
—Kirkus, starred review
Grossman’s epic, sprawling novel from 1952 is a masterpiece of intertwined plots that cascade together in a long sequence of militaristic horror. . . . When the bombing of Stalingrad begins, Grossman cuts between viewpoints, rewinding time over and over again. A spectacular afterword details the extent of censorship the text suffered under Stalin. As a stand-alone novel, this is both gripping and enlightening, a tour de force. When considered as a whole with Life and Fate, this diptych is one of the landmark accomplishments of 20th-century literature.
—Publishers Weekly, starred review
If you could only ever read one book about war, this should probably be it.
—Valeria Paikova, Russia Beyond