St. Petersburg by Jonathan Miles
Madness, Murder, and Art on the Banks of the Neva

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 1 Critic Review

In this compelling account of St Petersburg’s turbulent history, Miles peels back the layers of myth in which the city is swaddled, while never losing sight of its haunting grace.
-Guardian

Synopsis

From Peter the Great to Putin, this is the unforgettable story of St Petersburg―one of the most magical, menacing, and influential cities in the world. 

St. Petersburg has always felt like an impossible metropolis, risen from the freezing mists and flooded marshland of the River Neva on the western edge of Russia. It was a new capital in an old country. Established in 1703 by the sheer will of its charismatic founder, the homicidal megalomaniac Peter the Great, its dazzling yet unhinged reputation was quickly cemented by the sadistic dominion of its early rulers. This city, in its successive incarnations―St. Petersburg, Petrograd, Leningrad and, once again, St. Petersburg―has always been a place of perpetual contradiction.

It was a window to Europe and the Enlightenment, but so much of Russia’s unique glory was also created here: its literature, music, dance and, for a time, its political vision. It gave birth to the artistic genius of Pushkin and Dostoyevsky, Tchaikovsky and Shostakovich, Pavlova and Nureyev. Yet, for all its glittering palaces, fairytale balls and enchanting gardens, the blood of thousands has been spilt on its snow-filled streets.

It has been a hotbed of war and revolution, a place of siege and starvation, and the crucible for Lenin and Stalin’s power-hungry brutality. In St. Petersburg, Jonathan Miles recreates the drama of three hundred years in this paradoxical and brilliant city, bringing us up to the present day, when its fate hangs in the balance once more.

This is an epic tale of murder, massacre and madness played out against squalor and splendor, and an unforgettable portrait of a city and its people.  

16 pages of color photographs
 

About Jonathan Miles

See more books from this Author
JONATHAN MILES's first novel, Dear American Airlines, was named a New York Times Notable Book and a Best Book of the Year by the Los Angeles Times and the Wall Street Journal. A former columnist for the New York Times, he serves as a contributing editor to magazines as diverse as Field & Stream and Details, and writes regularly for the New York Times Book Review and The Literary Review (UK). A former longtime resident of Oxford, Mississippi, he currently lives with his family in rural New Jersey.
 
Published March 6, 2018 by Pegasus Books. 560 pages
Genres: History.
Add Critic Review

Critic reviews for St. Petersburg
All: 1 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 0

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Daniel Beer on Aug 11 2017

In this compelling account of St Petersburg’s turbulent history, Miles peels back the layers of myth in which the city is swaddled, while never losing sight of its haunting grace.

Read Full Review of St. Petersburg: Madness, Murd... | See more reviews from Guardian

Rate this book!

Add Review