Friday, April 14, 2006

The Gentleman From Finland

Part of my pre-trip preparation involves reading all the books I can about trans-Siberian train travel. I just finished one, called The Gentleman from Finland, by Robert M. Goldstein. It’s not one of the better known trans-Siberian books, but it’s very good. It chronicles a trip the author took on the line in 1987, when things were still very bleak and Soviet. It’s one of those train stories that starts out seeming like a collection of slapstick anecdotes about drunken Russians and stolen shoes, but turns substantial when the author starts to understand the forces driving him to travel across Siberia in November.

Next up: Eric Newby’s The Big Red Train Ride.

No comments: