Omon Ra is a brilliant, satirical novel. I absolutely loved it, laughing
and reading passages out loud. Omon is a boy growing up in Russia at
the dawn of the space age, longing to become a cosmonaut. When his dream
comes true, he finds that the Russian space program isn’t exactly what
he imagined. From this, his first novel, to his most recent, The Sacred
Book of the Werewolf, it is easy to see why Victor Pelevin is a
sensation in his native Russia. What is harder to understand is why he
hasn’t caught on here.
— Sara, Atlanta
"An inventive comedy as black as outer space itself. Makes The Right Stuff looks like a NASA handout."—Tibor Fischer.
Victor Pelevin's novel Omon Ra has been widely praised for its poetry and its wickedness, a novel in line with the great works of Gogol and Bulgakov: "full of the ridiculous and the sublime," says The Observer [London]. Omon is chosen to be trained in the Soviet space program the fulfillment of his lifelong dream. However, he enrolls only to encounter the terrifying absurdity of Soviet protocol and its backward technology: a bicycle-powered moonwalker; the outrageous Colonel Urgachin ("a kind of Sovier Dr. Strangelove"—The New York Times); and a one-way assignment to the moon. The New Yorker proclaimed: "Omon's adventure is like a rocket firing off its various stages—each incident is more jolting and propulsively absurd than the one before."
About the Author
Victor Pelevin is one of Russia’s most successful post-Soviet writers. He won the Russian Booker prize in 1993 Born on November 22, 1962 in Moscow, he attended the Moscow Institute of Power Engineering, and the Institute of Literature. He’s now been published throughout Europe. His books include A Werewolf Problem in Central Russia, Omon Ra, The Blue Lantern, The Yellow Arrow, and The Hall of the Singing Caryatids.
Born in Yorkshire, England, Andrew Bromfield is a translator of Russian literature and an editor and co-founder of the literary journal Glas.
And in its final moments, about what happens when this poor boy actually finds himself rocketing toward the moon, are surely the most memorable passages I read this year. — Dwight Garner
A freshly jaundiced view of a distorted world.
Pelevin is a master absurdist, a brilliant satirist of all things Soviet, but also of things human: our corruptible dreams, petty squabbles, half-assed inventions and, above all, our tendency to allow the purer parts of our nature to be co-opted.