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Looking for a good book to read while you're traveling in Belarus? Check out my list of books about Belarus and by Belarusian authors.


Chernobyl Prayer: A Chronicle of the Future

Svetlana Alexievich

CATEGORIES: Classic/Culturally Significant | Person/Place/Event

Also published under the name Voice of Chernobyl, Alexievich’s work of oral history made her the first Nobel Prize winner from Belarus. From A Year of Reading the World: The “book consists of the curated accounts of many of those who lived through (and continue to feel the effects of) the Chernobyl disaster. Through her conversations with people involved with the incident at every level — from local villagers and clean-up workers to scientists, lecturers, and former officials, as well as returnees, outlaws, and immigrants now deliberately living in the affected area, and even herself — Alexievich presents a powerful document that uses the horror of what happened to interrogate identity, history, and the way that this event has shaken and reshaped the future not only of her nation, but of the world.”

 

(Recommended by Ann Morgan , author and TED speaker )



Paranoia

Victor Martinovich

CATEGORIES: Sense of Culture

Martinovich’s novel isn’t so much dystopian as it is a commentary on the country with the “last dictator in Europe.” While the plot may read like a rip-off of George Orwell’s 1984, the totalitarianism depicted is all too real, which is why the book was banned just two days after its release. Much like 1984, the political thriller focuses on a pair of star-crossed lovers whose tryst is closely surveilled by the government.

Jenna Rose Robbins has ghostwritten more than 12 books, including two New York Times bestsellers, and is the author of Faithful and Devoted: Confessions of a Music Addict, which was a finalist for the BookLife Prize. After graduating from the University of Michigan, Jenna earned her Master's of Professional Writing from the University of Southern California. When she's not getting eyestrain at her computer, Jenna can generally be found trying to avoid emergency rooms around the world.

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