Books: Dear America

ALEXANDER DOLGUN'S STORY: AN AMERICAN IN THE GULAG by ALEXANDER DOLGUN with PATRICK WATSON 370 pages. Knopf. $10.

A little after 1 o'clock on Dec. 13, 1948, a 22-year-old American file clerk from the U.S. embassy in Moscow named Alexander Dolgun strolled down Gorky Street on his way to lunch. Suddenly a tall, good-looking stranger hailed him like a long-lost friend. Alex's purported kiryukha (old buddy) was a major in the MGB, the Ministry of State Security, who promptly took him to jail. What began as a delayed luncheon lasted seven years and eight...

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