Reading with... Mark Mazower

Mark Mazower teaches history at Columbia University. In his latest book, What You Did Not Tell: A Russian Past and the Journey Home (Other Press, October 15, 2017), he tells what he uncovered about his family's involvement in the Russian Jewish socialist organization the Bund and what happened after his grandparents fled Bolshevism and settled in England. It is a study of how history shapes us and how refugees can make new homes amid the wreckage of defeat and exile.

On your nightstand now:

Svetlana Alexievich's The Unwomanly Face of War (Penguin, 2017): extraordinary testimonies to the courage of women on the Eastern Front whose endeavours were then forgotten by the very regime they were fighting for.

Favorite book when you were a child:

Alan Garner's The Weirdstone of Brisingamen haunted me for many years after I read it--history lingering mysteriously in the landscape.

Your top five authors:

John Le Carré
Wilkie Collins
Sir Thomas Browne

Book you've faked reading:

The Brothers Karamazov by Dostoevsky

Book you're an evangelist for:

Someone should reprint Konstantin Paustovsky's The Story of a Life, the most remarkable autobiography of revolution ever written, poetry in prose.

Book you've bought for the cover:

Ann Wroe's Six Facets of Light

Book that changed your life:

Peter Brown, Augustine of Hippo--I didn't know you were allowed to write history like that!

Favorite line from a book:

"Everything needs to change so that everything can stay the same." --from di Lampedusa's The Leopard

Five books you'll never part with:

Thomas Browne, Religio Medici

W.G. Hoskins, The Making of the English Landscape

Edward Thomas, The Annotated Collected Poems

Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Trollope, The Way We Live Now

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