The Queen of Spades and Other Stories
Illustrated by Anna and Elena Balbusso
Introduced by Rachel Polonsky
Translated by Alan Myers
Pushkin's celebrated and influential short stories, presented alongside the work of acclaimed illustrators Anna and Elena Balbusso.
This authoritative collection contains Pushkin’s most celebrated and influential prose. Nowhere is Puskin's famous economy of expression starker than in the eponymous story, his only piece of prose fiction to garner immediate contemporary acclaim. It is an audacious, beguiling tale of greed and obsession. As introducer Rachel Polonsky writes, ‘With its diamond-hard, flawlessly clear surface and its unfathomable suggestive depth, “The Queen of Spades” is literature’s supreme tease.’ The story of ill-fortuned Hermann and his dalliance with the high-society gambling tables of St Petersburg draws the reader into an enthralling and unwinnable game. Questions of chance, fate and supernatural forces are maddeningly unanswered as Hermann foolishly pursues the elderly Countess and her secrets.
‘Two fixed ideas cannot co-exist in the moral sphere, just as two bodies cannot occupy the same space in the physical world’