Adventures In Russia – “Midnight In Siberia” By Train! A Terrific Memoir! How Russian Culture Feels About The US!

Time To Head To Siberia – by The Legendary Trans-Siberian Railroad!

I love travel books, especially when they delve into the real lives of the people who live in the country being visited. In this case, a terrific book hears from the people of Russia about life there – and what they think of the US as well!

Midnight In Siberia! by David Greene

Here is how Amazon describes the book:

“Travels with NPR host David Greene along the Trans-Siberian Railroad capture an overlooked, idiosyncratic Russia in the age of Putin.

Far away from the trendy cafés, designer boutiques, and political protests and crackdowns in Moscow, the real Russia exists.”

Cover crop

“Midnight in Siberia” chronicles David Greene’s journey on the Trans-Siberian Railway, a 6,000-mile cross-country trip from Moscow to the Pacific port of Vladivostok. In quadruple-bunked cabins and stopover towns sprinkled across the country’s snowy landscape, Greene speaks with ordinary Russians about how their lives have changed in the post-Soviet years.

What makes the book so compelling is that each chapter is named for a person he meets – it’s not a travelogue, it’s the story of a major superpower coming to terms with the past, present and future – Russians have endured far more challenges than we realize, and the people you meet are interesting – concerned for the future but proud of who they are. It’s a terrific book!

I’ve taken you to Siberia before – remember the coldest city on earth? It’s -88 degrees here! You can see where I am by clicking here:

https://johnrieber.com/2018/01/21/the-coldest-city-on-earth-frozen-eyelashes-88-degrees-welcome-to-oymyakon-siberia/

I also shared an amazing documentary about a year in the life of Siberians:

This incredible film is from Werner Herzog, who took an 8-hour Russian TV series and turned it into a compelling look at life in Siberia – see it here:

https://johnrieber.com/2013/07/18/into-the-wild-siberias-happy-people-werner-herzogs-new-documentary/

Finally, I have also taken you on many other trains as well, to places like this:

Yes, the legendary Travel Writer Paul Theroux took a train through Russia and ended up at the top of the world! click here to see where he ended up:


https://johnrieber.com/2017/05/09/a-train-to-the-roof-of-the-world-fascinating-paul-theroux-book-incredible-tibetan-pictures/

Check out “Midnight In Siberia” – it’s terrific!



Categories: Books / Media, Exotic Travel, Memoirs, Talent/Celebrities, Technology, Travel, Travel Adventures, Travel Memoir, Uncategorized, Wacky Food

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11 replies

  1. Sounds like a wonderful book and yes I would love to read it! And it also reminds me of a trip mom took to Siberia so many years ago. Remember this? https://catsandtrailsandgardentales.com/2017/01/31/a-trip-to-siberia-and-a-coup/

  2. Looks like a fascinating read, John. Thanks for sharing.

  3. As you may recall, I have travelled widely around that country, on a few occasions. But of course, it was called the Soviet Union then. It is so vast, that it’s almost impossible to comprehend just how different the people are, in each region. I also spent the night in a 4-bunk sleeper train, but not in Siberia, it was in Uzbekistan.
    I am sure the book will be fascinating, even to those of us who have been there.,
    Best wishes, Pete.

  4. I will certainly take your steer and read this book. I have been fascinated by Russian and her people, history, culture(s) since my early teens when I started to learn the language. The Russian Soul is a real thing in my mind and it saddens me deeply that the rest of the world is so willing to parcel it up as Moscow and make little or no effort to believe or discover what else there is to this vast land. The book sounds right up my street – I wholly believe that you start with the people and their stories, get under their skin and then you have a chance of understanding a place. Thank you John. I have come a way on a short break and forgotten to bring the book I was reading. There is a Barnes and Noble four blocks away and this feels just like kismet!

    • The book delves deeply into the lives of Russians outside Moscow, and it’s a well-told story that allows them to speak honestly about their feelings for their country – and America. A great book – thanks for your comment!

    • Being Russian, I generally never pick up these books, but I will read a book which tries to present Russia differently from the usual touristy stuff or unflattering headlines (I know next to nothing about people living in Siberia, for example). I am impressed by your fascination with the Russian Soul. This is definitely something of immense depth.

      • Hello DB …. That you for reading my comment – I am always delighted to ‘meet’ Russian people. The Russian Soul is a deep and profoundly interesting subject to me. And the propaganda peddled by other countries is sickening. But this does sound as though it is a book that tells the story through real stories and that is something I can certainly learn from. Enjoy your day.

      • This book is all about the Russian soul…not touristy at ALL and NOT unflattering – an indepth look at how the people of Russia feel about their country, their place in the world, etc.

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