Best Book Ranking: Bestsellers
• For many years, Russia has been in the top 3 most reading countries in the world (however, India and China intercept the first place). But what kind of books do Russians read?
MyBook experts calculated which bestseller books are popular among more than 800 thousand users of this book service.
10. Alexey Ivanov, "Pishcheblok"
Screen adaptations add to the popularity of books, so most of the works of the rating are embodied on the blue screen. The Pishcheblok by Alexei Ivanov, already known for his work on an alternative version of the Perm Territory "Heart of Parma" or the development of the "extra person" motif, traditional for Russian prose, in the story "The Geographer Drank His Globe Drank" was no exception.
• Most recently (in May of this year), a television series was released on the Food Unit. And no wonder: the story of how a vampire wound up in a pioneer camp of the late Soviet era is right on the screen. You can see everything in it – both a hyperbolic description of the era of stagnation, and the horrors of Soviet life, and the nostalgic look of Generation X on their past, and just a good, high-quality and interesting teenage horror movie.
9. Alexey Salnikov, "Petrovs in the flu and around it"
Surprisingly, the top 10 most popular fiction books included a very controversial novel, comparable in terms of viscosity and verbosity to James Joyce's Ulysses itself.
• Salnikov turned a simple story about how the family of an ordinary Russian car mechanic Petrov suffers the flu into an epic scale story about a shamanic journey of consciousness along the border of the world of the living and the dead with an alternating bias in one direction or another.
• The flu virus creates a special environment around the heroes, where mythical figures participate equally in everyday life, and the usual journey from home to work is full of mysteries and magic (even if generated by high temperatures).
8. Evgeny Vodolazkin, Lavr
Russians love stories about how the human soul rises from the ordinary to the divine. It is even better when this plot is wrapped in historical exoticism. In "Lavra" there is both, and the hero is not a simple one, but a healer-herbalist. His spiritual quest was inspired by love for his unmarried wife who died in childbirth. And this whole sentimental story unfolds against the backdrop of Rus' in the XNUMXth-XNUMXth centuries, Jerusalem and medieval monasteries.
• Let's add to this fragrant brew the author's language, which either pleasantly tickles the reader's intellectual vanity with Old Russian, or switches to everyday life or rises to the intellectual level. It is no wonder that the book shot – it was translated into 30 languages. There is no film adaptation yet, but there is a performance of the same name, staged at the Liteiny Theater in 2019.
7. Marina Stepnova, "Garden"
This is a large-scale work, full of references and allusions to the famous works of Chekhov, Tolstoy and Turgenev. The action takes place in the reign of Alexander III – the heyday of the Russian Empire.
• It begins like many traditional upbringing novels of that era: the princely family acquires a vast, beautiful, albeit somewhat neglected estate in the Voronezh province. And in it a late child is born – the main character of the novel.
• Although in fact, probably, the true heroine of the novel is the “bookish” atmosphere of that time, where fiction is intertwined with reality, and as a herald of fate, Vladimir’s older brother, Narodnaya Volya member Alexander Ulyanov, appears on the pages.
6. Tatyana Ustinova, "Magic Light"
No matter what genre the prolific writer Tatyana Ustinova works in – whether it is a detective story, modern prose or a script – in the end, a moderately romantic story still comes out, where a sensitive middle-aged maiden finds a heart friend.
• "Magic Light" was no exception – a lyrical story about the thorny paths that women and men go through on the way to each other.
5. Victor Pelevin, "The Art of Light Touches"
The top 5 most popular books among Russians are opened by the work of the ruler of thoughts of the readership from 30 to 50 years old, published two years ago. As usual, the writer with a Buddhist squint examines this world and reveals the secrets of the universe to everyone.
• The modern agenda in Touches – the dominance of political correctness and Russian hackers – suddenly turns out to be an ordinary ingredient in a thermonuclear cocktail of Freemasons, Ancient Egypt, secret services and ancient cults with human sacrifices.
• All this is seasoned with Pelevin's trademark cold humor, with which the writer examines under a microscope the dreams of the mind of Russian reality, which give birth to monsters.
4. Victor Pelevin, "Invincible Sun"
Pelevin's fans were looking forward to the new book – how will the sun of Russian literature respond to the grandiose coronavirus pandemic? Well, Pelevin responded, and how!
• True, against the background of American billionaires, corporate anarchists, ancient cults, the world soul suffering in the trap of matter and a grandiose picture of the destruction and reconstruction of the world, the banal virus is somehow lost.
3. Pavel Sanaev, "Bury me behind the plinth"
The sad and tragic story of a child's life with a mentally ill grandmother, who loves so much that she would rather hate, was sold in huge circulations, was repeatedly told on the theater stage, and also filmed in 2009.
• It was written by Pavel Sanaev, the stepson of the People's Artist of the USSR Rolan Bykov, and the grandparents with whom he lived were also artists, Vsevolod Sanaev and his wife Lydia.
2. Guzel Yakhina, “Zuleikha opens her eyes”
In second place among the most read books by Russians is a novel about the difficult Soviet past – dispossession in Tatarstan in the 30s. But the curse turns into a blessing, and the horrors of collectivization and exile become a window to the world for the main character, Zuleikha.
• A thirty-year-old Muslim woman who has not seen anything outside her native village, whose day consists of everyday worries – to feed the cattle, to clean the house, to heat the bathhouse, to appease her husband – suddenly finds herself torn out of her usual environment by a whirlwind of changes. And although the new world is clearly no better and no kinder than the measured patriarchal nature of the village, it is definitely wider, more diverse and requires not blind obedience, but thoughts and feelings.
• Zuleikha is Yakhina's first novel, and the result, according to many critics, is convincing, serious, and promising. True, the topic was chosen too sharp, which caused a lot of controversy among literary critics, critics, politicians and public figures.
• The Tatars did not like the inaccuracies in the description of life and traditions, and the traditionalists did not like the “slandering of the past”. But be that as it may, after a few years, Zuleikha was translated into more than 30 languages, staged at the Bashkir Drama Theater, and in the spring of last year, the Rossiya 1 TV channel showed the series of the same name with Chulpan Khamatova in the title role.
1. Alexander Tsypkin, “Women of inexorable age and other unprincipled stories”
The brand director, communications specialist and distressed asset investor made his literary debut in 2015, and has become a top humorous prose writer.
• For 6 years, his book has sold half a million copies, which since the days of the USSR, only a few have managed to repeat. As the author himself says, there are two reasons for this:
- own literary skill,
- PR instincts.
• From the very beginning, Alexander looked at his work not as another imperishable thing, but as a creative project, a kind of business with all its attributes.
• That is why Tsypkin chose the mixed genre, and not pure humorous prose (here Zhvanetsky reigns in the minds of Russians, whom no one has been able to surpass until now).
• Skillfully alternating the funny with the touching, he makes the readers smile, then tears, then a lump in the throat. And he makes very good money doing it. According to Alexander, he receives several million rubles a year just for his books. The television series Unprincipled, filmed last year, added to their popularity.