Olga Pogodina-Kuzmina

"«Uranium» is nothing less than the exciting experience of fully immersing yourself into history, its reconstruction illuminating the mentalities of the time, but also trying to understand many of the central contradictions of that time."

"«Uranium» is an important and hopefully symptomatic event for modern Russian prose. The willingness to speak with understanding about the Soviet era, but without effort and without intrusive political allusions, combined with the desire not only to cause fear, pain and discomfort to the reader, but also to make it interesting."

"Directors, KGB members, simple workers, engineers, intellectuals, prisoners, deportees, partisans, guards – the novel is densely populated with characters and none of them is a cardboard cut-out."

"«Uranium» is also a reconstruction of Soviet reality, a special part of which is the history of the Gulag. Criminal and ‘political’, ‘red’ and ‘black’ authorities, amnesty, stage pigs and insurgents, camp customs and jargon – all very realistic, so that the reader is immersed into the ‘cold summer of fifty-three'."

"The author skillfully composes a ‘roundel of heroes’: the director of the factory and the criminal thug; the beautiful farmer and the bureaucrat’s daughter; the partisans hiding in the forest, fighting for an independent Estonia and the spy hiding from everyone; the saboteur and... And beside them all, Lavrenti Beria, curator of the Soviet atomic project, and even the poet Igor Severyanin, the most famous Russian resident of Estonia between the wars. Their fates are expertly woven into a fine crime story, at the end of which not everyone will survive. The central moment is of course the death of Stalin, which releases an energy no less lethal than the enriched uranium."

"If readers still have illusions about the author's condemnation of the bloody regime or, conversely, her admiration for the first post-war years, they are wrong. This is a novel about historical necessity. The characters simply live and reflect according to the logic of their time. The author is not in the mood to blame anyone."