Rights sold: Russia - Olga Morozova publishing house, Slovenia - LUD, World English - Dalkey Archive Press
These essays came about in response to a question asked of contemporary writers by the magazine Znamia: "Is Gogol's creative experience relevant today (and to you personally) and, if so, how?" The answer, writes Vladislav Otroshenko, that struck him immediately consisted of two sentences: "Gogol died of literature. That is what must be known if we are to know whether Gogol's creative experience is relevant—today, tomorrow—to anyone personally."
Rights sold: France - GALLIMARD, Germany - HANSER, Hungary - MAGVETO, Italy - LA NAVE DI TESEO, Itan - HOUPAA BOOKS, Poland - WYDAWNICTWO LITERACKIE, Romania - HUMANITAS, Russia - AST, Sweden - ERSATZ, World English - GRANTA,
Ludmila Ulitskaya’s novelized screenplay Just the Plague, written in 1988 and first published in 2020, is based on real-life events when an epidemic of pneumonic plague was averted in December 1939. Three people died, but it could have claimed many more lives. Ostensibly about a medical plague, the real plague is the Stalinist police state which, with its trials, executions and banishments, had got completely out of hand. This is a hard-hitting, precise and powerful evocation of the time, with obvious relevance to the present state of Russia and the present pandemic.
The manuscript was politically unpublishable for many years, and it was only when sorting through her papers during the coronavirus lockdown that Ulitskaya...