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The Complexity of Lives

Marina Osipova Author Interview

Marina Osipova Author Interview

Too Many Wolves in the Local Woods follows the journey of two women during WWII and how their lives affect their descendants. What were some important themes you wanted to explore in this book?

This book, though it reads as a standalone, is book 2 in my Love and Fate series. Those who read How Dare the Birds Sing must remember Lyuba, Natasha and Natashen’ka, and also Ulya-Ursula who appeared in just one episode then became a main character in Too Many Wolves in the Local Woods. In this book, I wanted to explore the complexity of lives and how war can intertwine them unexpectantly and how irrevocably the actions of the characters can influence the fates of their descendants. Two other themes were important for me to investigate: how thin the line is between hero and killer under war circumstances and the meaning of patriotism, justice, and morality during difficult times such as my main heroine and many real-life people faced during the Nazi occupation.

Did you put anything from your own life into this book?

My life is irrevocably connected with all I write about WWII, the Great Patriotic War as it is called in Russia and the former Soviet republics. I was raised on stories about this horrific war in which the Soviet Union alone lost about 27 million human lives. I remember, as children, we visited the frontline heroes or their family members, listening to the tales about their fight for the Motherland. My own experience of it is reflected in the epilogue when Natashen’ka visits an old partisan who fought together with her mother against the occupants.

This novel is exceptionally well written. What were some goals you set for yourself as a writer with this book?

With this book, I delved into the topic of an intelligence officer working behind enemy lines that was, if not quite new—after all, I read books and saw films related to the subject—was uncharted territory for me as a writer. Only my future readers can say if I met the challenge of the task.

When will this novel be available?

Too Many Wolves in the Local Woods will be available as part of the collection of WWII novels, The Road to Liberation, on May 5, 2020.

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Too Many Wolves in The Local Woods: A Novel of Love and Fate

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Too Many Wolves in The Local Woods, written by Marina Osipova, is a stunning tale about two captivating women living in the distressed Soviet Union and fighting for a cause they both hold dear. The German Army occupies Byelorussia, crossing the paths of our two leading women. Tragedy strikes setting off a series of dramatic events that propel the story and our character forward on a perilous journey. We fast forward to years later and the story focuses on the daughter of one of the daring women that fought bravely in WWII. I really enjoyed how the story unfolds at this point because we get to see the stunning realization that arises in a child who has learned something amazing about their parent.

Marina Osipova beautifully outlines the concept of a child not fully knowing their parent and an awareness of the life they may have lived. Parents sometimes fail to tell us the extent of their life stories, only telling us the image they want us to have of them. When we unravel their true identities it can be eye opening, effecting some reflections and self realizations, and correlations as to why you may have specific thought processes in place. During major life events in the world, we always wonder what role our parents played. Marina Osipova did a fantastic job of capturing this feeling. The author deftly describes that relationship and playing on the two characters and the differences. Though the story felt somewhat long, the extensive descriptions allow the reader to feel like they are embedded in the life of our characters and vividly portrays a Soviet Union that is under stress due to the war. Feeling the restrictions and the coldness made it feel realistic, but some of the dialogue felt anemic in comparison. There were some areas that focused on descriptions, which painted a wonderful world, but felt somewhat lengthy.

Marina Osipova felt dedicated to this piece, exhibiting passion and knowledge for the area and time frame. Too Many Wolves in The Local Woods is an insightful story that truly feels connected to the past. This book is an interesting take on a woman’s role during WWII and what beliefs were relevant for that time. This is a strong tale about women and I highly recommend it.

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