Macmillan, London, 1989
Beginning in 1979 I began to travel to Russia and lived there for the 1982-1983 academic year. Since then I have continued to travel to Russia and to date have made over one dozen visits, some extended, some for shorter periods. This collection is based on some of my experiences in the early and 1980s. Unfortunately, by the time Censored Tales appeared, the Soviet Union was on its last legs and interest in the country was waning. The book, which appeared in England, was not successful and Picador, which was to publish the paperback, pulled out of the contract. As a result, Censored Tales never appeared in the United States, although it seems to be in some libraries. Because the stories date from Soviet times, they have struck some as dated. However, I hope by now they can be classed as "historical fiction." I still hope to publish these stories as part of a larger collection.
In Censored Tales I indulged in what is perhaps a scientist's fondness for interesting structures, and several of the stories are somewhat unconventional in this regard. For example, in "At the Movies," a group of censors remark on the action through (literally) marginal comments, only to be drawn into the action themselves at the end of the story. Despite the fact that Censored Tales did not appear in the U.S., I feel it is probably my best published book. I hope someday to publish an expanded version in this country, including the epic tale of commissioning an oboe concerto from Russian composer Aleksander Raskatov during the collapse of the Soviet Untion.
Times Literary Supplement Review.
Eastern Daily Press Review.
Below the Contents are links to other books.
War and Peace
Storming the Bol'shoi
Alcohol and Alchemy
The Grave of Alexander Nevsky
Five Metamorphoses on a Russian Folk Tale
At the Movies