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Golden Calf

ISBN-10: 1934824070
ISBN-13: 9781934824078
Edition: 2009
List price: $15.95 Buy it from $11.35
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Description: Ostap Bender, the "grand strategist," is a con man on the make in the Soviet Union during the New Economic Policy (NEP) period. He's obsessed with getting one last big score'”a few hundred thousand will do'”and heading for Rio de Janeiro, where  More...

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Book details

List price: $15.95
Copyright year: 2009
Publisher: Open Letter
Publication date: 12/15/2009
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 342
Size: 8.64" wide x 7.64" long x 0.73" tall
Weight: 1.144
Language: English

Ostap Bender, the "grand strategist," is a con man on the make in the Soviet Union during the New Economic Policy (NEP) period. He's obsessed with getting one last big score'”a few hundred thousand will do'”and heading for Rio de Janeiro, where there are "a million and a half people, all of them wearing white pants, without exception." When Bender hears the story of Alexandr Koreiko, an "undercover millionaire"'”no Soviet citizen was allowed to openly hoard so much capital'”the chase is on. Koreiko has made his millions by taking advantage of the wide-spread corruption and utter chaos of the NEP, all while serving quietly as an accountant at a government office and living on 46 rubles a month. He's just waiting for the Soviet regime to collapse so he can make use of his stash, which he keeps hidden away in a suitcase. Teaming up with two petty criminals and a hopelessly naïve driver, Bender leads his merry band of mischief makers on a raucously hilarious jaunt across the "wild west" of the early Soviet Union. One of the true classics of Russian literature, this new translation of The Golden Calf'”the first complete translation of the novel'”restores the absurd, manic energy of the original and reaffirms the judgment of the Soviet censors, who said: "You have a very nice hero, Ostap Bender. But really, he's just a son of a bitch."

The famous collection of Ilf and Petrov created the inimitable rogue and confidence man, Ostap Bender, whose adventures, with their frequent satiric thrusts at Soviet life, have become classics of Russian comic literature. In the first novel, The Twelve Chairs (1928), Bender searches for a hoard of jewels concealed in a set of dining-room chairs. In the second, The Little Golden Calf (1931), set in the Soviet Union under the first Five-Year Plan, Bender tries hard but fails to become a millionaire. A six-month car trip in 1935--36 through the United States resulted in a witty travelogue. The collaboration was broken by Ilf's untimely death from tuberculosis. Petrov was killed in a plane crash while working as a war correspondent.

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