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Bill KellerMr. Colton is not the first to undertake Yeltsin's redemption. Leon Aron's Yeltsin: A Revolutionary Life took up the case for Yeltsin in 2000, as his presidency was petering out, and his popularity was at a low ebb. But Mr. Colton has used the extra time to excellent effect. He has mined declassified Kremlin transcripts; fact-checked many memoirs; conducted extensive interviews with participants, including Yeltsin, shortly before his death last year; and synthesized a story that anyone curious about contemporary Russia will find illuminating. And though this is densely researched scholarship, Mr. Colton writes a fluid narrative that only occasionally wanders into the briar patch of academic-speak.
—The New York Times