Alla Melentieva. The dostoevsky girls

Author: Alla Melentieva
Title: The dostoevsky girls
Year: 2005

An intelligent detective story reminiscent of the early novels by Dostoevsky.
To be able pay the debts and help her grandma Isabella has to change her employment as a teacher with a secondary school for a considerably better paid job of a companion for the mother of the ‘nouveau riche’ – a powerful Polivanov, the newly-born ‘king’ of the real estate in Saint-Petersburg. Humiliated and insulted by the members of the Polivanovs who treat her as if her life belonged to them Isabella has to struggle for her pride and self-esteem in the suffocating interiors of a huge luxurious apartment. Her state moves on to the almost unbearable condition, when she has to take on a new responsibility – this time for the lives of Natasha, a young provincial girl left alone in the big city by a treacherous seducer and her newly born baby, whose mansion neighboring the Polivanov’s suite is chosen as a shelter by the killer hired by the competitors of Polivanov…
“The Dostoevsky Girls” is a gripping detective story set in the modern Saint-Petersburg where the drastic contrast between the lives of the rich and the poor create a fertile field for the Dostoevsky followers: Alla Melentieva brings together social concerns and an intriguing detective plot in what turns out to be an original variation on the detective fiction motives of early Dostoevsky.