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All the Kremlin's Men is a gripping narrative of an accidental king and a court out of control. Based on an unprecedented series of interviews with Vladimir Putin's inner circle, this book presents a radically different view of power and politics in Russia. The image of Putin as a strongman is dissolved. In its place is a weary figurehead buffeted--if not controlled--by the men who at once advise and deceive him.
The regional governors and bureaucratic leaders are immovable objects, far more powerful in their fiefdoms than the president himself. So are the gatekeepers-those officials who guard the pathways to power-on whom Putin depends as much as they rely on him. The tenuous edifice is filled with all of the intrigue and plotting of a Medici court, as enemies of the state are invented and wars begun to justify personal gains, internal rivalries, or one faction's biased advantage.
A bestseller in Russia, All the Kremlin's Men is a shocking revisionist portrait of the Putin era and a dazzling reconstruction of the machinations of courtiers running riot.
"Of the many accounts written about the Russian president, Mikhail Zygar's insider's guide to his court is one of the most compelling...The book charts not just the machinations of the various players...It also acutely traces the evolution of Putin's mind." --The Guardian
"A tale of Russian politics based on personalities, ego and ambition, rather than policy, convictions or ideology...The stream of court intrigue gives 'All the Kremlin's Men' the juicy allure of a Russian thriller." --The Economist
"Mikhail Zygar's voice remains one of the most important ones in the rapidly deteriorating media freedom environment in Russia. As a reporter and later as editor-in-chief of Dozhd-TV, Mikhail has been a true advocate for quality journalism and high ethical standards. Anyone interested in journalism and free media should listen to his insights and vast experience. --Dunja Mijatovic, OSCE Representative on the Freedom of the Media
"[All the Kremlin's Men] is based on profound research, dozens and hundreds of interviews, and many years of attentive and thoughtful observation. All of that is deep within, and what the reader sees immediately is a 230-page story, bright, well-written, excellent text, truly an exciting piece of non-fiction adventure." --Galina Yuzefovich, literary critic, Meduza
"I read this book in one night, truly a page-turner. It leaves a profoundly scary impression: that's real 'House of Cards.'"--Lev Lurie, writer and historian
"Mikhail Zygar is one of the heroes of Putin's Russia, courageously trying to practice honest journalism in a country where honesty increasingly has become an occupational hazard. He is uniquely qualified to take on the subject of Putin and his entourage, and he presents the story of the past 15 years in a way that punctures myths and opens our eyes to events we only thought we understood. He does so with inside reporting, insightful analysis and a cheerful refusal to treat pomposity with respect. --Fred Hiatt, Washington Post