Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Guest Author - Daphne Kalotay

Today I have the honour and pleasure of introducing Daphne Kalotay, author of the historical novel Russian Winter as part of her blog tour.

Photos courtesy of Author/publisher

The UK cover

Blog tour schedule......

Monday, February 6th: She Reads Novels
Wednesday, February 8th: Reading With Tea
Thursday, February 9th: Fleur Fisher in her world
Tuesday, February 14th: DizzyC’s Little Book Blog
Wednesday, February 15th: Pining for the West
Thursday, February 16th: Chuck’s Miscellany
Monday, February 20th: one more page
Tuesday, February 21th: I hug my books
Wednesday, February 22th: The Sweet Bookshelf
Thursday, February 23rd: A Book Sanctuary

1)  Daphne, Please tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a writer and teacher whose first book, Calamity and Other Stories, was published by Doubleday in 2005; I’m a big fan of short fiction and love writers like Chekhov and William Trevor.  Russian Winter is my first novel and brings together my love of dance and my passion for Russian literature.  In it, I hope to show that history is the thread that unites us all, whether or not we are aware of the ways we are connected to people we may never know.    
2) How did you come to write Russian Winter?
I wanted to write a story about an American student of Russian literature who falls in love during the same winter that she is helping out an old woman—a former Bolshoi ballerina—who is preparing to move into a nursing home.  The dancer owns an amber necklace of mysterious provenance that seems to have strong significance to her, and the student begins to tease out the truth behind it.  But the story was very long, and I realized I needed the space of a novel to fully explore the potential subplots. In the novel, the amber necklace is the link between the narrative threads.
3) Researching this book must have been very interesting; what part of the research did you enjoy the most?

I loved reading first-person accounts of life behind the Iron Curtain, as uncomfortable as many of those narratives were. 
I kept a list of details about Moscow and daily life in the USSR and tried to learn as much as I could about that time period.  I also traveled to Russia, but only after I’d completed the book, because I was worried that seeing Moscow’s current incarnation would upset the historical version I had created in my mind.

3) What are you working on next?
I’ve been writing another novel, about professional musicians living in Boston.  I’m still very interested in what it means to be an artist, and in the transformative power of the arts. 
4) What book/s is/are on your bedside table?
I’m reading three books right now:  Patti Smith’s memoir Just Kids, Alex Gilvarry’s wonderful novel From the Memoirs of a Non-Enemy Combatant, and the letters of Penelope Fitzgerald, a writer I particularly love

Thank you, Daphne for taking time to answer my questions.
 Daphne's website, her Facebook page, and the reading group guide.



  1. This was such a good book! Looking forward to the next book from this author.

  2. I am in total agreement with you Marg.
    Fantastic read.


  3. I am a huge fan of historical novels and this particular book looks really interesting and very beautiful. I loved having a look at Daphne Kalotay's website and being that 'Russian Winter' is her first novel, i am sure that a lot of people will be very excited as to her writing future. I know personally an author who is part of the historical society and through knowing her i can understand a little of how tough it is to write for this particular genre- hence i feel that Daphne is also very corageous and i would like to thank you for a brilliant book giveaway! xxx
    From: Miss. Lucinda Fountain

  4. Thanks for featuring Ms. Kaloty for the tour!


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