Between Dog and Wolf


Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry
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SKU: 978-1911648659 Category:

19 October 2023
ISBN 978-1911648659
Cover design © Luke Bird
Front cover artwork by
B format paperback with flaps
384 pages

The hour between dog and wolf is twilight, when it is hard to distinguish between known and unknown, right and wrong. When one state has ended and another has not quite begun. In 1980s Russia, Soviet policies, cruel but familiar, are giving way to untested concepts such as glasnost and perestroika.  

Four teenagers – Anya, Milka, Petya and Aleksey, whose lives, like those of their Western counterparts, are fuelled by sex, alcohol and cigarettes – yearn for a world of Levi’s, Queen, foreign travel and the freedom to choose their fates. Instead, like their ancestors, they encounter heartbreak and tragedy. With a nod to Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard, crumbling dachas surrounded by apple orchards, the scenes of idyllic summers, are slated for destruction as capitalism corrupts and corrodes the best of the past without bringing a promise of renewal.  

Yet while depicting a bloody and desperate era, this exceptional debut novel pulsates with life. It is radiant with friendship and love, the power of international literature, values and politics, as its characters struggle to survive, to save their country and one another. 


‘At last, from Russia, the voice of a woman of my generation, writing in Between Dog and Wolf of dancing with other girls at school discos before Brezhnev died, of learning to love in a cold climate, and of navigating the choppy waters of the past. I so enjoyed this novel.’
Sara Wheeler, author of Glowing Still and Terra Incognita

‘Achingly sad.’
—New York Post

‘A timeless tale of memory, desire, dreams lost and altered, love changed and unchanged.’
Yiyun Li, author of Must I Go

‘[A] Stunning debut . . . Gorcheva-Newberry pulls off a tragic and nostalgic love letter to a much-tried generation. This is a winner.’
Publishers weekly (starred review)

‘Gorcheva-Newberry does the reader a great service, offering a peek behind the iron curtain and its veil of propoganda . . . If there is such a thing as clear-eyed sentimentality, Between Dog and Wolf evokes it.’
Bookpage (starred review)

‘Gorcheva-Newberry conveys the poignance of adolescent urgency with a poet’s elliptical dash Between Dog and Wolf is a great pleasure.’
— Christine Schutt, author of Pure Hollywood

‘One system yields to another that ends up looking mighty similar to the one that came before, and with each upheaval comes a steep price that citizens are forced to pay. Gorcheva-Newberry beautifully renders these historical trends using Chekhov as a blueprint in this moving, tragic, and distinctly Russian tale.’
Harvard Review

‘An intensely evocative and gorgeously written coming-of-age story.’
Minneapolis Star Tribune (Starred)

‘In Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry’s debut, it is the children of the Perestroika generation who offer lived stories of growth and survival despite a destabilized world.’
Caitlin Stout, Chicago Review of Books

‘A magnificent story about the desperate times of Generation Perestroika . . . Rich with imagery . . . A tour de force.’
Mark Zvonkovic, Midwest Book Review

‘Every reader knows what it’s like to lose a friend, but not everyone knows the loss of a nation. Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry knows both. Her novel immerses us in the tense, passionate, bloody best friendship of two unforgettable young women in the last years of the Soviet state. It is aching and sexy, clear-eyed and heartbreaking, honest and necessary. You will devour it. Between Dog and Wolf is an exquisite, explosive debut.’
Julia Phillips, author of Disappearing Earth

‘Charming and tragic, hopeful and disillusioned, profoundly intimate and sensitive to history, Between Dog and Wolf evokes Soviet perestroika in all its contradictions. With exquisite lyricism, Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry recalls what it meant to grow up in Moscow in the 1980s, when both she and her nation were on the cusp of unknowable futures.’
Ken Kalfus, author of Envy and 2 A.M. in Little America

‘A beautiful portrayal of life lived in enormous change and upheaval, rooted in the history of a vast country. It is a novel worth of the master, Chekhov, whose great play we see echoed in it.’
Richard Bausch, author of Peace

‘Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry has given us a deeply personal coming-of-age story with the unapologetic sensuality and impressive scope of a Gabriel García Márquez novel . . . This is a sublime novel.’
Christine Sneed, author of The Virginity of Famous Men and Paris, He Said

‘Beautiful novelistic debut . . . Gorcheva-Newberry is among the most subtle and evocative writers I have read in many years. This novel is a gem, and its author is a major new voice in contemporary fiction. This may be the first time you’ve heard of her. But it will not be the last.’
Steve Yarborough, author of The Unmade World

‘Extraordinary. Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry delivers an electrifying novel, brimming with passion, pathos, and searing insights into Russia’s turbulent and richly-textured past. I literally didn’t want the novel to end.’
Jennifer Cody Epstein, author of Wunderland

‘Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry exquisitely chronicles the pervasive losses and loves of her four unforgettable ‘perestroika generation’ characters. Between Dog and Wolf is a fitting homage to the great Chekhov himself.’
Cristina García, author of Here in Berlin and Dreaming in Cuban

Kristina Gorcheva-Newberry was born in Armenia and raised in Soviet Russia. She moved to the U.S. in 1995, after having witnessed perestroika and the fall of the Iron Curtain.

Writing in English, her second language, Kristina has published fifty stories and received ten Pushcart prize nominations. She is the winner of the Raz/Shumaker Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Fiction for her debut collection of stories, What Isn’t Remembered, long-listed for the 2022 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize and shortlisted for the 2022 William Saroyan International Prize.

Between Dog and Wolf, published to rapturous reviews in the USA as The Orchard, is her first novel.

Coming soon…

The New York Post, 17 December 2022: Best books of 2022: Top 30 must-read titles of the year

The New York Post, 13 October 2022: Favourites from Priyanka Chopra-Jonas

The Harvard Review, 5 July 2022: Review by Olive Fellows

Tipsy Tolstoy, Ep 56: Russian Literature for the Inebriated

Washington Independent Review of Books, 24 May 2022: Interview with Cathy Alter

Blue Ridge PBS: Write around the corner, interview with Rose Martin

Radio IQ, 11 May 2022: Interview with Luke Church 

All of It, WNYC New York Public Radio, 6 April 2022: Interview with Alison Stewart

WFIR New Talk Radio, 4 May 2o22: Interview with Gene Marrano

Christine Sneed, 20 April 2022: Interview with Christine Sneed

BookPage, 15 March 2022: Starred review by Thane Tierney

Publishers Weekly, 12 August 2o21: Starred Review

New York Post, 17 December 2023: Best Books of 2022: Top 30 must-read title of the year

German edition 

US edition

Dutch edition

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