fivemack (fivemack) wrote,

A marvellous curiosity

On the page here, you will find a link to an English translation of Kirill Eskov's Последний кольценосец 'The Last Ringbearer'.

I've read very little Russian fantasy - four volumes of the Night Watch and Monday Begins on Saturday - but I'd say from almost-infinite ignorance that this definitely belongs in that vein. It's set in Middle Earth, but a Middle Earth that has very broad sweeps of the Soviet Union in its geography (orcs portrayed as nomads from something not unlike the Kazakh desert, the incompetent irrigation of Mordor 'in a sincere belief that the quality of irrigation is determined by the number of cubic furlongs of earth moved'), and something in the attitudes of its characters that I recognise fondly from Red Plenty. I've spent three hours reading it when I could have been finishing German Genius (a rather good, though large enough to require special architecture of pillows and blankets for reading in bed, thousand-page history of German thought from Frederick II to the end of Weimar), and regret not a moment.
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