A group of Soviet authors are shocked to watch the science fiction story they wrote 40 years ago slowly come to life in this fantastic tale from the author of Swiftly
In Russia, the year is 1946 and with the Nazis recently defeated, Stalin gathers half a dozen of the top Soviet science fiction authors in a dacha in the countryside. Convinced that the defeat of America is only a few years away—and equally convinced that the Soviet Union needs a massive external threat to hold it together—Stalin orders the writers to compose a massively detailed and highly believable story about an alien race poised to invade the earth. The little group of writers gets down to the task and spends months working until new orders come from Moscow to immediately halt the project. The scientists obey and live their lives until, in the aftermath of Chernobyl, the survivors gather again, because something strange has happened: the story they invented in 1946 is starting to come true.
At the end of World War II, translator and would-be sf writer Konstantin Andreiovich Skvorecky, along with several colleagues, meets secretly with Soviet leader Josef Stalin to create a fictional "alien attack" in the hopes of uniting the disparate groups within the Communist Party against a common foe. Forty years later, the attack seems to be coming true. British sf author Roberts (Gradisil) demonstrates his knack for quirkily speculative fiction, with elegant plot twists, seriocomic passages, and a suitably gullible protagonist whose instincts see him through to the end. VERDICT Wildly imaginative yet delivering the absurdist punch associated with Kafka and Orwell, this novel of high spirits disguised as fact provides a field day for the literary enthusiast as well as the UFO fan.