One of the most famous Soviet novels about the civil war was Kak zakalialas’ stal (How the steel was tempered) by Nikolai Ostrovskii. Based partially on Ostrovskii’s own life, the book describes the experiences of a young fighter on the Bolshevik side. Ostrovskii died at the age of 32 in 1936, but his works remain in print to this day. How the steel was tempered was published first serially in 1932 to 1934, with a rather different text to the one that became standard in full-volume publication. The copy whose front cover we see here came out in 1936 and is described as an eight edition, with a note on the title page to state that the book contains the full text of the original manuscript edition. This edition was illustrated by Boris Ioganson, a major Socialist Realist artist, known for works such as Dopros kommunistov (Interrogation of the Communists).
Kak zakalialas’ stal / Nikolai Ostrovskii (1936) 757:26.d.90.61