2008/11/23

November 23 in Russian history. The man who raised Soviet children

1908

One hundred years ago Nikolay Nosov was born in Kiev. He wrote many children's books, read by hundreds of millions of Soviet children for decades. Those who haven't read his stories about Neznaika, heard the audio recordings or (in the late Soviet years) saw animated films. The trilogy about Neznaika, Vitya Maleev at School and at Home and short stories are his best known books.

You can find the full text of the first book about Neznaika here: The Adventures of Neznaika and His Friends. See also a very brief review of the trilogy here: Nikolay Nosov: Neznaika trilogy. The author of the review, Layla AbdelRahim, qualifies the books in the following way: the first book is a socialist anarchist utopia of Flower town, the second, Dunno in Sun City, reminds one of the communist state and the third one, Dunno on the Moon, describes harsh realities of the capitalist society on the moon. This is true, but this is not why we loved the books. I recall one of my friends (we were, probably, 7 or 8 years old then), who had borrowed my copy of all three books (and they were not easy to buy in the USSR!), once whispered to me in a conspiratorial way: "You know what? The third book is about America!". Well, we didn't like the way people lived on the capitalist Moon, but the books were incredibly popular. Most of all I loved the second one, about the communist Sun City :).

As for the other books, I strongly advice that you check the translations of some short stories by Nikolay Nosov made by Svet from Windows to Russia:

ZIS
Cucumbers
The crucian carp
The crucian carp (part 2)
Mishka's porridge
Mishka's porridge (part 2)
The Pistol
The Pistol (part 2)
Gardeners
Garderners (part 2)
Rat-Rat-Rat
Laddy
Laddy (part 2)

2 comments:

Kyle and Svet Keeton said...

Thanks for the mention. Svet was so happy because the Soviet story idea was her brain child. :)

I enjoy the stories very much myself and look forward to reading them as she post them.

Thanks again.

Kyle & Svet

Dmitri Minaev said...

Hi, Kyle,

Just say thanks to Svet. I read the same books when I was a little boy :)