By Donald Rayfield
The description 'definitive' is just too simply used, yet Donald Rayfield's biography of Chekhov benefits it unhesitatingly. to cite no much less an expert than Michael Frayn:
'With query the definitive biography of Chekhov, and certain to stay so for a long time to come back. Donald Rayfield starts off with the large benefit of a lot new fabric that was once prudishly suppressed less than the Soviet regime, or tactfully missed via students. yet his mastery of the entire facts, either previous and new - a huge archive - is magisterial, his history wisdom of the interval is very large; his Russian is delicate to each colloquial nuance of the day, and his tone is certain. He captures a likeness of the notoriously elusive Chekhov which ultimately starts to appear recognisably human - or even extra extraordinary.'
Chekhov's lifestyles used to be brief, he used to be in simple terms forty-four whilst he died, and dogged with ill-health yet his performs and brief tales guarantee him of his position within the literary pantheon. here's a biography that does him complete justice, briefly, unapologetically to copy that be aware 'definitive'.
'I do not bear in mind any monograph via a Western student on a Russian writer having such good fortune. . . Nikita Mikhalkov stated that sooner than this booklet got here out we did not recognize Chekhov. . . the writer does not invent, upload or beautify whatever . . . Rayfield is encouraged via the Westerner's urge no longer ot carry info again, even though grim it will possibly be.' Anatoli Smelianski, Director of Moscow Arts Theatre School
'It is tough to visualize one other booklet approximately Chekhov after this one via Donald Rayfield.' Arthur Miller, Sunday Times
'Donald Rayfield's exemplary biography attracts on a frightening array of fabric inacessible or overlooked by means of his predecessors.' Nikolai Tolstoy, The Literary Review
'Donald Rayfield, Chekhov's top and definitive biographer.' William Boyd, Guardian
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