jamiebowen0306 (jamiebowen0306) wrote,

I finished "Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar" by Simon Sebag Montifiore today.

I found "Stalin: The Court of the Red Tsar" a hard read. One of the points of biography (I believe at least) is to explain someone's actions, attitudes and intentions in the world, and I'm not altogether sure that this is explained to my satisfaction here.

Don't get me wrong, this book is meticulously researched and if you want to know what happened in Stalin's Kremlin, you can't go far wrong with this book. But if you want to get your head round why he did it, Sebag-Montifiore is less effective.

I defy anyone to give me a good explanation as to why someone could kill millions of their own people in the name of progress, so maybe I was expecting too much of this book. The fact is, however, I didn't find the book's explanations of how Stalin could kill so many of his people particularly believable, which is probably why I struggled with this book for so long.
Tags: book, review

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