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Grey is the Colour of Hope

Irina Ratushinskaya

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Autobiography: literary, Prose: non-fiction

The reissue of four unforgettable books by acclaimed poet, novelist and dissident Irina Ratushinskaya.

If it ever falls to you, my reader (thought God forbid!) to see your name written on a prison wall and followed by the letters 'LYMTL', that will simply mean 'Love You More Than Life'. These letters are no harder to remember than 'KGB'.

GREY IS THE COLOUR OF HOPE is the searing account of the author's experiences in a brutal Soviet labour camp. Only twenty-eight when she was imprisoned for her poetry, Irina Ratushinskaya was already regarded as a leading writer of her generation, in the line of Mandelstam and Pushkin. She nearly died from maltreatment and a series of hunger strikes before eventually finding freedom. With surprising moments of humour, her inspiring memoir reveals how a group of incarcerated women built for themselves a life of selfless courage, order and mutual support.

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