The famous novel of revolutionary conversion and struggle. This novel of Russia before the Revolution is without question the masterpiece of Gorky, Russia's greatest living writer. Into one passionate, astonishing book has been gathered the spirit of the terrifying struggle against the Czar's autocracy. In it Russia stands forth in a flood of light.
Coloured by poverty and horrifying brutality, Gorky's childhood equipped him to understand - in a way denied to a Tolstoy or a Turgenev - the life of the ordinary Russian. After his father, a paperhanger and upholsterer, died of cholera, five-year-old Gorky was taken to live with his grandfather, a polecat-faced tyrant who would regularly beat him unconscious, and with his grandmother, a tender mountain of a woman and a wonderful storyteller, who would kneel beside their bed (with Gorky inside it pretending to be asleep) and give God her views on the day's happenings, down to the last fascinating details. She was, in fact, Gorky's closest friend and the epic heroine of a book swarming with characters and with the sensations of a curious and often frightened little boy.
Maxim Gorky continues to be regarded as the greatest literary representative of revolutionary Russia. Born of the people, and having experienced in his own person their sufferings and their misery, he was enabled by his extraordinary genius to voice their grievances and their aspirations for a better life as no academic could.
His international fame rests on a tremendous literary output, including the powerful play "The Lower Depths", the monumental novel of the 1905 Russian Revolution, "Mother", his vital Autobiography and, of course, his short stories. This edition of "The Collected Short Stories of Maxim Gorky" includes his benchmark masterpieces "Creatures That Once Were Men" and "Twenty-Six Men and a Girl" as well as "Chelkash and My Fellow-Traveller" among many others. The collection represents the very best of Gorky's genius.