Sergey and Marina Dyachenko are the recipients of the most prestigious literary awards in science-fiction Russia. They were honored as the European Science-fiction Society’s Best Writers of Europe in Eurocon 2005. Sergey and Marina are married and live with their daughter in Moscow.
Vita Nostraby Marina Dyachenko, Sergey Dyachenko
The heroine of the novel has been forced into a seemingly inconceivable situation. Against her will, she must enter the Institute of Special
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The words VITA NOSTRA, or “our life,” come from an old Latin student anthem Gaudeamus : “Vita nostra brevis est, Brevi finietur” or “Our life is brief, It will shortly end ..."
The heroine of the novel has been forced into a seemingly inconceivable situation. Against her will, she must enter the Institute of Special Technologies. A slightest misstep or failure at school—and the students’ loved ones pay a price. Governed by fear and coercion, Sasha will learn the meaning of the phrase "In the beginning was the word ..."
VITA NOSTRA is a thrilling journey into the deepest mysteries of existence, a dizzying adventure, an opening into a world that no one has ever described, a world that frightens and attracts the readers of the novel.
The novel combines the seemingly incongruous aspects—spectacular adventures and philosophical depth, incredible transformations and psychological accuracy, complexity of ethical issues and mundane details of urban life.
VITA NOSTRA enjoyed a considerable critical acclaim in Russia. It has received eight major literary prizes and has been named the best novel of the twenty first century in the sci-fi/fantasy genre (Prize of Prizes, Eurocon-2008, Moscow). It has been translated into several languages.
VITA NOSTRA has been optioned by Timur Bekmambetov, director and producer (NIGHT WATCH, WANTED and others).
“The Dyachenkos are quite possibly the very best modern Russian-language fiction writers working in the genre of the allegorical novel. The emotional lavishness of their prose reaches beyond boundaries. The degree of self-identification with the character that they require of their reader can be compared only with the all-encompassing feeling of love.”
—The Viva magazine
“They create an astounding world, sometimes chilling and frightening, sometimes shockingly beautiful and bizarre. The combination of two drastically different people—different in age, temperament, and previous occupations (Marina was an actress, Sergey—a psychiatrist) gives us a chance to touch the reality of miracles.”
—The Peter Book magazine
“Vita Nostra—it's a book that has the potential to become a modern classic of its genre.”
—Lev Grossman, a novelist, a senior writer and book critic for TIME magazine
“One thing is clear—Marina and Sergey Dyachenko are avidly read by both the intellectuals and those who never read. In the era of aggressive militant immorality, Marina and Sergey dared to place their money on the world created by them, the world that is fundamentally ethical. It is a world in which the victors are judged.”
—News of the Capital newspaper
"The interest in a human being, in the depths of his soul is the main theme of any work by the Dyachenkos...”
—The New World magazine
“VITA NOSTRA is a fantasy, but a fantasy so authentic that, having turned its last page, I thought that Marina and Sergey Dyachenko somehow know everything that happened to me during the first year of my adult life. I am so grateful to them for giving me another chance to relive those experiences; with all the means of cinematography at my disposal, I will do my best to convey the magic of those times.”
—Timur Bekmambetov, film director, producer
- Sergey and Marina Dyachenko
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Brilliant writing ruined by blasphemous ending "twist."
Take the world as you know it and turn it upside down. Humans and words are connected in a profound way in this amazing novel! Having just finished it, my mind still reeling from the implications in this book. Sacha, the main character, gets chosen to attend a special school (which was not easy). When she arrives she embarks on an education that challenges her entire being, she will become something she never dreamed. Read it!