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Judith B. (N Chelmsford, MA)
Snowdrops by A.D. Miller
Nick Platt seems such a sad sort. We never find out about his past or his future. The book is written as a letter to his fiancee about a time in his life when he lived and practiced law in Moscow. It portrays an eye-opening awareness of modern day Russia and the struggles of citizens who want to create a better world but are continued to be drawn into the corrupt world of their past. Moscow is a city of "hedonism and desperation, corruption and kindness..." The book is an easy read, but I found it imbalanced by portraying just a capsule of the bigger picture of the characters
Janice M. (Holland, MI)
Twists and turns galore and a feeling of foreboding flow through the pages of Snowdrops. It has an Alfred Hitchcock feel to it - as the reader, you know that things are not what they seem. Unfortunately, the main character, Nick Platt, is taken in by the city and the friends he makes and he continues his relationship with them even when he realizes he is being used. A quick read with an interesting plot and location. I can see this being a good pick for a book club because of the characters and their many flaws.
Christine P. (Pleasanton, CA)
At the beginning I found this book compelling. I found the descriptions of Moscow and its inhabitants in the early days of capitalism fascinating but dismal at the same time. As I read further, I was put off by the greed and decadence and lack of caring by and for its main character, Nick Platt. I found Nick to be as cold as a Moscow winter. The writing is well done but to classify it as a psychological drama will lead more readers to be disappointed then not. I was hoping for some dramatic ending and felt it fell flat and like Nick Platt longing for something that I just wasn’t going to get.
Duane F. (Cape Girardeau, MO)
I finished this book and have mulled it over and yet I still find myself unable to decide whether it was a hit or a miss. This is a story of the underbelly of Russian life It plays on your, emotions, pushes your buttons and left me puzzled as to what I wanted from it. It was hard to relate to any of the characters. This alone should have made me put it down, but it did not. From the start the Nick Platt, the lead character, lets us know that there is a deep secret he is going to try and explain and use to justify his actions. His motive seems suspect from the start. This is his confession. He then takes the reader on a ride of intrigue, lust, passion and betrayal.
Kimberly H. (Stamford, CT)
Snowdrops- Underground in Moscow
It is fast paced and believable, yet I came away disappointed. I wanted stronger characters, a real hero... I wanted someone to measure up to my standards for fictional characters. Yet these characters seem like real people and behave like real people and have flaws like real people, just like me. They made selfish choices, deceived the vulnerable and took advantage of a system which set them up to fail rather than flourish... sounds like real life. Was it just a story based on what we believe could only happen in Russia or was it in fact a look too real at what happens to us when we only view the surface and act on immediate impulses?
Perhaps what this book really has to offer is a look at human nature stripped down its basic essence of what we want verses what we need.
What do we want from a book? This one left me with a chill as deep as the Russian cold, looking over my shoulder and looking deeper into the eyes of strangers. Having given us Nick's confession, the author has delivered up a tale with none of the usual suspects, much less the usual outcome.
Highly recommended - a quick interesting read by a first time author (who writes for the Economist). I felt the author must have experienced something close to this - a very real and fascinating portrait of underground doings in Moscow.
Carm D. (Omaha, NE)
This was a well written book, I liked the descriptions of places and how the temperature affects peoples moods. I wasn't comfortable with the description of the Russian people, or the people who choose to work there. It seem all are corrupt with no redeeming qualities. It was quite depressing. I wanted someone to be the good guy, but there were no good guys in this story.
Bonnie B. (Port St. Lucie, FL)
Moscow - "that city of neon lust and frenetic sin"
' "Snowdrop" said Steve. "Your friend is a snowdrop".
Jen S. (Marple Public Library, Broomall, PA)
A Dark Russian Thriller: Snowdrops by A.D. Miller
That's what they call them, he told me - that's what they call the bodies that come to light with the thaw. Drunks mostly, and homeless people who give up and lie down in the snow, and the odd vanished murder victim. Snowdrops.'
A. D. Miller has written a compelling noir novel of love, lust, and betrayal in Moscow, where nothing is as it seems. Nick is an attorney currently working in London and this book takes the form of his remembrances of his time in Moscow as he tells them to his English fiancee. It is about how he meets Masha and Katya on the metro and how their lives become intertwined. It is about deals involving oil rigs and selling apartments. The novel is about many things but, ultimately, it is about how far will a man go in deceiving himself that he is doing good when he knows that he is taking part in deceptive and harmful acts.
I could not put the book down. It is a literary page-turner that grabbed me from the get-go. It would be a shame if this does not have a wide readership. It is THAT good.
"Snowdrops" is a dark Russian thriller, with tricky characters I was never sure I could trust. Written in the first person, the narrator, Nick Platt is a British lawyer living in Moscow. His voice seems sincere, relating his Russian experiences to his fiance, but is his story believable, or is he just trying to justify his actions? There's a strong sense of foreboding right from the beginning, and it continues throughout the story, with failed financial dealings, broken families and missing neighbors. While I was able to predict the ending, I enjoyed the time I spent with Nick. "Snowdrops" will appeal to readers who enjoy business-thrillers with a European twist.