With Russia and Ukraine occupying much of the headlines these days, we wanted to present to you titles that represent both countries’ people, culture, and history. Seeking information on these countries is a good step to wrap our heads around this current event. We’ve picked out some of our books on Ukraine and Russia to get you started. If you’d like to find even more books on these countries and their relationship with each other, reach out to a reader’s advisor today.
DB 87150 Russian history: a very short introduction by Geoffrey A. Hosking
Professor of Russian history undertakes an impartial history of the vast, diverse, and unruly country, from the tenth century to the Putin era. Portrays important individuals in the nation's past, from Peter the Great and Catherine II to Lenin and Stalin. Examines the Soviet experience and the post-Soviet era. 2012.
DB 100397 Putin’s people: how the KGB took back Russia and then took on the West by Catherine Belton
An investigative journalist recounts how Vladimir Putin and the KGB agents surrounding him rose to power. She discusses the strategies implemented to replace the previous regime, take control of the economy, and launch influence abroad. Commercial audiobook. 2020.
DB 78422 Ukraine: birth of a modern nation by Serhy Yekelchyk
Survey of Europe's second-largest country, Ukraine, and its history through the 2004 Orange Revolution. Chronicles the twentieth-century revolution, famine, and Nazi and Soviet occupations. Highlights the nation's 1991 independence and emergence as a modern state. 2007.
DB 84209 Gates of Europe: a history of Ukraine by Serhii Plokhy
A historian examines Ukraine's past in an effort to better understand its present and future. Plokhy details how, given its unique geographical situation between Europe, Russia, and the Asian East, Ukraine has been shaped by empires repeatedly using it as a strategic gateway between East and West throughout history. 2015.
DB 87843 Black Square: adventures in post-Soviet Ukraine by Sophie Pinkham
Journalist explores contemporary life in Ukraine, examining Ukraine's repeated rebuilding of itself, the political roots of its early twenty-first century conflicts, and its issues with corruption, poverty, ethnic divisions, and Russian aggression. Also profiles the many-faceted lives of Ukrainian individuals, including a doctor, an art gallerist, and a musician. 2016.
DB 88876 The Crimean nexus: Putin’s war and the clash of civilizations by Konstantin Pleshakov
Foreign-policy-analyst-turned-professor's examination of the conflicts occurring in the early twenty-first century between Ukraine and Russia. Discusses ethnic tensions and the complex political history underlying the two countries' relations. 2017.
DB 89645 Red Famine: Stalin’s war of Ukraine by Anne Applebaum
The Pulitzer Prize-winning author recounts Stalin's 1929 agricultural collectivization efforts, which forced millions of peasants off their land and led to a catastrophic famine. The author argues that the state deliberately set out to cause the deaths of millions of Ukrainians in response to a series of rebellions. Contains some strong language and violence. Commercial audiobook. 2017.
DB 56657 Crimea: the Great Crimean War, 1854-1856 by Trevor Royle
Details the confrontation over who should maintain the keys to the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem and the resulting conflict between Russia and allied Britain, France, and Turkey. The war created numerous battlefield innovations including constant press coverage, trench warfare, underwater mines, and the frontline nursing of Florence Nightingale. 2000.
DB 89102 Who lost Russia? how the world entered a New Cold War by Peter Conradi
An analysis of Russia's path since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Discusses international relations and posits that America has made an enemy by consistently failing to understand Russia's plans and motives. 2017.
DB 89395 The future is history: how totalitarianism reclaimed Russia by Masha Gessen
Russian journalist and biographer examines the issues her native country has recently faced. Follows four different individuals born at the promised dawn of democracy, and charts the effects of the new autocracy on their lives as the old Soviet order reemerged. Unrated. Commercial audiobook. 2017.