Rights sold: Croatia - Zagrebacka naklada, Russia - AST
Student Booker Prize (2007)
God of Rain is a short novel, dynamically plotted and with none of the excesses we have come to associate with “youth” novels. Quite the opposite, it is the story of Anya, a nice, well-educated young woman, who graduates from college as promising young intellectual. She starts her philological studies in Moscow University, but falls into a deep depression, and converts to active Orthodoxy. Her conversion leaves her firmly determined to go to live in a monastery. But instead she falls in love with her spiritual father and ultimately emigrates to Canada. Throughout all of this, she remains a virgin and a profound spiritual seeker.
In this novel we have a fresh view on the involvement of the young people in the new Orthodox wave that seems to be overflowing in Russia these days; an important internal analysis of the dilemma of the believers and of the priest. In Anya—a nice, “clean thinking” young woman—we have a character long overdue in modern literature; and the plot is tightly woven and psychologically insightful.
The novel is meant to be read in one breath.
...Kucherskaya succeeded in being grateful. She writes about a happiness granted to her protagonist by an outcast, confused, bitter, but so genuine adolescence. (Andrew Nemzer)
Should we say the new novel by Kucherskaya is good? Of course, it is… (Evgeny Berzharsky, Itogi)
Maya Kucherskaya once again demonstrates her expertise in a literary rope walking … (Vladimir Zamirsky, Komsomolskaya Pravda)
I've always thought that a good humanities training is useful for an aspiring writer, and Kucherskaya's novel proves it: Her style is lucid and often gripping. Moreover, the subject matter is quite fresh. (Victor Sonkin, The Moscow Times)