Title: Tatiana: An Arkady Renko Novel by Martin Cruz Smith
Expected publication: November 12, 2013; Simon and Schuster
Genre: suspense, crime fiction
One of the iconic investigators of contemporary fiction, Arkady Renko—cynical, analytical, and quietly subversive—has survived the cultural journey from the Soviet Union to the New Russia, only to find the nation as obsessed with secrecy and brutality as was the old Communist dictatorship. In Tatiana, the melancholy hero finds himself on the trail of a mystery as complex and dangerous as modern Russia herself.
The fearless investigative reporter Tatiana Petrovna falls to her death from a sixth-floor window in Moscow the same week that a mob billionaire, Grisha Grigorenko, is shot and buried with the trappings due a lord. No one makes the connection, but Arkady is transfixed by the tapes he discovers of Tatiana’s voice, even as she describes horrific crimes hidden by official versions. The trail leads to Kaliningrad, a Cold War “secret city” and home of the Baltic Fleet, separated by hundreds of miles from the rest of Russia. Arkady delves into Tatiana’s past and a surreal world of wandering dunes and amber mines. His only link is a notebook written in the personal code of a translator whose body is found in the dunes. Arkady’s only hope of decoding the symbols lies in Zhenya, a teenage chess hustler.
Sounds like a book about post-Communism Russia that would be fascinating.
What new books are you waiting on?