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St. Petersburg Noir
Cover of St. Petersburg Noir
St. Petersburg Noir
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"Fourteen uniformly strong stories in [this] outstanding noir anthology devoted to Russia's second city . . . an ideal backdrop for crime fiction."Publishers Weekly

The origins of St. Petersburg's rich noir tradition come from the city's history, urban landscape, and the weather. The freezing winds from the Baltics give rise to hopelessness, despair, and the darkest of humor. The swamps upon which the city was built cloak it in a thick haze that inspires ghostly tales and furtive behaviors.

In St. Petersburg Noir, you'll find original stories by Lena Eltang, Sergei Nosov, Alexander Kudriavstev, Andrei Kivinov, Julia Belomlinsky, Natalia Kurchatova & Ksenia Venglinskaya, Anton Chizh, Vladimir Berezin, Andrei Rubanov, Vadim Levental, Anna Solovey, Mikhail Lialin, Pavel Krusanov, and Eugene Kogan.

"The Russian soul is well suited to a style defined by dark, hard-edged moodiness in underground settings. With St. Petersburg, the tsar's 'Window on Europe,' we get European-style existential angst as well—not to mention the scary sociopolitical realities of the new Russia . . . For all sophisticated crime fiction readers." —Library Journal

"A riveting collection. An insightful 'tour' of St. Petersburg. And a spellbinding introduction to Russian literature and perspective." —Killer Nashville
"Fourteen uniformly strong stories in [this] outstanding noir anthology devoted to Russia's second city . . . an ideal backdrop for crime fiction."Publishers Weekly

The origins of St. Petersburg's rich noir tradition come from the city's history, urban landscape, and the weather. The freezing winds from the Baltics give rise to hopelessness, despair, and the darkest of humor. The swamps upon which the city was built cloak it in a thick haze that inspires ghostly tales and furtive behaviors.

In St. Petersburg Noir, you'll find original stories by Lena Eltang, Sergei Nosov, Alexander Kudriavstev, Andrei Kivinov, Julia Belomlinsky, Natalia Kurchatova & Ksenia Venglinskaya, Anton Chizh, Vladimir Berezin, Andrei Rubanov, Vadim Levental, Anna Solovey, Mikhail Lialin, Pavel Krusanov, and Eugene Kogan.

"The Russian soul is well suited to a style defined by dark, hard-edged moodiness in underground settings. With St. Petersburg, the tsar's 'Window on Europe,' we get European-style existential angst as well—not to mention the scary sociopolitical realities of the new Russia . . . For all sophisticated crime fiction readers." —Library Journal

"A riveting collection. An insightful 'tour' of St. Petersburg. And a spellbinding introduction to Russian literature and perspective." —Killer Nashville
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About the Author-
  • Julia Goumen was born in St. Petersburg, Russia, in 1977. With a PhD in English, she has been working in publishing since 2001, starting her own literary agency after three years as a foreign rights manager. Since 2006 Goumen has run the Goumen & Smirnoval Literary Agency with Natalia Smirnova. She and Smirnova were also the coeditors of Moscow Noir.

    Natalia Smirnova was born in 1978 in Moscow. After studying law and working as a lawyer, she moved to St. Petersburg to work as a foreign rights manager for a publisher. In 2006 she cofounded the Goumen & Smirnova Literary Agency, with Julia Goumen, representing Russian authors worldwid. She and Goumen were also the coeditors of Moscow Noir.

Table of Contents-
  • Brand-new stories by:
    Lena Eltang
    Sergei Nosov
    Alexander Kudriavstev
    Andrei Kivinov
    Julia Belomlinsky
    Natalia Kurchatova
    Kseniya Venglinskaya
    Evgeniy Kogan
    Anton Chizh
    Konstantin Gavrilov
    Vladimir Berezin
    Andrei Rubanov

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from July 30, 2012
    Literary agents Goumen and Smirnova, the co-editors of 2010’s Moscow Noir, offer 14 uniformly strong stories in their outstanding noir anthology devoted to Russia’s second city, St. Petersburg. With its rich if often tragic history, deep literary traditions, inspiring landscape, famous architecture, and an aging population stuffed into overcrowded “kommunalkas” (communal apartments) amid a post-Soviet decline and soaring crime rate, the city provides an ideal backdrop for crime fiction. Selections range from the gallows humor of Andre Kivinov’s “Training Day” to the gloomy realism of Lena Eltang’s “Drunk Harbor,” from the glum nihilism of Anna Solovey’s “Swift Current” to the determined heroism of Anton Chizh’s “The Nutcracker.” While few if any of the contributors will be familiar to American readers, the diversity of these skillfully crafted tales testifies to the vigor of contemporary Russian writing.

  • Library Journal

    August 1, 2012

    Begun in 2004 with Brooklyn Noir, Akashic's "Noir" series now ranges worldwide--all the way to St. Petersburg, Russia. As the editors' Moscow Noir revealed, the Russian soul is well suited to a style defined by dark, hard-edged moodiness in underground settings. With St. Petersburg, the tsar's "Window on Europe," we get European-style existential angst as well--not to mention the scary sociopolitical realities of the new Russia. Divded into three sections--"Gangsters, Soldiers, & Patriots," "A Watery Grave," and "Chasing Ghosts"--the 14 pieces here are mostly not traditional whodunits but chill-inducing slices of life, some blackly funny and some just black. In Andrei Kivinov's "Training Day," for instance, two morgue attendants go their slightly drunken Keystone Cops way, picking up dead bodies throughout the city until a recently delivered stiff suddenly sits up. Vadim Levental's mysterious "Wake Up, You're a Dead Man Now" positively breathes conspiracy, Natalia Kurchatova and Ksenia Venglinskaya's "Peau de Chagrin" shows the city's real underbelly as a lowlife reconnects with a lost daughter, and, in Alexander Kudriavtsev's "The Witching Hour," a sleazy go-getter gets one hell of a comeuppance when he picks up woman at a club. VERDICT For all sophisticated crime fiction readers.--Barbara Hoffert, Library Journal

    Copyright 2012 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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    Akashic Books (Ignition)
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