Based on a true story, The Less You Know the Sounder You Sleep is a tale of survival and self-determination, innocence and lies. In this video, Juliet Butler introduces her novel and the true story that inspired it.
Dasha cannot imagine life without her sister. Masha is feisty and fearless. Dasha is gentle, quiet and fears everything; from the Soviet scientists who study them, to the other ‘defective’ children who bully them and the ‘healthies’ from whom they must be locked away.
For the twins have been born conjoined in a society where flaws must be hidden from sight and where their inseparability is the most terrible flaw of all.
Through the seismic shifts of Stalin’s communism to the beginnings of Putin’s democracy, Dasha and her irrepressible sister strive to be more than just ‘the together twins’, finding hope – and love – in the unlikeliest of places.
But will their quest for shared happiness always be threatened by the differences that divide them? And can a life lived in a sister’s shadow only ever be half a life?
Juliet Butler has worked in Russia and the UK as a journalist and translator. She knew the twins, Masha and Dasha, over a period of some fifteen years, during which time she interviewed and recorded them on the many occasions she visited them. She collaborated with them on their autobiography, published in German in 2000.
The Less You Know the Sounder You Sleep by Juliet Butler is out on 10th August. Buy your copy here.
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