Author Lisa Dickey Reads and Discusses her Acclaimed New Non-Fiction Bears in the Streets: Three Journeys Across A Changing Russia

Thursday, April 20th at 7:00 p.m.

Over the course of 20 years, in between stints as a ghostwriter for NY Times bestsellers and an accomplished career in journalism, author Lisa Dickey traveled across Russia, meeting and reconnecting with a spectrum of people and finding out about how they view their lives. The result is Bears in the Streets: Three Journeys Across A Changing Russia, praised by everyone from Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright to Bustle magazine. Hailed for her ace reporter’s eye and ear, engrossing style and humane touch, Lisa Dickey tells us what so many Russians mean when they refer to “bears in the streets.” As an intriguing bonus, the wonderful singer-songwriter Jill Sobule co-wrote a song with Lisa about that very question and Jill will be there to sing it for us! This promises to be a truly timely & riveting talk, performance, q&a, reading and signing.

Bears in the Streets CoverRussia is one of the most fascinating, dynamic and important countries on earth, but we know surprisingly little about the people who live there. Bears in the Streets: Three Journeys Across A Changing Russia offers an unprecedented on-the-ground view of Russia today and its post-Soviet evolution. Dickey traveled across Russia three times in the past 20 years in (1995, 2005 and 2015), and each time she went back, she interviewed the same people in 11 different cities to find out how everyday life there has changed.

From the caretakers of a lighthouse in Vladivostok, to the Jewish community of Birobidzhan, to a farmer in Buryatia, to a group of gay friends in Novosibirsk, to a wealthy family in Chelyabinsk, to a rap star in Moscow, Dickey charts changes in people’s attitudes, beliefs, and opinions over time. Bears in the Streets paints a poignant, nuanced portrait of post-Soviet Russia. Filled with colorful stories, unexpected twists and keen insights,  the narrative contains photographs spanning all 20 years, illustrating not only how Russian cities have changed, but how the people Dickey interviewed have personally changed over time.

Here is a short, fascinating video trailer about her travels.

  • A Bustle Best Nonfiction Book for January
  • A Men’s Journal Best Book for January

Bears in the Streets is impossible to put down. Fueled by a deep curiosity and with the skilled eye of a world class journalist, Dickey peels back superficial stereotypes and shares her discoveries and her surprises.” ― Rick Smolan, New York Times bestselling author and creator of the “Day in the Life” book series

“Lisa Dickey has chosen an inspired way to tell a most fascinating story about the evolution of modern Russia. Bears in the Streets is brilliant, real and readable.” ―Former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright

“Delightful…Dickey’s travelogue is truly heartwarming, drawing strength from the honesty and openness of the people she visits and revisits and opening windows on the opinions of the Russian people on nearly everything, from homosexuality to Putin. Fascinating and a balm to readers enduring the current xenophobic plague.” ―Booklist


Lisa Dickey author photo_credit Matt Kay


Lisa Dickey is an author and ghostwriter who has helped write seventeen published nonfiction books, including eight New York Times bestsellers. Dickey began her career in St. Petersburg, Russia, writing articles for The Moscow Times and USA Today. She is an accomplished storyteller, appearing at live events such as the Moth Grand Slam. She lives in Los Angeles.

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