A Year Without Mom follows 12-year-old Dasha through a year full of turmoil after her mother leaves for America. It is the early 1990s in Moscow, and political change is in the air. But Dasha is more worried about her own challenges as she negotiates family, friendships and school without her mother. Just as she begins to find her own feet, she gets word that she is to join her mother in America — a place that seems impossibly far from everything and everyone she loves.
One night, young Anna’s mother takes her to the ballet, and everything is changed. So begins the journey of a girl who will one day grow up to be the most famous prima ballerina of all time, inspiring legions of dancers after her: the brave, the generous, the transcendently gifted Anna Pavlova.
When Joseph Djugashvili was born the son of a poor shoemaker, few suspected he would rise to become one of the twentieth century’s most ruthless and powerful dictators. Enamored as a young man with the revolutionary politics of Lenin, he joined the underground Marxist Party and began his pursuit of power by leading strikes and demonstrations. Six times he was exiled to Siberia for his illicit activities, escaping many times despite below freezing temperatures and on one occasion an attack by a pack of wolves.
The future is often foretold in stories of the past. As families flee the Debaltseve in Eastern Ukraine in 2015, Ken Goodman’s The Smart One: A Grandfather’s Tale takes us back to families fleeing persecution in Eastern Europe at the turn of the Twentieth Century. It is a compelling story of Jewish migration to America, which begins in Smorgon, now in Belarus, a former Soviet Republic, but at the time Smorgon was in Vilnius, a district of Lithuania, and a part of the Russian Empire.
When John, a British demolitions expert, is supposedly killed blowing up a building in Siberia, his fiance Annie insists on investigating, despite being in a wheelchair, and John’s teenage sister Hayley goes along and finds that the Russian Mafia is involved.
It is late 1903, and Rachel and her family are leaving Russia to escape the murderous riots against Jews. They travel cross country on the Trans-Siberian Railway to the coast and board a ship for Shanghai. China offers refuge, but life for them there is difficult and strange. Rachel is determined to ensure her family’s survival, but does not want to give up her dreams for her future. The opportunity to write for a Jewish newspaper in Shanghai may be the solution she’s been hoping for. The story that began in the novel Rachel’s Secret continues in Rachel’s Promise and Rachel’s Hope.
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Grishka has grown up in the closed world of a puppet theater in Russia, but now that world seems to be falling apart–his best friend needs an operation, financial difficulties are forcing people out, his homosexual friend Sam, the jester, is leaving for Holland and Grishka no longer knows what role he himself is playing.
Katerina Alexandrovna, Duchess of Oldenburg, wants to be known as a doctor, not a necromancer. But Tsar Alexander III forbids women to attend medical school; his interest in Katerina extends only to her ability to raise the dead. Twice now, Katerina has helped him by using her power to thwart the forces of darkness—vampires bent on resurrecting the lich tsar Konstantin Pavlovich so that he can take what he sees as his rightful place on the throne. Katerina thought she had bound Konstantin to the Greylands, the realm of the dead, but he has found a way out. Now he is searching for the Morning Star, a sword that will allow him to command a legion of supernatural warriors.
When twelve-year-old Arcady is sent to a children’s home after his parents are declared enemies of the state in Soviet Russia, soccer becomes a way to secure extra rations, respect, and protection but it may also be his way out if he can believe in and love another person–and himself.
The Book of Olga Thunder “Sugar baby” recorded it with the words of Stella Nudolskoy, whose childhood coincided with the end of the 30’s – early 40’s in the Soviet Union. This is a very personal and poignant story of how five-year-Ale, happily growing up in a loving family, suddenly finds her daughter “an enemy of the people” and gets into a terrible, incomprehensible situation: after the arrest of their father and his mother is sent to a camp in Kyrgyzstan as CHSIR (family members traitor to the motherland) and ESR (socially dangerous elements).