A novel remarkable for its combination of grandeur and extreme concision ... [a] memorable depiction of a Dostoevskian world of good, evil and the ever-present possibility of redemption ... an awesome achievement, head and shoulders above any novel that I have read so far this year
A luminous, beautifully crafted new novel by much-praised Russian emigre author Makine ... Each temporal leap the novel makes illuminates and defines its crucial events ... Makine writes lyrically, baring his struggling characters' emotions and vivifying their oft-chaotic backdrops with equal brio. The arc of the novel shows, above all, that life patterns repeat themselves; we watch the same conflicts playing themselves out in three life stories ... Displays the sensitivity and honesty of his acclaimed previous works.
Makine's eye for the telling detail of battle or the first stirring of romance is reminiscent of Michael Ondaatje
Makine has already established his readership. Powerful and intelligent, Requiem for the East, with its elegiac evocation of a past age, should extend that readership still further.
A powerful, passionate piece, epic in scope
Subtly allusive and deceptively lyrical ... Makine manages the different strands of the story with great skill
A major writer in the grand tradition of European literature, to which few, if any, contemporary English novelists can ever hope to belong
This book is a requiem for many things: not only for the Soviet Union but for love found and lost, for identity and truth
A slow burner, this - but burn it does ... the result is a requiem indeed, with all its beauty tied up in sadness.
Engrossing ... a compassionate elegy for a dying empire.
The writing is dense and absolutely absorbing. By snapping back and forth through the history of the Soviet Union, Makine shows us both its irresolvable contradictions and its immense draw. This is a beautifully written, all-engrossing, compassionate elegy for a dying empire. I cannot think of a book I have enjoyed more in the past year.
A beautifully written, all-engrossing, compassionate elegy for a dying empire. I cannot think of a book I have enjoyed more in the past year.