About the Writers


Dmitry Bykov

Dmitry Bykov
Photo credit: Igor Ishankov

Dmitry Bykov is one of Russia’s most colorful, versatile, and recognizable public intellectuals. He writes poetry, fiction, biographies and criticism, and is a co-founder of the Citizen Poet project. His biography of Boris Pasternak won Russia’s 2006 National Bestseller and Big Book awards; he won the National Bestseller again in 2011 for Ostromov, or The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.





Mariam Petrosyan

Mariam Petrosyan
Photo Credit: Genna Nemykh

Born in Armenia when it was part of the Soviet Union, Mariam Petrosyan started writing her only novel, The House, In Which… as a teenager.



Vladimir Sorokin

Vladimir Sorokin
Photo credit: Igor Ishankov

Described as “the Tarantino of Russian literature,” Sorokin’s books were banned during the Soviet era. One of Russia’s best-known contemporary writers, Sorokin received the People’s Booker Prize in 2001 for Sbornik Rasskazov (Collected Stories).



Anna Starobinets

Anna Starobinets
Photo credit: Igor Ishankov

Starobinets’s short stories and novels defy the traditional horror genre by crossing over into fantasy, mysticism, and futuristic dystopia. Her short story collection, An Awkward Age, was a finalist for the Russian National Bestseller Prize in 2006 and has been translated into seven languages.





Stephen Fry

​Host of Russia’s Open Book
Graphic Design: Andy A’Court

Host Stephen Fry is an actor, author, and activist. His film credits include Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, Jeeves and Wooster, and The Hobbit. He currently stars in the new Broadway production of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night.