Valentin Pikul

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Valentin Pikul
Valentin Pikul.jpg
Born(1928-07-13)July 13, 1928
Leningrad, Soviet Union
DiedJuly 16, 1990(1990-07-16) (aged 62)
Riga, Latvia
Genrepopular history, fiction
Notable worksAt the Last Frontier,
Requiem for Convoy PQ-17

Valentin Savvich Pikul (Russian: Валенти́н Са́ввич Пи́куль) (July 13, 1928 – July 16, 1990) was a popular and prolific Soviet historical novelist of Ukrainian-Russian heritage. He lived and worked in Riga.

Pikul's novels were grounded in extensive research, blending historical and fictional characters and often focusing on Russian nationalistic themes.[1] Pikul's best-selling 1978 novel At the Last Frontier was a dramatized telling of Rasputin's influence over the Russian imperial court. Richard Stites says he was "a name hardly known to literary scholars but the most widely read author in the Soviet Union from the seventies to today [i.e., 1991]...[2] Pikul's works were wildly popular: more than 20 million copies were sold in his lifetime [1].

Little of Pikul's work has been translated into English. In May 2001 a seagoing minesweeper of the Black Sea Fleet was named in his honor.


Sea minesweeper of the Black Sea Fleet "Valentin Pikul"


  1. ^ Natalya Ivanova, "A New Mosaic out of Old Fragments: Soviet History Re-Codified in Modern Russian Prose" (Conference Papers, Stanford University, October 1998), pp. 25-26.
  2. ^ Richard Stites, Russian Popular Culture (Cambridge UP, 1992, repr. 1995), p. 151.