• "As eloquent a memorial to the anonymous little man in the Stalinist state as Dr Zhivago is to the artistic spirit in post-Czarist Russia and The First Circle to the scientific intelligentsia"

    New York Times
  • "Vasily Grossman is the Tolstoy of the USSR"

    Martin Amis
  • "Possibly the greatest chronicler of the second world war"

  • "Only Dante, in his account of Ugolino and his sons starving to death in a locked tower, has written of death from hunger with equal power"

    Robert Chandler, London Review of Books
  • "Supplies a wealth of information about the social context and Soviet terminology"

    Christopher Taylor, Guardian