Boris Akunin - The Winter Queen and Murder on the Leviathan

Let's review two books today, both by the Russian Boris Akunin. These two ripping yarns, one an international espionage thriller, the other a classic Agatha Christie-type murder mystery, both take place in tsarist Russia and feature the likable hero Erast Fandorin, a young, bright, sometimes gullible mastermind who uncovers one devious scheme after another. Akunin, in real life Grigory Chkhartishvili, a literary scholar and translator of Japanese, deftly weaves different cultures (and the prejudices about them) into the plot. His action-packed plots unravel at a fast pace, and there's twists and turns aplenty. I read both books in excellent English translations, and recommend them heartily if you're in the mood for some old-fashioned adventure.

Posted by cronopio at 02:35 PM, October 09, 2006