Skip to Main Content (Press Enter)
The Eitingons by Mary-Kay Wilmers
Add The Eitingons to bookshelf
Add to Bookshelf

The Eitingons

Best Seller
The Eitingons by Mary-Kay Wilmers
Paperback $24.95
May 02, 2012 | ISBN 9781844679003

Buy from Other Retailers:

See All Formats (1) +
  • May 02, 2012 | ISBN 9781844679003

    Buy from Other Retailers:

  • May 02, 2012 | ISBN 9781844679119

    Buy from Other Retailers:

Product Details


“Unlike the hordes of amateur historians who have mobbed the world’s libraries over the past decade on the theory that reconstructing lineage equates to personal discovery, Wilmers is up to something that commands general attention.”
—Christopher Glazek, New Yorker

“Wilmers’ adventures in digging through [the Eitingons’] lost world makes Mary-Kay one of the book’s most intriguing characters.”

“Like characters in some Russian Jewish Stalinist Freudian capitalist 20th-century fairy tale, the Eitingons are larger than life, their fates bitter and all too human.”
New York Times

“A superbly written book, The Eitingons is much more than a family history, for the author has a deep knowledge of the cultural and political context, whether of twentieth-century America or the Soviet Union, in which they lived. It stands as an intimate portrait of a world that seems far removed from our own.”
The Observer

The Eitingons is a riveting history of the twentieth century. It deals with war, displacement, murder, espionage, the Jewish diaspora and psychoanalysis. It explains Trotsky’s assassination, the growth of Freud’s teachings, the importance of the fur trade, the uses of money and the lure of the past. There is a lightness and a truthfulness in the narrative that makes you turn every page with pure fascination.”
—Colm Tóibín

“Wilmers pieces together what she can of the shadowy life of Leonid Eitingon, a high-level KGB killer … and looks for clues that her grandfather’s cousin Max, a protégé of Freud in Berlin, and Motty, a New York fur trader, were also working for Stalin. What emerges is a fascinating story of family secrets and silences.”
New Statesman

“Well researched, bold, and revealing, Wilmers’s book transforms a series of dark family secrets into an illuminating experience for anybody brave enough to delve into the enigma of family history.”
Publishers Weekly

“Compelling … [Wilmers] has produced a deeply-researched family chronicle, which bears only a trace resemblance to the memoirs that dominate the book industry.”
Barnes and Noble Review

Looking for More Great Reads?
21 Books You’ve Been Meaning to Read
Get the latest updates about Mary-Kay Wilmers
And go from well-read to best read with book recs, deals and more in your inbox every week.
And go from well-read to best read with book recs, deals and more in your inbox every week.
By clicking SIGN UP, I acknowledge that I have read and agree to Penguin Random House’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use and understand that Penguin Random House collects certain categories of personal information for the purposes listed in that policy, discloses, sells, or shares certain personal information and retains personal information in accordance with the policy. You can opt-out of the sale or sharing of personal information anytime.
Something awesome is on its way.
Back to Top