Vasily Belov


MOSCOW (AP) - Vasily Belov, a writer who paid homage to old rural Russia in his books, has died. He was 80.

Belov's death late Tuesday was announced by the government of Vologda, the region where he lived in northwestern Russia. The government statement issued Wednesday did not name the cause.

Belov, born into a peasant family, had to start working while he was at school to help his family after his father was killed during World War II.

He published his first book of poetry in 1961, and became widely known after he published the novel "Business as Usual" in 1966. The novel tells a story of a farmer who leaves his village, then rushes back out of nostalgia only to find his wife dead - a pessimistic ending that contrasted sharply with the prevailing "socialist realism" style.

Belov's books sold millions of copies and he received top Soviet awards. He was one of the most visible representatives of the so-called "village prose" literary m ovement, which praised the old Russian customs and opposed urbanization.

Among Belov's most famous works were the "Carpenter Tales" book of short stories, the "Lad" ("Harmony") collection of essays and the novels "Everything Is Ahead," ''Year of a Major Breakdown" and "Sixth Hour."

President Vladimir Putin and other officials offered condolences to Belov's family. "His books are making us kinder and better," Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said in his statement.

Belov will be buried Friday in his home village, Timonikha.

Copyright © 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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Please accept my sincere condolences and sincere prayers that go out to the surviving family and friends. May the God of comfort continue to bless you and yours especially after such an untimely loss of a very precious life please accept my deepest sympathies. (2 Cor. 1:2, 3).

In this time of a loss of someone special in our lives be comforted to know God cares and will help us endure through his love with comfort and peace. We miss this talented person whom everyone no doubt respected and admired.

I am so sorry to hear about your loss. May John 11:23-25 bring you much comfort.

I am so sorry to hear about your loss. May John 11:23-25 bring youuch comfort.

My condolences to Vasily's family and friends. Please have comfort in prayer at this sorrowful time. Psalms 65:2

Please accept my condolences and may the peace of God that excels all thought comfort the family members of Vasily Belov during this time of sorrow.

"Draw close to God, and he will draw close to YOU." James 4:8

With Deepest Sympathy
Temple Hills Maryland

God bless ~