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Showing posts from July 25, 2016

Laurus, Book 19 of 2016: A Tale of Old Russia that Stretches to Florence and Jerusalem

Eleven of the books I have read so far this year are by Russian authors writing about life in Russia from the present back through the last two centuries.This book goes several centuries further back into Russian history.
Laurus by Eugene Vodolazkin showed me a Russia that I have seen only in fleeting glimpses. We follow the title character, Laurus, from when he loses his parents as a child until the end of his long life as a healer and a holy man between the mid 1400s to the 1520s.
This is a medieval book by setting and by the parade of wretched, reverent, hopeful, fearful and foul characters that people the pages of this wonderful book.After Laurus (Arseny in his early life) loses his parents he moves in with his grandfather, a healer named Christopher.Arseny follows his grandfather and becomes a healer, but as his life progresses, Arseny relies less on the herbs and lore of Christopher and more on the healing gift he has from God.
Arseny becomes adept at healing plague victims.He h…