The Red Wheel, Node III, Book 2
728 pages, 6.14 x 9.21
Hardcover | 9780268106850 | November 2019
eBook (PDF) | 9780268106881 | November 2019
eBook (EPUB) | 9780268106874 | November 2019
The Red Wheel is Nobel Prize–winner Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's multivolume epic work about the Russian Revolution. He spent decades writing about just four of the most important periods, or "nodes.” This is the first time that the monumental March 1917—the third node—has been translated into English. It tells the story of the Russian Revolution itself, during which the Imperial government melts in the face of the mob, and the giants of the opposition also prove incapable of controlling the course of events.
The action of Book 2 (of four) of March 1917 is set during March 13–15, 1917, the Russian Revolution's turbulent second week. The revolution has already won inside the capital, Petrograd. News of the revolution flashes across all Russia through the telegraph system of the Ministry of Roads and Railways. But this is wartime, and the real power is with the army. At Emperor Nikolai II’s order, the Supreme Command sends troops to suppress the revolution in Petrograd. Meanwhile, victory speeches ring out at Petrograd's Tauride Palace. Inside, two parallel power structures emerge: the Provisional Government and the Executive Committee of the Petrograd Soviet of Workers' and Soldiers’ Deputies, which sends out its famous "Order No. 1," presaging the destruction of the army. The troops sent to suppress the Petrograd revolution are halted by the army’s own top commanders. The Emperor is detained and abdicates, and his ministers are jailed and sent to the Peter and Paul Fortress. This sweeping, historical novel is a must-read for Solzhenitsyn's many fans, as well as those interested in twentieth-century history, Russian history and literature, and military history.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (1918–2008) is widely acknowledged as one of the most important figures—and perhaps the most important writer—of the last century. A Soviet political prisoner from 1945 to 1953, he set himself firmly against the anti-human Soviet system, and all anti-human ideologies, from that time forward. His story One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich (1962) made him famous, and The Gulag Archipelago, published to worldwide acclaim in 1973, further unmasked communism and played a critical role in its eventual defeat. Solzhenitsyn won the Nobel Prize in 1970 and was exiled to the West in 1974. He ultimately published dozens of plays, poems, novels, and works of history, nonfiction, and memoir, including Cancer Ward, In the First Circle, The Oak and the Calf, and Between Two Millstones, Book 1: Sketches of Exile, 1974–1978 (University of Notre Dame Press, 2018).
Marian Schwartz is a prizewinning translator of Russian literature. She is the principal translator of the works of Nina Berberova, Mikhail Bulgakov, Ivan Goncharov, and others.
"This third installment of The Red Wheel, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn's narrative of the events leading to the Russian Revolution, is remarkable in its complexity. The novel presents a polyphonic kaleidoscope of people, places, and events, some real, some fictitious." ~Society Journal
“Only a great work of art like The Red Wheel can convey the soul of a lawless mob that has lost all sense of measure. . . . This action-packed account, beautifully translated by Marian Schwartz, tells the story of one moment in which the failure of good men to act made all the difference in the world.” ~The National Review
"In the first volume of March 1917 . . . many haunting passages can be found, such as Nicholas II's confrontation with the icon of Christ following his tormented abdication." ~Times Literary Supplement
"In The Red Wheel, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn produced a masterpiece, and proved himself a worthy companion of Dostoevsky and rival of Tolstoy." ~Law and Liberty