City of Thieves

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Click for availability and more information City of Thieves, by David Benioff

This new novel has received a lot of great reviews for David Benioff. He has also gained great notoriety as a screenwriter, most recently for The Kite Runner. City of Thieves begins with a screenwriter talking with his grandfather and asking about the elder's experiences living through the brutal siege of Leningrad by the Germans during World War II. When pressed for details, the grandfather tells his grandson, "you're a writer. Make it up." From there, the story shifts to the Leningrad during the days when the Germans surrounded that city and attempted to starve and bomb Leningrad and the Russians into submission. Lev Beniov is young, idealistic and stayed in Leningrad after his other family members fled to supposed safety in the Russian interior. His adventures become the center of the story. Fate leads him to be arrested and interrogated by a Russian colonel along with Kolya, a deserter from the Russian army. An unlikely pair thrown together during days of war, Beniov and Kolya are promised freedom if they can accomplish the seemingly impossible mission of finding a dozen eggs in the ravaged city as a personal favor for the colonel. Determined to accomplish that task to escape the Russian army's grasp, they wander through sections of Leningrad and the surrounding area and witness the horrendous suffering during the siege. Benioff has created a very interesting and readable novel and is recommended reading, especially for those interested in this subject. By the way, Benioff gives great acknowledgement and praise to Harrison Salisbury's acclaimed account of this event, The 900 Days: The Siege of Leningrad. It is also in the Greenwich Library's collection.
-Roy

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This page contains a single entry published on December 18, 2008 3:47 PM.

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