Bath Festivals was extremely honoured to play host to the announcement of the shortlist for the Pushkin House Russian Book Prize last night. The Prize, now in its second year, runs in association with Waterstones and rewards the best non-fiction writing on Russia. The shortlist was selected by a panel chaired by Dr Rowan Williams, and revealed at a special event last night by fellow Prize judge Viv Groskop and Andrew Jack, journalist at the Financial Times and co-chairman of Pushkin House.
The 2014 shortlisted titles are:
– The Black Russian by Vladimir Alexandrov (Head of Zeus)
– A Spy in the Archives: a Memoir of Cold War Russia by Sheila Fitzpatrick (I.B. Tauris)
– Glorious Misadventures: Nikolai Rezanov and the Dream of a Russian America by Owen Matthews (Bloomsbury)
– Red Fortress: the Secret Heart of Russia’s History by Catherine Merridale (Allen Lane)
– Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking: a Memoir of Food and Longing by Anya von Bremzen (Transworld)
– Musorgsky and His Circle: a Russian Musical Adventure by Stephen Walsh (Faber & Faber)
Dr Rowan Williams said of the shortlist: “This is a list which vividly shows the breadth and depth of interest in Russian matters in the English-speaking world. These books deal both with ‘mainstream’ cultural and political history and also with utterly unexpected dimensions of the Russian heritage and some unforgettable individuals who have contributed to it. We’re delighted to have a shortlist for the 2014 Prize which offers such lively, diverse and expert perspectives on Russia, and it has been a great privilege to be involved in this work.”
The winner of the 2014 Prize will be announced on Wednesday 30th April at a ceremony at Pushkin House, the premier centre for Russian culture in London, and will be awarded £5,000. The Prize was established in 2012 to encourage public understanding and intelligent debate about the Russian-speaking world.