Debut novel by ‘Russian Proust’ to be published in English for the first time
The translation of Deceit by ‘groundbreaking’ author Yuri Felsen, who died in Auschwitz in 1943, is set to come out next May
The debut novel by Yuri Felsen, an author once regarded as the “Russian Proust” whose work has been forgotten since he died in Auschwitz in 1943, is set to be published in English for the first time.
Felsen, the pseudonym of the Russian émigré author Nikolai Freudenstein, was born in St Petersburg in 1894, emigrating after the Russian revolution and settling in Paris in 1923. He was seen as one of the leading Russian writers of his time, ranked alongside Vladimir Nabokov, but when France was occupied in the second world war his escape to Switzerland failed, and he was killed in Auschwitz’s gas chambers in February 1943. His manuscripts and letters were lost – possibly destroyed – after his arrest, and his work is almost unknown today.