Sonja Franeta's My Pink Road to Russia is a beguiling and heartfelt book fascinating pastiche of memoir, poetry, history and cultural studies that opens a window onto the once-hidden world of Russia's queer community. What makes Franeta's work so valuable and haunting is not only her observant and touching portraits of the people she meets--Siberian lesbians, transsexual train conductors, gay men who survived the gulag, and a host of others--but also the reader's awareness that the remarkable flowering of post-Soviet LGBT life and culture, portrayed so eloquently by Franeta in these pages, appears to be disappearing quickly in the current Putin era.
David Tuller, author of Cracks in the Iron Closet
What an inspiration when the American activists came to Russia in 1991! After Sonja Franeta entered the Russian LGBT community, she traveled to Siberia and Moscow, Saint Petersburg and Kaliningrad, capturing the stories and her own impressions of our queer culture. In interviews collected by Sonja for her previous book Pink Flamingos we heard the voices of real people. This voice of honesty rings through Sonja's present book of stories. It is particularly valuable in Russia at this time, when we have been forbidden to talk about LGBT issues.
Olga Gert, editor of Moscow feminist journal Ostrov (Island)
Sonja Franeta’s latest book, Pink Road to Russia: Tales of Amazons, Peasants, and Queers, takes readers on a journey of awakening love from the Bronx to Moscow, through Croatia, South Africa, San Francisco, to Siberia and many other lands in between. True to her teaching profession, Franeta reveals in richly detailed stories how war, family violence, politics and borders are no match for same-sex desire. Allowing readers a rare and poetic glimpse into ‘70s and ‘80s U.S., and later post-Soviet, sexuality, she proves that there are no limitations when it comes to expressions of the heart.
Sharon Horne, PhD, writer/researcher of LGBTQ issues