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The King of Vodka : The Story of Pyotr Smirnov and the Upheaval of an Empire - Linda Himelstein

The King of Vodka

The Story of Pyotr Smirnov and the Upheaval of an Empire

By: Linda Himelstein

eBook | 21 November 2023

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"The story of the Smirnov family is an operatic tour-de-force, and Linda Himelstein tells it with grace and passion." —Tilar J. Mazzeo, author of The Widow Clicquot

From Vanderbilt and Rockefeller to Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, America's captains of industry are paragons of entrepreneurial success, and books about business history, from The First Tycoon to The Big Short, show exemplars of capitalistic cunning and tenacity. But just as American cocktail connoisseurs can mistake Absolut, Skyy, Grey Goose, or Ketel One for the quintessential clear spirit, so too has America's vision of business history remained naïve to a truth long recognized in Eastern Europe: since the time of Tsar Nicholas, both vodka and commercial success have been synonymous in Russia with one name—Smirnoff.

Linda Himelstein's critically acclaimed biography of Russian vodka scion Pyotr Smirnov—a finalist for the James Beard Award, winner of the IACP and Saroyan Awards, and a BusinessWeek Best Business Book of 2009—is the sweeping story of entrepreneurship, empire, and epicurean triumph unlike anything the world has ever seen before.

"Himelstein makes Russian history and even current politics come alive." —USA Today

"Himelstein brings thorough research and strong writing to bear on a fascinating subject." —BusinessWeek

"An impressive feat of research, told swiftly and enthusiastically." —San Francisco Chronicle

"An astonishing tale." —Miami Herald

Industry Reviews
One of "the year's best books."
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