Stalin's Children: Three Generations of Love, War, and Survival

Stalin's Children: Three Generations of Love, War, and Survival

by Owen Matthews

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Overview

On a mid-summer day in 1937, a car pulled up to the house of the Bibikov family in Chernigov in the heart of the Ukraine. Boris, the father, kissed his two daughters and wife goodbye and disappeared inside the car. His family never saw him again. His wife would later vanish, leaving the young Lyudmila and Lenina alone to drift across the vast Russian landscape as the Wehrmacht advanced in WWII. In the early 1960s Owen Matthews' father, Mervyn, moved to Moscow to work for the British embassy after a childhood in Wales dreaming of Russia. He fell in with the KGB, and in love with Lyudmila, and before he could disentangle himself from the former he was ordered to leave the country. For the next six years, Mervyn tried desperately to get Lyudmila out of Russia, and when he finally succeeded they married. Decades on from these events, their son, now Newsweek's bureau chief in Moscow, pieces together the tangled threads of his family's past and present-the extraordinary files that record the life and death of his grandfather at the hands of Stalin's secret police; his mother's and aunt's perilous journey to adulthood; his parents' Cold War love affair and the magnet that has drawn him back to the Russia-to present an indelible portrait of the country over the past seven decades and an unforgettable memoir about how we struggle to define ourselves in opposition to our ancestry only to find ourselves aligning with it.


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780802777621
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Publication date: 07/23/2010
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 873,710
File size: 523 KB

About the Author

Owen Matthews was born in London and spent part of his childhood in America. He studied Modern History at Oxford University before beginning his career as a journalist in Bosnia. In 1995 he accepted a job at The Moscow Times, a daily English-language newspaper. He also freelanced for a number of publications including the Times, the Spectator and the Independent. In 1997, he became a correspondent at Newsweek magazine in Moscow where he covered the second Chechen war, as well as politics and society. Owen was also one of the first journalists to witness the start of the U.S. bombing in the Panjshir Valley in Afghanistan, 2001, and went on to cover the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Owen is currently Newsweek's bureau chief in Moscow, where he lives with his wife and two children.
Owen Matthews studied Modern History at Oxford University before beginning his career as a journalist in Bosnia. He has written for the Moscow Times, The Times, the Spectator and the Independent. In 1997, he became a correspondent at Newsweek magazine in Moscow where he covered the second Chechen war, Afghanistan, Iraq, and the conflict in Eastern Ukraine. His first book on Russian history, Stalin's Children, was translated into 28 languages and shortlisted for The Guardian First Books Award and France's Prix Medicis.
Owen's first book on Russian history was Stalin's Children, a family memoir, which was published to great critical acclaim in 2008. The book was shortlisted for the Guardian First Book Award and the Orwell Prize for political writing, and selected as one of the Books of the Year by the Sunday Times, Sunday Telegraph and the Spectator. It has been translated into twenty-eight languages and was shortlisted for France's Medici Prize and French Elle Magazine's Grand Prix Litteraire, as well as being selected as one of the FNAC chain's twenty featured titles for the Rentree Litteraire of 2009.

Owen is currently a contributing editor for Newsweek magazine, based in Istanbul and Moscow.

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