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Dzanc Books is nonprofit press specializing in literary fiction and nonfiction. In addition to publishing activities, Dzanc Books also supports the Disquiet International Literary Program.

Sankya, by Zakhar Prilepin

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Sankya, by Zakhar Prilepin

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Blank white book w/path

Sankya, by Zakhar Prilepin


Publication Date: April 29, 2014
Paperback: 200 pages
ISBN: 978-1938604515
Trim: 1.0 x 5.8 x 8.8

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Sasha “Sankya” Tishin, and his friends are part of a generation stuck between eras. They don’t remember the Soviet Union, but they also don’t believe in the promise of opportunity for all in the corrupt, capitalistic new Russia. They belong to an extremist group that wants to build a better Russia by tearing down the existing one. Sasha, alternately thoughtful and naïve, violent and tender, dispassionate and romantic, hopeful and hopeless, is torn between the dying village of his youth and the soulless capital, where he and his friends stage rowdy protests and do battle with the police. When they go too far, Sasha finds himself testing the elemental force of the protest movement in Russia and in himself.



"If you want to feel the real raw nerve of modern Russian life, what you need isn’t Anna Karenina—what you need is Sankya." — From the Foreword to the English edition of Sankya by Alexey Navalny

“…probably the most important writer in modern Russia, a sensitive and intelligent critic of his country’s condition.” —Newsweek

“Prilepin is the biggest event in today's Russian literature; his language reminds us of Tolstoy.” —Tatyana Tolstaya

"The novel is so vivid that it seems to be almost extremist."—Komsomolskaya Pravda



Zakhar Prilepin, born near Ryazan in 1975, lives in Nizhny Novgorod where he is the regional editor of the independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta. Prilepin had a varied life before dedicating himself to writing, spending time as a student, as a laborer, as a journalist and as a soldier, serving with the Special Forces in Chechnya. More recently Prilepin has come to the public attention not only as one of the best writers of his generation, but as a committed, and often controversial, political activist on behalf of the 'Other Russia' coalition. His website is one of the most popular author's sites in Russia. Prilepin's combination of lucid prose and social consciousness has made him one of the most popular and acclaimed writers in Russia today and drawn comparisons with the Russian classics.



Mariya Gusev is a writer, editor, and literary translator. She is one of the founding editors of the St. Petersburg Review (founded 2006), and her translations of contemporary Russian writers have appeared in Rasskazy: New Fiction from a New Russia (Tin House), Virginia Quarterly Review, and many other publications.

Jeff Parker co-edited the anthologies Rasskazy: New Fiction from a New Russia (Tin House) and Amerika: Russian Writers View the United States (Dalkey Archive). For many years he directed the Summer Literary Seminars in St. Petersburg, Russia, program. His most recent book, Where Bears Roam the Streets, is a work of nonfiction about Russia. He teaches in the MFA Program for Poets & Writers at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Alina Ryabovolova’s translations from English to Russian include British novelist Ben Elton’s Popcorn. She is currently a doctoral student in Communication at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.