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Alfred University Alumnus Robert Littell ’56 publishes 21st novel


“Romeo and Juliet” reimagined in 1991 Soviet Union

From Alfred University,

The 21st novel by an Alfred University alumnus, Robert Littell ‘56, has been released by Blackstone Publishing and is now available on Amazon and in bookstores across the country.

“A Plague on Both Your Houses” is the author’s fictional retelling of Shakespeare’s classic tragedy of two young lovers from feuding families, “Romeo and Juliet.”  The year is 1991. As the Soviet Union emerges from communist rule to nascent democracy, rival clans battle for power in Moscow, the capital.

Warring gangs clash in the streets and the future of the new Russia is anything but assured. Caught up in the mayhem, Yulia, only daughter of a mafia godfather, and Roman, only son of the godfather’s sworn enemy, navigate the minefield of their love for one another as they attempt to escape an uncertain destiny.

A former naval officer and later a Newsweek editor specializing in the Soviet Union, Littell is also the author of “The Revolutionist” and “Mother Russia.” His novel “The Amateur” was made into a feature film and his New York Times bestselling novel “The Company” was adapted as a television miniseries. He is the winner of Britain’s prestigious Gold Dagger award and The Los Angeles Times’s Book Prize. The Washington Post has called him “one of the most talented, most original voices in American fiction today.” 

Littell, 89, has lived in France for the past 50 years. With his wife, Victoria, he maintains residences in Paris and the province of Normandy and has a winter retreat on the Moroccan coast. He graduated from Alfred in 1956 with a bachelor’s degree in English literature.

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