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Diary of an Invasion

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The fact that the crimes of the Gulag… are not a historical trauma for Russia today proves that Russia has not yet recovered from the past — Andrey Kurkov

Diary of an Invasion — Mountain Leopard Press

The first volume of his Diary Of An Invasion begins on December 29, 2021, with "Goodbye Delta! Hello Omicron!" - if only Covid was all Ukraine had to worry about - and ends in early July, before the recent successes of Ukraine's army, to whose soldiers Kurkov has dedicated the book. We have a small garden and we hope that we can plant potatoes and carrots for ourselves. For us it is a hobby, but what kind of hobby can you have during a war? If the Ukrainian army manages to drive the Russian military away from our region, we will try to return to Lazarevka, to live a normal life again. Although the term "normal life" now seems but a myth, an illusion. In actuality, there can be no normal life for my generation now. Every war leaves a deep wound in the soul of a person. It remains a part of life even when the war itself has ended. I have the feeling that the war is now inside me. It is like knowing that you live with a tumour that cannot be removed. You cannot get away from the war. It has become a chronic, incurable disease. It can kill, or it can simply remain in the body and in the head, regularly reminding you of its presence, like a disease of the spine. I fear I will carry this war with me even if my wife and I some day go on holiday – to Montenegro or Turkey, as we once did." on big explosions, when nothing remains, no identification is possible - forever missing [entertainment center in Kremenchuk]Writing about the siege of Mariupol, Harding interviews women and children who were among thousands of civilians who sought refuge in the city’s famous theatre. At least 600 were killed on March 16th when a Russian aircraft, ignoring the word “children” painted on the roof, dropped a laser-guided bomb on the undefended building. One of Harding’s former local guides, Anatoliy, calls him repeatedly on his cell phone, across the lines of the siege, with increasingly desperate pleas for international help. His last call is wordless, just the sound of the wind. He has not been heard from since Mariupol fell to the Russians. Not all Russia is a collective Putin. The unfortunate thing is that there is within Russia no collective anti-Putin.” When war approaches your home you are left with a choice – to evacuate or accept occupation. A person starts thinking about this choice well before the first explosions are heard on the outskirts of their city or village. War is like a tornado. You can see it from afar, but you cannot easily predict where it is going next. You cannot be sure whether it will blow your house away or only pass nearby, whether it will uproot a few trees in your garden, or blow the roof off your house. And you can never be sure that you will remain alive, even if the house itself is only slightly damaged."

Diary of an Invasion by Andrey Kurkov | Waterstones Diary of an Invasion by Andrey Kurkov | Waterstones

This is the first book of Kurkov I read, although I've heard of him before as one of the few Ukrainian authors who have a presence in the g Many families also travel with other people's children, trying to make sure that all the seats in their cars are occupied. Every empty seat in a car going to the west of Ukraine is a life that was not saved."


However, this territory is complicated, too. Like millions of Ukrainians, Kurkov, who was born near Leningrad, is a native Russian speaker and part of the fascination of his book lies in its accounts of the struggle for identity within the country, something the war has made more vexed. Ukraine has, for instance, demanded that Russian culture be boycotted. But while many younger Ukrainians are enthusiastic about this idea, older people are more conservative. The council of the Pyotr Tchaikovsky conservatory in Kyiv, the country’s national music academy, recently met to discuss whether it should be renamed after the Ukrainian composer Mykola Lysenko – and eventually decided against. Meanwhile, an opera-loving friend of Kurkov’s wept at the thought of not being able ever again to hear Eugene Onegin at Kyiv opera house. I highly recommend Diary of an Invasion, especially to those unfamiliar with the history of Ukraine and Eastern Europe. I would also encourage you to first read a good history book of Ukraine. No one with the slightest interest in this war, or the nation on which it is being waged, should fail to read Andrey Kurkov' -- Dominic Lawson, Daily Mail

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