Review: 1917: Stories and Poems from the Russian Revolution

Posted 11 October, 2017 by Lianne in Books / 2 Comments

1917: Stories and Poems from the Russian Revolution
Format/Source: Paperback; my purchase

1917: Stories and Poems from the Russian Revolution is a collection of literary responses to one of the most cataclysmic events in modern world history, which exposes the immense conflictedness and doubt, conviction and hope, pessimism and optimism which political events provoked among contemporary writers – sometimes at the same time, even in the same person. This dazzling panorama of thought, language and form includes work by authors who are already well known to the English-speaking world (Bulgakov, Pasternak, Akhmatova, Mayakovsky), as well as others, whose work we have the pleasure of encountering here for the very first time in English. Edited by Boris Dralyuk, the acclaimed translator of Isaac Babel’s Red Cavalry (also published by Pushkin Press), 1917 includes works by some of the best Russian writers – some already famous in the English-speaking world, some published here for the very first time. It is an anthology for everyone: those who are coming to Russian literature for the first time, those who are already experienced students of it, and those who simply want to know how it felt to live through this extreme period in history.

I snatched this book up a few months ago whilst parusing at Book City with friends. Of course anything written by Russian authors would catch my attention, and I thought this was an interesting collection because the works featured here are specifically from the time of the Revolution so there’s that first-hand reaction and creativity stemming from that period. What is also pretty cool about this collection is that it includes works from writers who are not well-known to the English-speaking world: Alexey Kraysky, Zinaida Gippius, Yefim Zozulya. Some authors ring faint bells in my head from my days in grad school and was researching Soviet Russian authors for my own research, but thankfully this collection includes a brief biography about the author prior to their work.

Having said that, I wouldn’t personally recommend this book for those readers approaching Russian literature for the first time (see this post if you’re looking for recommendations there). Unless you’re interested this period of Soviet/Russian history, the works featured here tend to be on the dry side. Again, a personal preference, but it talks a lot about the engineering of a new society, the engineering of a new man, the mechanics of life, the march onward with progress (and trust me, the early years of the Revolution really focused on machines, it feels a bit devoid after a bit, but hey, they loved it). From a historian’s standpoint it’s intriguing because it definitely reflects the ideas that they’re pursuing at the time and the abolition of the old order, but if you’re picking this up for leisurely reading, you may want to consider starting somewhere else instead.

Nonetheless I like the idea of this book being available, the concept is great and is a valuable resource especially for students of Soviet/Russian history and literature.

Rating: ★★★☆☆

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Movie: Wonder Woman (2017)

Posted 10 October, 2017 by Lianne in Entertainment / 8 Comments

When a pilot crashes and tells of conflict in the outside world, Diana, an Amazonian warrior in training, leaves home to fight a war, discovering her full powers and true destiny.


So I’ve been excited to watch this movie for some time but I waited until I got the blu-ray…then I waited some more until my birthday the other week to finally watch it, lol.

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Comics: Daredevil (Vol. 1)

Posted 9 October, 2017 by Lianne in Comics / 0 Comments

Daredevil (Vol. 1)
By: Mark Waid, Paolo Rivera (Illustrations), Marcos Martin (Illustrations)
Format/Source: Paperback; my purchase

The Devil Is Reborn.

With new enemies, new friends … and that same old “grinnin’ in the face of hell” attitude, the Man Without Fear is back in action and leading with his face! Mark Waid (Amazing Spider-Man) joins neo-legendary artists Paolo Rivera and Marcos Martin for a new spin on Daredevil that will leave you gasping for air. Having turned his world upside over the past several years, Matt Murdock realizes that justice may not be blind to his past and villains may not be the only ones looking for answers. Bring it on. if Matt Murdock could see what he was doing … he’d be terrified.

Collecting: Daredevil 1-6.

For the longest time I had been meaning to pick up a Daredevil comic, start somewhere, especially after watching the Netflix series (see post). I ended up picking this one up just because it was on sale recently with the release of the first season of The Defenders.

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Comic: Jessica Jones: Uncaged! (Vol. 1)

Posted 6 October, 2017 by Lianne in Comics / 2 Comments

Jessica Jones: Uncaged! (Vol. 1)
By: Brian Michael Bendis (Writer), Michael Gaydos (Artist), Matt Hollingsworth (Colourist), Cory Petit (Letterer), David W. Mack (Cover Artist)
Format/Source: Paperback; my purchase

After a decade, Jessica Jones is back in her own solo series! A lot has changed in the Marvel Universe and there are many secrets hiding in the shadows – secrets only a special woman like Jessica Jones can hope to uncover. Alias Investigations is open for business, and of all the many mysteries to discover, her new case may be the most dangerous one! This blistering new series is filled with haunting revelations from Jessica’s past, and answers to some of the biggest questions about the new Marvel NOW! universe! From Jessica Jones’ original creators comes an all-new chapter in the world-famous private eye’s ongoing adventures!


I had been curious about the Jessica Jones comics ever since I watched the Netflix series (never reviewed it here on the blog but suffice to say I enjoyed it). Picked this volume up as it was featured on Indigo around the time that The Defenders was released.

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Another Year Older… (Birthday (Book) Giveaway!)

Posted 5 October, 2017 by Lianne in Miscellaneous / 20 Comments

It’s that time of year again…No, not Christmas (though that’s coming up real soon, isn’t it?), but it’s my birthday, lol. Yeah, I have to say this past year went by pretty quickly, and surprisingly enough with quite a number of big things going on (temporary move/change of status at work, travelling off to Iceland & Denmark earlier this year, going back to school (again), the publication of my first poetry collection). So I’m 31 today (yup, yup, definitely clearing off from my 20s here) and it’s just onward and upward from here.

As some of you know, I’m not big on splashy celebrations and whatnot (although the last few years I’ve noticed I no longer confine my celebrations to the day of but rather spread it out over the course of a week…lmao I didn’t even do anything remotely like this when I was younger!) but as with previous years, I’ve decided to host a wee book giveaway here at my blog featuring some of my favourite reads in the past year 🙂 You have a choice from one of the ten:

  • The Noise of Time by Julian Barnes (review)
  • Hyperion by Dan Simmons (review forthcoming)
  • Any book from Jasper Fforde’s Thursday Next series (see author tag)
  • China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan (review)
  • The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessey by Rachel Joyce (review)
  • Everything Beautiful Began After by Simon van Booy (review)
  • Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid (review)
  • Forty Words for Sorrow by Giles Blunt (review)
  • Miguel Hernandez’s poetry (review)
  • Mur Lafferty’s Six Wakes (review forthcoming)

To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter below! This giveaway ends on 12 October 2017 at 11:59pm EST and is open internationally so long as The Book Depository delivers to your country. A winner will be chosen and contacted the following day (or thereabouts), so please make sure you enter a valid email address 😉 The winner will be announced on this same post.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Bonne chance! Here’s to the year ahead 😀 Oh, and before I forget, there’s still a bit of time to enter the giveaway I’m hosting at Goodreads for a copy of my debut poetry book, Shall I Be a Poet Instead? You can enter that giveaway over here. That contest closes midnight 🙂