About My Books

My name is Elvira Baryakina, and I write historical novels set in the first half of the 20th century.

Whenever I discover a fascinating new topic, I find myself on a journey leading me to places as disparate as Moscow, Buenos Aires, Shanghai and Los Angeles.

My goal is to collect small fragments of stories that have been scattered across different countries and reconstruct a chain of neglected historical events that provides a much bigger picture. To some extent, it is detective work, but it’s not criminals I’m chasing after but elusive answers to questions that have been bothering me ever since I was a child.

I am studying the USSR—not so much as a state but as a mighty quasi-religious order, which had its own domain, relics and crusades all over the world.

The Soviet Union succeeded in subjugating vast territories and millions of people and was the wellspring of unimaginable atrocities as well as striking achievements and exploits. It was admired, imitated and loathed.

elvira baryakina website

But most of all I am interested in the people who dared to challenge the Soviet regime. If you were in its clutches, it was unthinkable to resist—it could grind you into the dust in an instant. Nevertheless, there were brave men and women who refused to become dehumanized cogs in a giant system. My books are about these people.



book 1

Klim Rogov is a foreign journalist, and when Russia has a Bolshevik coup in 1917, he has a chance to leave the country and escape the violence of the civil war. He tries to take Nina, his fiancée, with him, but precious time is lost. Klim decides to stay with her and protect her while he still can.


book 2

In 1922, white colonialists in China see themselves as an impregnable supreme race. But when thousands of devastated Russian refugees fleeing the Bolsheviks arrive in Shanghai, the propriety of racism comes under threat.

A Russian journalist, Klim Rogov, finds himself with his back to the wall, rejected by both the whites and the Chinese. But even being one of the “fallen gods” who should be out of sight, he still tries to rise from ashes.


book 3

In 1927, a Russian political exile, Klim Rogov furtively returns to the Soviet Union to find his missing wife. Unexpectedly, he becomes an “American journalist,” and this gives him countless privileges, along with the “privilege” to face the espionage charge fabricated by Stalin’s secret service.