From the list on Soviet historical fiction which skips the cliches.
Who am I?
I was born in Odessa, USSR, a Southern Ukrainian city that many more people know now than when my family and I immigrated in 1977. Growing up in the US, everything I read about Soviet immigrants was either cliched, stereotyped, or plain wrong. A 1985 short film, Molly’s Pilgrim, about a (presumably Jewish) Soviet immigrant girl showed her wearing a native peasant costume and a scarf on her head which, for some reason, Americans insisted on calling a “babushka.” “Babushka” means “grandmother” in Russian. Why would you wear one of those on your head? I was desperate for more realistic portrayals. So I wrote my own. And the five books I picked definitely offer them.
Alina's book list on Soviet historical fiction which skips the cliches
Why did Alina love this book?
Most books about the USSR, World War II, and refugees, feature saintly people suffering in noble silence. Something Unbelievable reminds us that the Soviet citizens fleeing Communism and Nazis were all individuals, not one-dimensional ciphers. They were sometimes vain, sometimes selfish, sometimes bored, and sometimes frustrated. They were real, flesh and blood, petty, complicated human beings who lived through the unthinkable… while still managing to think about sex, romance, jealousy, and betrayal. The granddaughter in Something Unbelievable is moved to learn all this and more about her grandmother’s evacuation to Asia during World War II. And so is the reader.