Eugene Vodolazkin: Авиатор (The Aviator)

The latest addition to my website is Eugene Vodolazkin‘s Авиатор (The Aviator). This tells the story of Innokenty who wakes up in 1999, aged around thirty, but he was born in 1900. We learn about his past before the Revolution (good) and after the Revolution (terrible), including a horrendous time in one of Stalin’s labour camps. But, as well as learning what happened to him to bring him to 1999, we see his reaction to 1999 from a 1920s point of view. Love is, of course, a factor but this book is much more, as we learn about Russia then and Russia now, neither coming out particularly favourably. Innokenty is, in many ways innocent, but quite capable of judging both eras. Vodolazkin tells an excellent tale about a man adrift in the wrong time.

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