Finished reading: Into Siberia by Gregory J. Wallance 📚 // A fascinating account of George Kennan’s travels in Siberia, his lectures afterwards and its impact on American-Russian relations. It is hard to imagine what Kennan went through during his travels and even harder to imagine the suffering of those caught up in the Russian exile system. The scale of suffering and disruption is hard to wrap your mind around. The extremes of weather and geography, and the lack of basic comforts in practically every area of life, meant Kennan pushed himself physically and mentally to the breaking point. But his writing and lectures fundamental changed the way Americans saw Russia.

The book is part Kennan biography, part history of Kennan’s work on the exile system. and part exploration of the exile system and its relationship to American-Russian relations. Sometimes the jumping between these threads slowed the momentum and felt momentarily disjointed but not enough to truly undermine the story. It truly does capture an amazing slice of history and the man at the center of this unique issue.

Thanks to NetGalley for the review copy.