Bookshelf

In writing a travel memoir on Bulgaria, I have spent many hours in the DC public library, university libraries, and the Library of Congress. Take a look at some of the titles on my Bulgarian bookshelf.

I, on the other hand, am interested in a literary agent that would take a look at my manuscript. If you can refer me to such a literary agent or publisher, please let me know!

Travels in Bulgaria

Neither Here Nor There: Travels in Europe by Bill Bryson
Bryson devotes chapter 21 to Sofia and is effusive about the beauty of Bulgarian women.

Bulgaria in Images from Felix Kanitz by Hristo Markov
Hungarian naturalist, geographer, ethnographer, archaeologist and well-seasoned traveler Felix Kanitz decided to explore the Balkans. Kanitz not only extensively studied Bulgaria past and in his lifetime, but also drew skilled illustrations of what he saw.

To Chicago and Back by Aleko Konstantinov
The classic book that inspired many Bulgarians not only to travel internationally, but to travel and even emigrate to Chicago specifically.

Bulgaria by Joseph Petkov
Hired by the General Board of the Bulgarian State Railways and Ports in 1933, Petkov wrote a charming little guidebook capturing Bulgaria’s pre-WWII charm.

Fiction

The Elusive Mrs. Pollifax by Dorothy Gilman
Admittedly not one of the great detective or mystery novels, it is perhaps the only one where Bulgaria is at front and center.

Arms and the Man by George Bernard Shaw

Bernard Shaw was almost finished writing his play and hadn’t yet decided on a location for his war. Then he heard about a war between Serbia and Bulgaria. He “made all of the characters end in ‘off’, and the play was complete.”

General Bulgarian History

The Pen and the Sword: Studies in Bulgarian History by James Franklin Clarke and Dennis P. Hupchick
Clarke was born in Bulgaria and spent his early years there, the rare American bilingual in English and Bulgarian. He devoted his scholarly work to the country.

Foxy Ferdinand, Tsar of Bulgaria by Stephen Constant
Successfully shows how Ferdinand strove to balance Bulgaria’s interests between the opposing pressures of Russia and the Austro-Hungarian Empire while bringing the country into modernity.

Bulgaria by R.J. Crampton

A Concise History of Bulgaria by R.J. Crampton

A Short History of Modern Bulgaria by R.J. Crampton

Bulgaria: A Country Study by Glenn Curtis

A History of Bulgaria 1393-1885 by Mercia MacDermott
A no-holds-barred supporter of Bulgaria, this 1962 book is not objective, but it does cover a lot of ground.

Specific Topics

Girls’ Secondary Education in the Western World: From the 18th to the 20th Century by James C.Albisetti, Joyce Goodman, and Rebecca Rogers
Chapter 10 is devoted to Bulgaria, and Bulgaria has done itself proud when compared to others in the region.

The World’s Writing Systems by Peter T. Daniels and William Bright, eds
Paul Cubberly covers the Slavic alphabets in section 21. Scholarly and informative.

The Thracian City of Seuthopolis.

The Thracian City of Seuthopolis by Dimiter P. Dimitrov and Maria Chichikova
Seuthopolis was the capital of ancient Thracian tribal ruler Seuthes. It was thoroughly uncovered and extensively studied and photographed, with its finds carefully preserved. But it was found in 1948 only because of a nearby dam construction project and after the excavation was completed in 1954, the construction proceeded as planned. Now the “the best preserved Thracian city in modern Bulgaria” is underwater in a flooded valley.

The Diary of Georgi Dimitrov: 1933-1949 by Georgi Dimitrov and Ivo Banac
Bulgaria’s home-grown Stalin documented his musings and declarations about various party factions, Comintern directives and outcomes, counterrevolutionary activities and related arrests, and who was being purged/imprisoned/killed for what. He appears to be bizarrely naive about Stalin’s feelings for him even as he reports, “Called J.V. [Josef Vissarionovich Stalin]. Soon as he recognized my voice, he hung up!”

Dimitrov and Stalin, 1934-1943: Letters from the Soviet Archives by Joseph Stalin, Georgi Dimitrov, Alexander Dallin, and Fridrikh Igorevich Firsov
Letters of those thankfully no longer with us.

The Bulgarians in the Seventeenth Century: Slavic Orthodox Society and Culture under Ottoman Rule by Dennis Hupchick
One century of the five centuries Bulgaria was under Ottoman rule.

A Short History of the Cyrillic Alphabet by Ivan G. Iliev
Learn more about what Kiril and Methodi have wrought.

Januarius MacGahan: The Life and Campaigns of an American War Correspondent by Dale Walker
His reporting about Ottoman massacres in Bulgaria had incalculable influence on the British public, which then rejected government resistance to Russia declaring war on Turkey to free “its little Slavic brother.”

Balkan Smoke: Tobacco and the Making of Modern Bulgaria by Mary Neuburger
Ever wonder why Bulgarians smoke so much?

Bulgaria During the Holocaust

The Fragility of Goodness: Why Bulgaria’s Jews Survived the Holocaust by Tzvetan Todorov
Properly documents the broad support in the Bulgarian population to stop the deportation of its Jewish neighbors.

The Righteous: The Unsung Heroes of the Holocaust by Martin Gilbert
Chapter 10 focuses on Central Europe and the Balkans.

The Bulgarian Jews and the Final Solution, 1940-1944 by Frederick Chary
A comprehensive report of Bulgaria’s war years and an attempt to figure out why Bulgaria, alone in Europe other than Denmark, resisted the Final Solution.