A Captive of Time

by Olga Ivinskaya.Doubleday, $12.50. During the last fourteen years of Pasternak’s life, Olga Ivinskaya was his mistress, helper, errand girl, agent, and, in the eye of the Soviet government, whipping boy.
When the Kremlin was annoyed with Pasternak, Ivinskaya was shipped off to a prison camp. Her role required great devotion. It also provided an immense education in the devious and lunatic operations of literary politics in the Soviet Union. She writes tenderly on the first topic and furiously on the second, and provides much evidence on both. This indomitable woman still lives in Russia, where her book has not been published. Translated by Max Hayward.