Snow in May by Kseniya Melnik

Snow in May

Kseniya Melnik

Discover the heart of Russia in these moving and wry short stories. Here are lives of quiet desperation with flashes of humour and humanity, such as are lived everywhere. But this is a cold, cold place where, in living memory, people were once interned for their beliefs...

Extract

Nothing changed. Alek kept playing and losing. He came home drunk; often he didn't make it to the bed. He didn't defend himself when Olya yelled. He didn't complain or hit her back when she came at him first with her fists, then with pots and pans or anything else within her reach, and he no longer promised to quit. She was ashamed when Vasily Petrovich caught them fighting in the kitchen or in the bathroom. Zoya's proverbs crawled, like roaches, out of the cracks in the walls, from the corners of the cupboards and the holes in their socks, from the cold bubbles in Olya's dishwater, screeching their nonsense. Couldn't anyone else hear them? 'The thread follows the needle. The thread follows the needle. The thread follows the needle.'

Parallels
  • A Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True by Brigid Pasulka
  • The Sea of Azov, Stories
  • The Gulag Archipelago by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

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