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States of delusion

Paranoia, Victor Martinovich’s debut novel is banned in his home country of Belarus–is it worth the fuss?

By David Anderson  

Belarus: Europe's last dictatorship

If not quite a whirlwind, Victor Martinovich’s debut novel Paranoia has certainly stirred up a few gusts of interest, not least with the Belarusian state authorities. After two days in the bookshops in 2009, it disappeared. A story of doomed love and police-surveillance set against the backdrop of a lightly fictionalised Minsk, the book has now resurfaced in an English translation by Diane Nemec Ignashev, published by Northwestern University Press.

Making the most of its publication history, the English edition…

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