Brant Antonson studied Russian as a young man. Two visits to Russia, instilled in him a deep love for the land and its people. After travelling extensively throughout Europe, Mongolia, the U.S., Canada and China, Antonson found himself armed with a teaching certificate and some rudimentary Russian.

Those language skills weren’t good enough for the 31-year-old Canadian from Vancouver. He wanted to “learn ‘Russian’ not just penetrate the thick opaqueness of the language enough to buy cigarettes, but feel what it’s like to communicate informally in the dominate tongue of 300 million people.”

Of Russia: A Year Inside (Trafford $19.99) recounts Antonson’s adventures as he travels to Voronezh, eleven hours south of Moscow, to spend a year inside a country struggling with a clash between history and the future, to teach English to university students. Picking his way along the rocky roads of romance and deception, Antonson unveils how his wit did as much to get him into trouble as it did to keep him out of it.


Of Russia: A Year Inside (Trafford 2014) $19.99 978-1425180492

[BCBW 2014]