Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Film News: THE WINTER QUEEN by Boris Akunin

Looks like the English language film adaptation of Akunin's first book in the Erast Fandorin series, THE WINTER QUEEN, is moving forward. Read about the casting decisions here. These books, translated from the Russian and featuring the agent/detective Erast Fandorin (one of my favorite character names ever) have always seemed perfect for adaptation to film. They are enormously charming, well written and visually engaging. Only five of the books have so far been translated into English (far as I know) and if you haven't discovered them yet, you're in for a treat, most especially if you love historical mysteries. Since these are set in 19th century Tsarist Russia, there's an added exotic touch. Can't think of any other series set during this era.

There's a bit of confusion about which books are currently available in English since the write-up at the above link states that only five of the Fandorin books have been translated, but listed on Akunin's Fantastic Fiction page are several more titles in English. My library only has four of the Fandorin books in their system. Akunin's Website has only five listed.

At any rate, I've read: THE WINTER QUEEN, THE TURKISH GAMBIT, MURDER ON THE LEVIATHAN (my favorite), and THE DEATH OF ACHILLES, and I recommend them all. These would make for great summer reading at the beach, by the way.

Additional good news, the new Erast Fandorin, THE DIAMOND CHARIOT will be published in September, 2011.

Akunin also writes a second mystery series featuring a nun named Sister Pelagia, but I've yet to read those - though they are on my TBR list.


  1. Sound interesting, but for me the issue is how the tsar is portrayed, whether the reality of the brutality is portrayed in a true manner.

    The Jewish side of my family fled tsarist anti-Semitic pogroms in the early 1900s from the Russia-occupied part of Poland known as the Pale.

    So this historic accuracy is important to me.

    Otherwise, I stick to Archie Goodwin, Salvatore Montalbano, Martin Beck, Harry Hole, Guido Brunetti -- and a few others -- for the summer.

  2. Oh, the Tsar doesn't enter into the stories at all. He's not a character or anything.

    But, to each his or her own - especially when it comes to books.
    There are certainly plenty of mysteries to choose from. :)
    (Too many.)

  3. You are having an ineresting book blog here : ) I `d love to follow

  4. Oh, by all means, Demie. Followers are most welcome. Thanks for dropping by. :)

  5. Thought you might be interested to know that in fact ten of the novels have now been translated into English - all of the up to 'the diamond chariot', which was released in August 2011.

  6. Thanks so much for letting me know, Ian. I am a great admirer of Erast Fandorin. :)

    Far as I can tell, the person who does the translating does a wonderful job.


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