10 best works of Mikhail Bulgakov

Review of the best according to the editors. About the selection criteria. The the material is subjective, is not advertising and is not serves as a guide to the purchase. Before purchase is needed consultation with a specialist.

Mikhail Bulgakov is rightly considered one of the most famous and talented Russian writers of the XX century. Almost unrecognized when life, in our time his works are considered modern literary classics. A brilliant writer was born in Kiev, in the family of a professor of theology. He received a medical education and worked as a doctor for a long time, also served at the front as military doctor. Bulgakov began his writing career in 1920s, shortly after moving to Moscow. It was published in metropolitan newspapers, then created scripts for plays, at the same time doing and writing books. However, his career was successful not for long – the writer’s work was considered inappropriate against the backdrop of universal communist ideology. Almost every work has been criticized in to the Soviet press, plays were often removed from the theater repertoire, books were forbidden to publish, sometimes it came to searches of the apartment. Desperate Bulgakov wrote a letter to the government asking allow to go abroad or allow to stage performances in Moscow Art Academic Theater. As a result, he received post of assistant director at the Moscow Art Theater. During this period, the author created several interesting works, including the comedy “Ivan Vasilievich “, which was subsequently shot the famous film Leonid Gaidai. But his main work is considered the novel “Master and Margarita, “which he wrote in the last years of his life.

Anyone interested in Russian literature should to get acquainted with at least some of Bulgakov’s creations. Below we We offer you a selection of his best books.

Overview of the best works of Mikhail Bulgakov

Nomination a place Composition rating
Overview of the famous works of Mikhail Bulgakov 10 Adventures of Chichikov 4.1
9 Crimson Island 4.2
8 Fatal eggs 4.3
7 The devil 4.4
6 dog’s heart 4.5
5 Cuff notes 4.6
4 The life of M. de Moliere 4.7
3 Theatrical novel 4.8
2 White Guard 4.9
1 Master and Margarita 5.0

Adventures of Chichikov

Rating: 4.1

Adventures of Chichikov

A small satirical novel defined by the author himself as “a poem at ten points with a prologue and epilogue.” Written in 1922 year. In the story, the revived Gogol heroes from “Dead Souls” find themselves in the post-revolutionary Moscow period of the NEP (the new economic policy). The main character is Pavel Chichikov, which despite the changing historical situation, is very quickly managed to settle in life. Through cunning and deceit enterprising Chichikov and here cranks out fraudulent fraud, gathering up significant capital. This is possible in the first due to the fact that corruption, lack of professionalism and negligence still accompanies the activities of state officials, and ordinary inhabitants are still indifferent to to others. On the pages of the story there was a place for characters from other Gogolian works. All unprincipled characters exist safely in the 20th century, as a renewed state no less mired in bureaucracy than a century ago.

Crimson Island

Rating: 4.2


The action of the story “Crimson Island” takes place on the lost in the ocean is a small island, and the author took many characters from novels by Rudyard Kipling and Jules Verne. But essentially this a peculiar sarcastic story is a look with parties to major historical events in Russia dating back to October Revolution and ending with a period of “new economic order “. Heroes of” Crimson Island “Bulgakov wrote with real political figures, so the prototype for the leader of the white Araps was Emperor Nicholas II, and in the person of a loafer Kiri-Kuki easily guessed the chairman of the Provisional Government Kerensky. On the Based on the story in 1928, the writer created the play of the same name for Chamber Theater, which was immediately warmly received by the audience, although after a short time she was banned from showing.

Fatal eggs

Rating: 4.3

Fatal eggs

A fantastic novel written in 1924. One of the main characters – scientist Vladimir Persikov, he developed the “red ray life, “which greatly accelerates the development of living things, makes they are many times larger and stronger. Professor is going to check new technology is experimental, but the head of the exponential state farm Alexander Rokk is not going to wait, he intends with the help of beam to begin production of giant chickens and has already enlisted for this Kremlin support. Only instead of a batch of Rocky eggs because mistakes of postal service workers gets eggs of crocodiles and snakes. Aggressive reptiles have grown to monstrous sizes with everyone in their path and moving towards the densely populated capital Cities. One of the main sources for the idea of ​​the book was the novel. “Food of the Gods” by the English writer Herbert Wells. Based on the plot the story “Fatal Eggs” in 1995, directed by Sergei Lomkin full-length comedy-science-fiction film.

The devil

Rating: 4.4

The Devil

Bulgakov’s book, Devil’s, typically Gogol’s “little man” faced with gaining revolutions of the bureaucratic machine of Soviet power. Becoming her victim clerk Korotkov loses his mind starting to associate officials and civil servants with devilish force. After main character’s dismissal puts him on the brink of suicide. Some time the work is not they took it to print, but in the end the publication of the story nevertheless took place – in 1924 on the pages of the almanac “Nedra”.

dog’s heart

Rating: 4.5

Dog's heart

The events of the fantastic story “Dog Heart” take place in 20s of the last century. Talented surgeon professor Preobrazhensky as part of an experiment on the study of methods rejuvenation decided to transplant a human pituitary gland a homeless dog named Ball. The donor was the one who died in a fight. drunkard and thief Klim Chugunkin. After Operation Ball to amazement professor and his assistant gradually began to turn into person. But it turned out that along with the human appearance, the dog adopted all the worst features of his donor. However, neither rudeness nor love of drink does not interfere with Polygraph Ball, as they called newly formed person adapt successfully in Moscow society, soon taking the post of chief for the capture of stray animals. The story was first published in 1968 in Germany and Great Britain, and in the writer’s homeland only 19 years later. And after 20 years based on the story of the director Vladimir Bortko made a two-part television film.

Cuff notes

Rating: 4.6


“Notes on Cuffs” is a work of the epistolary genre, a kind of diary that Bulgakov kept during his traveling around the country during the civil war. Because of total deficit, paper is sometimes not enough, and the author did some entries on the cuffs of clothes, which is the reason for the name books. It consists of two parts: the first one is pretty detailed tells about the life of a writer in the Caucasus, the second tells about first months spent in Moscow. Significant attention given to Bulgakov’s complex relationship with the current communist authorities, in particular, speak of his plans regarding emigration abroad. The narrative is real facts and events mixed with mysticism and “seasoned” with sharp Bulgakov humor. During the life of the author of “Notes on Cuffs” never published in full.

The life of M. de Moliere

Rating: 4.7

The life of M. de Moliere

A historical novel introduces the reader to the biography of the famous French playwright and actor Jean-Baptiste Moliere. The story begins with the very birth of the hero of the book. In youth Moliere at first was going to follow in the footsteps of his father the upholsterer, who prided himself on providing wallpaper for even the king himself. However, once he saw the theatrical production, he realized that he doesn’t want to connect his fate with anything but art. The work, despite its art form, has a strong base in the form of documentaries carefully studied by Bulgakov evidence. In addition, the author colorfully and vividly describes the unique atmosphere of old France. In 1933, the manuscript was handed over to the publisher, but it didn’t reach the press – editor felt that the book was written from a non-Marxist perspective and contains veiled criticism of the Stalin era. The first edition of Moliere, as its author originally called, only 30 years later it was released after writing.

Theatrical novel

Rating: 4.8

Theatrical novel

Bulgakov began to write this novel only a couple of weeks after breaking the creative union with the Moscow Art Academic the theater. It is detailed, frankly and with a considerable share of irony. the backstage theater life is highlighted. The second title of the book is “Notes of the deceased,” since the main character is suicide beginner playwright and writer named Sergey Maksudov, before his death bequeathed to the publisher to publish it a work about the theater. Parallels are easily guessed in the story. on the relationship of Bulgakov with the leadership of the Moscow Art Theater, in particular with Konstantin Stanislavsky. There is also criticism of the theory Stanislavsky, that talent is gained through training. “Theatrical novel” was written by the author without drafts and corrections, on in one breath.

White Guard

Rating: 4.9

White Guard

The novel takes place during the Civil War, in the center plot – a noble family living in Kiev, as well as their relatives and friends. Trying to survive in conditions of social cataclysm, they observe the death of the world of the Russian intelligentsia and the established cultural values. The book is partly autobiographical, almost all characters are copied from specific people from the life of the author himself, more Moreover, the main events take place in the very house where once the Bulgakov family lived. In Russia, the White Guard was published only partially in 1925, she completely left in France, after a couple of years. Based on the plot of the book, Bulgakov later created the play “Turbine Days”. In 2012, a mini-series was released based on the novel, filmed by director Sergei Snezhkin.

Master and Margarita

Rating: 5.0

Master and Margarita

The novel “The Master and Margarita” is a real gem not only Russian, but also world literature, he is rightfully among the best works of the XX century. In the book, the author, without sacrificing art value of the plot, managed to touch on a number of important philosophical topics. Good and evil, love, faith, biblical mythology, the search for meaning among the difficulties of everyday life – all this found a place on pages of the main masterpiece of Bulgakov. The writer introduced an alternative and very original vision of the Devil and Christ, making them more multifaceted characters than traditionally accepted consider. In the images of the Master and Margarita, a connection with himself is traced Mikhail Bulgakov and his faithful wife Elena. To create the novel took 12 years, and even being seriously ill, the author continued to work until the last day of his life. He had time finish only draft manuscripts after the death of a Russian genius The spouse was engaged in editing and attempts to publish the work. But all her efforts did not help break through Soviet censorship time, the first “Master and Margarita” published in full only in 1973. The book was twice filmed: by the director Yuri Kara (1994) and Vladimir Bortko (2005).

Attention! This rating is subjective, not advertising and does not serve as a guide to the purchase. Before the purchase consultation with a specialist is necessary.

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