Natalia Medvedeva. Ma, I love a swindler

Author: Natalia Medvedeva
Title: Ma, I love a swindler

Year: 2004

The desperate autobiographical novel about love between a promiscuous fourteen-year-old Juliet and a black-marketeer Romeo is set in Soviet Leningrad during the seventies. This extraordinary love-affair starts with gonorrhea, which is itself turned into a poetic fact, and continues with rebellion against social morals, hypocrisy and narrow-mindedness. Full of bitter irony aimed at the peculiar details of the Soviet lifestyle, the novel oozes with 1970s Russian atmosphere. Full of the wild passion inherent to Natalia Medvedeva, provocative writer and singer who was once married to the notorious Eduard Limonov, the novel amazes the reader with its fusion of beauty and repulsiveness, romance and debauchery, innocence and experience.
‘At the age of fourteen I have to “master a profession” for “the future”, for “tranquil old age”, for “a pension”! They say I will enjoy myself at fifty,’ says Natalia, the main character of the novel, in a fit of rage. Natalia Medvedeva died at the age of forty four…
3,000 copies were sold in the first month upon publication.
Natalia Medvedeva was born in 1958 in Leningrad. In 1975 she immigrated to the USA where she scored a success as a model and sang Russian romances in the restaurants of Los Angeles. In 1982 she moved into Paris where she performed as a singer and wrote articles for the French magazines “Figaro Madame” and “Idiot International, while working on her novels. Natalia came back to Russia in 1994, where she made career as a singer and recorded several albums. In February of 2003 the admirers of Natalia Medvedeva’s musical and literary talent were struck by her untimely death from pleuropneumonia.

“All the “radical” young prose writers are just mama’s boys as compared with this greedy, impudent, beautiful girl, mixing up with guys, having sex in garrets, who was destined to a trade school but finally got LA and Paris”.