ELKOST International Literary Agency

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Chronicles of Moscow ER (Notes of a Hospital Receptionist), essays, 2012

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Rights sold to: France - NOIR SUR BLANC, Russia - Vremya


Oleg Pavlov's "Notes of a Hospital Receptionist" is a documentary chronicle of writer's personal experiences from the times he has been working as a receptionist in Moscow hospital, between 1994 and 1997. Published as a book nearly sixteen years later, this diary became a lyrical epic masterpiece, earning recognition and praise of both critics and readers.

In 2012, Oleg Pavlov was awarded The Solzhenitsyn Prize, a non-governmental Russian literary award established by the Russian writer Alexander Solzhenitsyn in 1997, for “confessional prose imbued with a poetic power and compassion, for the artistic and philosophical search for meaning of human existence in most difficult circumstances, for works in which troubles of the Russian life are shown with rare moral purity and sense of tragedy, for consecutiveness and steadiness in search of truth.”

“This is my private diary which I kept for almost five years with no thought that it could later become a book, but to remember. I had a very hard time, had to earn money to survive, so I accepted a temporal job of hospital security guard. But I already knew that my destiny is to write.


For long, I didn’t dare not publish these notes, because there are a real people described in it, they have never permitted me to write about them... Now, the diary is sixteen years old, and it turns out that still, little to nothing is written about that époque, the nineties. I understood that I should fill this gap, and the most honest thing to do would be to publish my diary. It is perfectly clear now that my book, being a real evidence of the nineties, has won.” – Oleg Pavlov


One of the most exciting and powerful books appeared lately. A must read for anyone interested in modern Russian literature and modern Russian life. -- Rossiyskaya Gazeta


The book is less than a hundred and fifty pages, but its metaphysical significance is hard to underestimate. Sharp style, the words often seem to be the only correct ones. Its impossible to recount, one needs to quote all the time. -- "However" magazine


In short, staccato notes of his rather small diary Pavlov succeeds to create a universe so similar to our real life. -- "Izvestiya" newspaper


It’s like he whole of Russia has passed through this ER. -- "Moscow News"


Minimum of literature, maximum of life. -- "Literary Gazette"


Pavlov is honest to the very end when describing Russian people, not sparing even himself. -- "Private correspondent"