You are here: Book Awards  The Pushkin House Russian Book Prize

The Pushkin House Russian Book Prize

Ruby by Cynthia Bond

The Pushkin House Russian Book Prize 2016 winner announced

It’s our pleasure to confirm Dominic Lieven’s Towards the Flame: Empire, War and the End of Tsarist Russia as the winner of this year’s Pushkin House Russian Book Prize, the literary award that promotes the very best writing in English on the Russian-speaking world.

Towards the Flame deftly charts Russia’s descent into the grim chaos of the First World War, written from the unique perspective of an author with deep family ties to the ruling elite of the time. Leiven’s intimacy and understanding of the period sets Russia at the centre stage of a truly global conflict, revealing the proper significance of her involvement and the resulting legacies that rumble on to the present.

Our managing director James Daunt, who has been involved in the Prize from its outset, said: "We are delighted that the judges have rewarded such a strong winner and have showcased the very best in Russian scholarship in translation."

There is little doubt that Towards the Flame will be regarded as the definitive account of its kind and Waterstones has been enormously proud to support the Pushkin House Russian Book Prize in its quest for writing of this fine standard.

Buy the book

An interview with Dominic Lieven

Watch as Dominic Lieven distills his award-winning book into the essentials in these two short videos.

​Browse the list

The 2016 prize shortlist

From its inception in 2013, Waterstones has taken a special interest in the Pushkin House Russian Book Prize, supporting the Prize’s quest to promote the very best writing in English on the Russian-speaking world.

The past three years have revealed works of outstanding quality - Former People, Douglas Smith’s poignant portrait of Russia’s fading Royal elite in the face of Bolshevik revolution; Catherine Merridale’s compelling dissection of the Kremlin in 2014’s Red Fortress; and latterly for 2015 The Last Empire, Serhii Plokhy’s masterful account of the Soviet Union playing out its fatal 1991 end game.


​Browse the list

Previous winners