Barbero, Alessandro

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    A middle-aged judge driven by curiosity and the intellectual challenge of his work, a nervous and neurotic young historian willing to run all manner of risks to uncover the state crimes of the forties, a nerdy, well-educated and good-natured young journalist motivated principally by the desire to enjoy life and not to dwell on the miseries of the past, a KGB general once responsible for some of the purges and now an Islamist radical, an inept, capricious and delightfully self-aware Jewish actor, and an Islamic cleric loyal to the Soviet Union, whose murder has so many repercussions, all these carefully constructed characters could be found in any society but Alessandro Barbero has brought them to life in one of the most elusive, unstable and neglected historical realities: Gorbachev’s Russia.