FROST IN RUSSIA by F.D. Reeve

FROST IN RUSSIA

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A day-by-day account of Frost's front-page tour in the Soviet Union, the most unlikely outpost one would have thought the Cincinnatus of Americana, the apostle of Emorsonian Individualism, could visit, as recorded by the Wesleyan professor who served as interpreter and handyman. The events took place in the summer of 1962. The style is what is charitably described as unobtrusive, but the personality of Frost is not: affectionately acerbic, shrewd, tart, showmanly. It appears he went not as a State Department emissary engaged in a cultural putsch, but to talk horse sense with Khrushchev over Berlin. In that encounter-memorably underplayed here- Frost said that if Khrushchev offered a simple solution to the problem the US would accept it, to which Stalin's former factotum replied: ""You have the soul of a poet"". There are interesting glimpses into literary penetralia: brash, bubbly Yevtushenko, sad Akhmatova, lots of fond, friendly dinners, readings and gatherings- all rather different frankly from the tense, quasi-terroristic atmosphere other reports have emphasized. But then the book is upbeat in spirit and notational in approach, with the wonderful figure of Frost all over the place, combating the bizerre, lighting the dark.

Pub Date: March 26th, 1964
Publisher:  ttle, Brown-A.M.P.