The Russian Revolution

1917 by N. N. Sukhanov. Translated and edited by Joel Carmichael. Oxford University Press, $10.00.
This abridgment of a seven-volume memoir never before translated into English is a unique document –the fullest eyewitness account of every phase of the 1917 Revolution. The author, an outstanding socialist theoretician, found himself at the center of events when the Revolution broke out in St. Petersburg, and was a key figure in the formation of the first revolutionary government. Sukhanov was. however, a man with a fiercely independent turn of mind — a quality which cost him his life in the Stalinist purges — and he was able to describe the great revolutionary drama with a degree of detachment which makes his record remarkable for its honesty. He had, moreover. the temper and talents of a great chronicler. He was curious, meddlesome, gossipy, adept at turning out a thumbnail sketch, and alert to a good story. And his narrative style, as translated by Joel Carmichael, has considerable force and flavor.