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Arkady Strugatsky. Rosemary Sutcliff. Roger Zelazny. Kathleen Winsor. Pauline Gedge. Mary Stewart. Ann Fairbairn. Joan Wolf. Ben Ames Wiilaims. Gwen Bristow. Home Contact us Help Free delivery worldwide. Free delivery worldwide. Bestselling Series.

Harry Potter. Popular Features. Home Learning. Hard to Be a God. Description Arkady and Boris Strugatsky are widely known as the greatest Russian writers of science fiction, and their novel Hard to Be a God is considered one of the greatest of their works. It tells the story of Don Rumata, who is sent from Earth to the medieval kingdom of Arkanar with instructions to observe and to influence, but never to directly interfere. Masquerading as an arrogant nobleman, a dueler and a brawler, Don Rumata is never defeated but can never kill.

With his doubt and compassion, and his deep love for a local girl named Kira, Rumata wants to save the kingdom from the machinations of Don Reba, the First Minister to the king. But given his orders, what role can he play? Hard to Be a God has inspired a computer role-playing game and two movies, including Aleksei German's long-awaited swan song. Yet until now the only English version out of print for over thirty years was based on a German translation, and was full of errors, infelicities, and misunderstandings.

This new edition--translated by Olena Bormashenko, whose translation of the authors' Roadside Picnic has received widespread acclaim, and supplemented with a new foreword by Hari Kunzru and an afterword by Boris Strugatsky, both of which supply much-needed context--reintroduces one of the most profound Soviet-era novels to an eager audience. Other books in this series.

Roadside Picnic Arkady Strugatsky. Add to basket. Sword at Sunset Rosemary Sutcliff. Forever Amber Kathleen Winsor. Hard to Be a God Arkady Strugatsky. The Eagle and the Raven Pauline Gedge.

Child of the Morning Pauline Gedge. The Doomed City Arkady Strugatsky. Rose Cottage Mary Stewart. Jack of Shadows Roger Zelazny. The Snail on the Slope Arkady Strugatsky.

Five Smooth Stones Ann Fairbairn. The Road to Avalon Joan Wolf. Wildfire at Midnight Mary Stewart. Madam, Will You Talk? Celia Garth Gwen Bristow. Review quote "A quick, fun read. Olena Bormashenko is the critically acclaimed translator of the Strugatskys' Roadside Picnic.

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Hard to Be a God

We use cookies to give you the best possible experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies. Dispatched from the UK in 2 business days When will my order arrive? Arkady Strugatsky. Rosemary Sutcliff. Roger Zelazny.


Somethings must have been lost in translation. Proper names and places evoked the wrong meanings for me so maybe it's my fault I didn't enjoy it more. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving…. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Other editions. Enlarge cover.


The novel follows Anton, an undercover operative from the future planet Earth, in his mission on an alien planet that is populated by human beings whose society has not advanced beyond the Middle Ages. The novel's core idea is that human progress throughout the centuries is often cruel and bloody, and that religion and blind faith can be effective tools of oppression, working to destroy the emerging scientific disciplines and enlightenment. The title 'Hard to Be a God' refers to Anton's known as his alias Don Rumata throughout the book perception of his precarious role as an observer on the planet, for while he has far more advanced knowledge than the people around him, he is forbidden to assist too actively as his assistance would interfere with the natural progress of history. The book pays a lot of attention to the internal world of the main character, showing his own evolution from an emotionally uninvolved 'observer' to the person who rejects the blind belief in theory when confronted with the cruelty of real events. The prologue shows a scene from Anton's childhood, in which he goes on an adventure with his friends Pashka Paul and Anka Anna and plays a game based on melodramatic recreations of events on the unnamed medieval planet.


This review is part of our fund drive bonus. Read more about Strange Horizons ' funding model, or donate, here. In his introduction to Danilo Kis's A Tomb for Boris Davidovich , a collection of chilling stories about the individual's mental and moral degradation under Stalinism, Joseph Brodsky writes:. Unlike them, he can afford to treat tragedy as a genre, and his art is more devastating than statistics. For Brodsky, it would seem, distance is essential in order to effectively sublimate tragedy into art—distance of time and of place, which provides the necessary creative sanctuary that a writer needs. But for Arkady and Boris Strugatsky, who lived and worked in the Soviet Union at the height of the Cold War, neither kind of distance could be possible. It was, instead, their choice of genre that allowed them the "ironic detachment" that Brodsky thought necessary to transform statistics into literature.

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