HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Vie Et Destin (Le Livre de Poche) (French…
Loading...

Vie Et Destin (Le Livre de Poche) (French Edition) (original 1980; edition 2011)

by Vassili Grossman, Alexis Berelowitch (Translator), d'Anne Coldefy-Faucard (Translator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
1,608614,518 (4.33)1 / 368
Member:cr0max
Title:Vie Et Destin (Le Livre de Poche) (French Edition)
Authors:Vassili Grossman
Other authors:Alexis Berelowitch (Translator), d'Anne Coldefy-Faucard (Translator)
Info:L'Age D'Homme (2011), Edition: LGF, Mass Market Paperback, 1172 pages
Collections:Das Buchregal des Amoralisten
Rating:*****
Tags:moralism, utopianism

Work details

Life and Fate by Vasily Grossman (1980)

  1. 50
    War and Peace by Léon Tolstoï (chrisharpe, longway)
  2. 40
    One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Alexander Solzhenitsyn (chrisharpe)
  3. 51
    The Kindly Ones by Jonathan Littell (LilianaL, chrisharpe)
  4. 30
    Every Man Dies Alone / Alone in Berlin by Hans Fallada (chrisharpe)
    chrisharpe: Both are books about individuals under repressive regimes, set during WWII, by authors who lived through the circumstances they write about. Although both works are "fiction", the authority of each writer is plainly stamped on each novel. The subject matter may be grim, and the detail uncompromising, but the characters' humanity shines through to make these uplifting reads.… (more)
  5. 30
    Kaputt by Curzio Malaparte (pitjrw)
    pitjrw: Grossman reminds me of Malaparte. Less black humor than Malaparte but the same emphasis on the brief scene that illuminates a larger canvas. I don’t think it’s a mere coincidence that both were journalists.
  6. 20
    The Radetzky March by Joseph Roth (christiguc)
  7. 31
    Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler (chrisharpe)
  8. 21
    Suite Française by Irène Némirovsky (chrisharpe)
  9. 21
    Red Star Over Russia: A Visual History of the Soviet Union from the Revolution to the Death of Stalin by David King (MeisterPfriem)
  10. 10
    A Writer at War. Vasily Grossman with the Red Army 1941-1945 by Vassili Grossman (chrisharpe)
  11. 00
    Generations of Winter by Vasily Aksyonov (DelphineM)
  12. 00
    Front-line Stalingrad by Victor Nekrasov (chrisharpe)
  13. 00
    Totalitarianism by Hannah Arendt (Anonymous user)
  14. 11
    The Trial by Franz Kafka (gust)
  15. 11
    Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar by Simon Sebag Montefiore (chrisharpe)
  16. 00
    Chevengur by Andrej Platonov (gust)
  17. 01
    Europe Central by William Vollmann (EnriqueFreeque)
  18. 01
    Blockade Diary by Лидия Гинзбург (gust)
  19. 01
    Sjostakovitsj zijn leven, zijn werk, zijn tijd by Krzysztof Meyer (gust)
Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

English (40)  Dutch (7)  Spanish (5)  Yiddish (2)  French (2)  Catalan (2)  Italian (1)  Swedish (1)  Norwegian (1)  All languages (61)
Showing 1-5 of 40 (next | show all)
Definitely sprawling. People unjustly accused of being against the State, being sent to prison, to Siberia... torture by means of piercing body organs, internal bleeding, blood curdling in the mouth... horrendous, sickening to the core. Me feeling sorry for the defeated, in this case, the Germans at Stalingrad, reduced to eating boiled horse meat. ( )
  Lonsing | Nov 29, 2014 |
A magnificent multi-layered book centred on the battle for Stalingrad, this book captures the realities of Soviet life unflinchingly. Deservedly acclaimed. ( )
  bodachliath | Nov 11, 2014 |
Historically interesting and written in a journalistic/cinematic style- but somewhat sprawling in plot- and personally there were only a few characters that really engaged me. Perhaps overrated as a modern classic. ( )
  Karl_Beech | Aug 22, 2014 |
It took me eight months or more to read Life and Fate. Not, of course, in an ‘oh my goodness I cannot put this down’ sort of a scamper. More a sort of Himalayan hike with a growing monkey of determination on my back: I’ve bought it (actually I was given it, but why spoil a good story?) I’m bloody well going to finish it. There were moments in which the Himalayan hike seemed too much, and Vasily Grossman’s epic tome was fated to head off and join the three or four other (not necessarily long) volumes that have defeated me. Yet always there was just at the very least a hint that this was not one of those novels in which the folding of a handkerchief would be the pinnacle of excitement.

Fortunately I have consumed one or two mammoth tomes before – three (I won’t parade my egotism by naming names) rate as my all-time literary favourites. Alright: I shall name one, because it prepared me and inspired me to keep going with Life and Fate. The Brothers Karamazov is as inspirational a read as I have even encountered. And, while it appears Grossman was deliberately emulating that other great Russian tome War and Peace, on which I cannot comment, I can say that the experience of reading Karamazov and indeed of reading Crime and Punishment a few times prepared me for the sheer enormity of scratching around the Russian nomenclature. Russian patronymics, given names and surnames congeal in a bewildering cobweb of syllables, and I have long learned that it is best simply to allow the identity of the character slowly and imperfectly to dawn on this reader’s consciousness.

So, armed with the memory of conquering a few Russian tomes, I journeyed on. I’m glad I did. The fog was at times intense, and the List of Chief Characters at the back of the book is woefully inadequate (page references would have redeemed it), but as I journeyed I was taken into the depths of human vulnerability. The death of a child in a Nazi gas oven is as chilling, yet haunting beautiful a piece of writing as I have encountered. The dreadful carnage and the equally dreadful ennui of fields of battle, the desperate sexual encounters, the ghastly dehumanizing bastardry of war should all be compulsory reading for every thinking human being, pacifist or militarist, left or right or in between. The brutal yet understated irony that the evil of soviet oppression and the evil of Nazi oppression bend to become just two more superimposable chapters of human inhumanity should not be lost (Grossman never lived to see Life and Fate published, much less to read Alan Bullock’s monumental Hitler and Stalin, but it makes a similar point). The ability of the totalitarian State eventually to bend human wills to uncharacteristic compromise should not be lost on any of us who believe we are advocates of some Herculean cause: there is a Viktor Pavlovich Shtrum lurking in most of us. Coincidentally I have been reading Nineteen Eighty-Four during the same period that I was reading Grossman, and the same point is lurking in those shorter pages, albeit less forcefully. Totalitarianism sucks.

I doubt I will ever read Life and Fate again – I may not have a spare eight months. I will however never regret reading it, and I suspect Grossman’s instinctive and lonely wisdom will permeate my thoughts until I stop thinking. Grossman had of course no editor to tidy up the flaws in his work, but he cannot be blamed for that: this is a magisterial work that I will never forget or regret reading. If only the editor of this edition had improved that List of Chief Characters. ( )
  zappa | Jul 19, 2014 |
I've finally finished reading Life and Fate and what an experience it was. This is the tale of an extended family in Soviet Russia living during the Siege of Stalingrad in WWII. Grossman explores everything from the German concentration camps, to the Gulag, to the culture of fear under Stalin, to marital strife, to typical family dilemmas. It's an epic book that I learned a ton from and will want to read again at some point in my life.

Grossman's book was confiscated by the Soviet government when he tried to have it published in 1960. I believe it was first published in the 1980s (Grossman had hidden copies of the novel with several different friends). It is certainly not all negative about the Soviets, Stalin, and Russia, but Grossman definitely posits that Hitler and Stalin, Fascism and Communism, have many negatives in common, a theme that was obviously not popular to the communists. Also, Grossman tries to humanize Stalin in sections, and the fear that the characters live with of being unjustly and unfairly accused and punished of disloyalty is constant. I'm sure all of this contribute to the book being banned.

I came away with great respect for this book, but can't say that I felt deeply connected to it. Grossman chooses to throw the reader into the middle of both the war and his characters' lives. Somehow I just couldn't get involved with the characters. It may be that there were just too many story lines going on, or it might be that I don't have enough cultural and political background to have made some events in the novel as impactful as they should have been. I'm also not convinced that the translation was as well done as it could have been. I felt that a lot of the language had a stilted feel. I have no way of knowing what it would have been like in the original Russian, but I wondered. In the end it was a book that I was extremely grateful to have read, but also grateful to have finished! ( )
1 vote japaul22 | Jun 8, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 40 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (32 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Grossman, Vasilyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Adrian, EsaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ballestrem, Madeleine vonTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Björkegren, HansTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Chandler, RobertTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Czech, JerzyTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rebon, MartaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Slofstra, FroukjeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Zonghetti, ClaudiaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
Opgedragen aan mijn moeder Jekaterina Saveljevna Grossman
Посвящается моей матери
Екатерине Савельевне Гроссман
This book is dedicated to my mother, Yekaterina Savelievna Grossman
First words
There was a low mist. You could see the glare of headlamps reflected on the high-voltage cables beside the road.
Quotations
But Chekhov said: let's put God, and all these grand progressive ideas, to one side. Let's begin with man. Let's be kind and attentive to the individual man - whether he's a bishop, a peasant, an industrial magnate, a convict in the Sakhalin islands or a waiter in a restaurant ... That's democracy, the still unrealised democracy of the Russian people.
Last words
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Жизнь и судьба
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
A book judged so dangerous in the Soviet Union that not only the manuscript but the ribbons on which it had been typed were confiscated by the state, Life and Fate is an epic tale of World War II and a profound reckoning with the dark forces that dominated the twentieth century. Interweaving an account of the battle of Stalingrad with the story of a single middle-class family, the Shaposhnikovs, scattered by fortune from Germany to Siberia, Vasily Grossman fashions an immense, intricately detailed tapestry depicting a time of almost unimaginable horror and even stranger hope. Life and Fate juxtaposes bedrooms and snipers' nests, scientific laboratories and the Gulag, taking us deep into the hearts and minds of characters ranging from a boy on his way to the gas chambers to Hitler and Stalin themselves. This novel of unsparing realism and visionary moral intensity is one of the supreme achievements of modern Russian literature.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0099506165, Paperback)

Suppressed by the KGB, Life and Fate is a rich and vivid account of what the Second World War meant to the Soviet Union.

On its completion in 1960, Life and Fate was suppressed by the KGB. Twenty years later, the novel was smuggled out of the Soviet Union on microfilm. At the centre of this epic novel looms the battle of Stalingrad. Within a world torn apart by ideological tyranny and war, Grossman’s characters must work out their destinies. Chief among these are the members of the Shaposhnikov family – Lyudmila, a mother destroyed by grief for her dead son; Viktor, her scientist-husband who falls victim to anti-semitism; and Yevgenia, forced to choose between her love for the courageous tank-commander Novikov and her duty to her former husband. Life and Fate is one of the great Russian novels of the 20th century, and the richest and most vivid account there is of what the Second World War meant to the Soviet Union.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:30:06 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

A book judged so dangerous in the Soviet Union that not only the manuscript but the ribbons on which it had been typed were confiscated by the state, Life and Fate is an epic tale of World War II and a profound reckoning with the dark forces that dominated the twentieth century. Interweaving an account of the battle of Stalingrad with the story of a single middle-class family, the Shaposhnikovs, scattered by fortune from Germany to Siberia, Vasily Grossman fashions an immense, intricately detailed tapestry depicting a time of almost unimaginable horror and even stranger hope. Life and Fate juxtaposes bedrooms and snipers' nests, scientific laboratories and the Gulag, taking us deep into the hearts and minds of characters ranging from a boy on his way to the gas chambers to Hitler and Stalin themselves. This novel of unsparing realism and visionary moral intensity is one of the supreme achievements of modern Russian literature.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
2 avail.
324 wanted
10 pay3 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (4.33)
0.5 2
1 1
1.5
2 4
2.5 1
3 37
3.5 8
4 75
4.5 33
5 147

Audible.com

2 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

See editions

NYRB Classics

2 editions of this book were published by NYRB Classics.

Editions: 1590172019, 1590176545

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 94,361,305 books! | Top bar: Always visible