What Russian books do you read?

Inspired by one of our moderators :slight_smile:

Hello, all members of the big LINGQ community who learn Russian, what Russian books are you reading or have you read? Maybe you have any suggestions for other Russian learners?


Read “Денискины рассказы”. I heard Russian language learners like to read this book. I’m going to read this book myself soon.

I think books for children might be easier for learners, so I would recommend Николай Носов “Незнайка”. It’s a book about a naughty and silly boy who lives in some fairyland and always gets in troubles and makes up interesting things.

And if you want a serious book, then Александр Фадеев “Молодая Гвардия” (1st edition, ealier than 1951) is my favourite. This book is about young Soviet partizans at WWII. Makes you want to reach success, be honest, cooperate with your friends and never give up. Also there are a little of communism, but I think it doesn’t matter for those who searches phylosophy in books. Also this book might be useful for those who are interested in current politics in the Ukraine.

1 Like

I recently picked up a book of Hans Christian Anderson Fairy Tales in Russian.

1 Like

Hello Andrey, thank you for your contribution!

I am a native Russian speaker and I very much enjoyed reading different stories of Nikolai Nosov when I was a child. As a tutor of Russian as a foreign language I wonder what my students can read =) I agree with you, you can definitely recommend the stories of Nikolai Nosov to the learners of Russian as a foreign language.

For those who like to listen too, here is the link to one of my most favorite audio stories of Nikolai Nosov: Мишкина Каша: “Mishka’s porridge”: - YouTube

This is a great choice! The stories we already know are easier to understand in a different language :slight_smile:

This is a link to one of my favorite cartoons based on the fairy tale of Hans Christian Anderson: Гадкий утенок. I know how challenging Russian can be and I hope this helps a little. :slight_smile:

1 Like

As soon as I was past learner content, I wanted to read Tolstoy and I was not disappointed. The language was easy and comfortable. But mostly it was another world, one I wanted to discover. Kreutzer Sonata, Anna Karenina (my favourite) and War and Peace. I had audio books for them all. Then Turgenev, Fathers and Sons, then Kuprin “Yama” and Ostrovsky “Бесприданница” which I enjoyed as a movie in “Жестокий романс”, one of my favourite movies, not only in Russian. I am less interested in modern books.

Thank you for your reply! My personal favourite is Chekhov and his short stories (although “Three sisters” and “The Cherry Orchard” are also very good). Have you had a chance to read those?

Nosov is on my list, so far I have only read “Метро”. As I tend to buy books in the hope of one day being able to read them, I have got a few waiting in the wings: a wonderful 1968 4-volume edition, illustrated with a few black and white drawings, of Tolstoy’s “Война и Мир”, библиотека исторического романа; a volume of German fairytales in a 1992 edition of “Сказки для детей и взрослых, Поющая косточка”; a German-Russian edition of Wilhelm Hauff, “Маленький Мук и другие сказки”. Unfortunately, the German text contains so many irritating typos that I have doubts concerning the Russian text. As it was printed in Moscow in 2002 I just hope for the best; then there is the ubiquitous “Гарри Поттер и философский камень”. Somewhere among my books there should also be a paperback about passion under palms on the beaches of the Southern Seas (at least that’s what the title promised, I think), but perhaps even I couldn’t bear to keep that kind of trash … Well, I bought it in 1997 in St Petersburg when I was still hopeful (of learning real Russian) :slight_smile:

Hello Susanne,

Sometimes it is just a struggle trying to find a good book! I have found several authors I really enjoy reading and when the stories run out I just reread them. :))

Following your suggestion, I’ve found some stories and audiobooks of Nosov’s stories. I’m trying to upload them to lingq. So far, “Автомобиль” parece divertido. Спасибо за совет!

I am very glad my suggestion helped! Thank you for contributing to the good of all Russian learners!

I have read both, and have read some of his short stories. I have an anthology of Chekhov’s plays, and a collection of his short stories. I also have an audio book version of several of his plays. Things to look forward to when I get back to Russian, now working on other languages. Cheers.

I hope you enjoy them when you get back to Russian! Удачи!

One of my favorite novels by Anton Chekhov is this. I read it in Japanese. The title has the word “boring”, but it is by no means a boring story.

Thank you for the link. This is new to me: wonderful.

I was given yet another book voucher and got three Russian books (as if I didn’t have enough textbooks…), with a few pounds spare to spend another day.

Back to the point of this thread: the books are “The Routledge Intermediate Russian Reader” by Lydia Buravova - much too advanced for me, but with such good content that I couldn’t resist. I live in hope … The other two, Рассказ-сенсация and Рассказ-провокация, are by Ignaty Dyakov [Игнатий Дьков] . Each story can serve as a kind of textbook written for adult learners in the guise of detective stories, which need to be solved. The books are suitable for use alongside A1-B1 material, according to the blurb.


1 Like

Dear SanneT

I’ve accidentally found mentioning of my name on this forum and could not pass by without saying thank you for giving my books a try. I appreciate it will take you time to form an opinion on the books, but if you have a spare moment I’d really appreciate your feedback and comments.

I have now written the third book (“Рассказ-канонизация”) aimed at B1-B2 level and hope to do some further work on the first two textbooks preparing their second editions.

Also thought to mention that all three books have audio-versions.

Thank you again!

1 Like

My Russian is horribly rusty but, I’ve started Fazil Iskander’s сандро из чегема. I read it many years ago in English translation, but the Russian in it is fairly straightforward. More Mark Twain than Tolstoy, but an enjoyable piece of the former Soviet Union.

Thinking of reading, I remember our old Russian tradition of the “house libraries”.
I wrote an article about it “Домашние библиотеки”.

You can find it in the Russian library here:

1 Like

On my night stand sits a Blackwell’s dual language book from the 1950’s - Ivan Turgenev - Poems in Prose. I carefully read it as to not break the binding. I enjoy the prose which are written from different points of view. Much of the writing is in a stream of consciousness style which to me reflects true thought. The translation doesn’t do it justice as I begin to learn more vocabulary in context.