By Ivan Bunin

Translated by means of Robert Bowie

The first Russian to be offered the Nobel Prize for literature, Ivan Bunin is frequently thought of the final of the good Russian masters. Already well known in Russia earlier than the revolution, he fled the rustic in 1920 and lived the rest of his lifestyles in France, the place he endured to jot down for thirty years. Bunin made his identify as a short-story author with such masterpieces as "The Gentleman from San Francisco," the name piece in a single of his collections and one of many tales during this quantity. His final ebook of news, darkish Avenues, used to be released within the Forties. between his longer works have been a fictional autobiography, The lifetime of Arseniev (1930), and its sequel, formative years (1939), that have been later accrued into one quantity, and memoirs, The Accursed Days (1926), and thoughts and graphics (1950). He additionally wrote books on Tolstoy and Chekhov, either one of whom he knew in my view. Bunin, in reality, serves as a link-both own and literary-between Tolstoy, whom he met as a tender guy, Chekhov, an in depth buddy, and Vladimir Nabokov, who was once prompted via Bunin early in his occupation and who moved within the comparable émigré literary circles within the twenties and thirties.

Bunin completed his maximum mastery within the brief tale, and masses of his most interesting paintings appears to be like during this volume-the biggest selection of his prose works ever released in English. In Robert Bowie's superb translation, with large annotations and a long serious afterword, this paintings offers readers of English their first chance for a sustained come across with a Russian vintage, and one of many nice writers of the 20th century.

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Sample text

Instinctively he held her by the waist, caught the aroma of powder on her cheeks, noticed her large knees beneath the black of the evening dress, the gleam of one dark eye and her full lips in their red lipstick—this was a totally different woman sitting beside him now. In the dark theater, gazing at the glittering whiteness of the screen, where low-humming airships were flying, sweeping obliquely with wings widespread, they quietly conversed. ” he asked. “Alone. Speaking frankly, it’s horrible.

Scattered low and flat on the distant shore, the lights floated away. The ship stopped swaying. One might have thought that both passengers were sleeping, so motionless did they recline in the deck chairs. But they were not asleep; they were staring intently through the dusk at one another. ” And the other, the one with the straight shoulders, answered unhurriedly in the same tone, “Yes, to the Crimea and then some. ” “I recognized you immediately,” said the first. “And I recognized you, and also immediately,” answered the other.

Red. ” She noted it down on her pad and brought over a carafe of water from the adjoining table. He shook his head. “No, merci, I never drink water, or wine with water. ” she answered indifferently and went off for the vodka and herring. He watched her walk away—noted her smooth gait, the way her black dress swung back and forth as she moved. Yes, a polite tone mixed with apathy, all the mannerisms and bodily movements of the modest and conscientious waitress. But fine expensive shoes. Where did they come from?

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