The name is not well known to the current generation. If earlier “Sannikov Land” was hotly debated among students (especially after the creation of the eponymous Soviet film), now the name Obrucheva known among the fans of the old (classical) science fiction.
The interesting thing is that Vladimir Obruchev did not plan to become a science fiction writer. Then this specialization in the literature was not.
Vladimir Obruchev was born in 1863, in the village Klepinino Tver province. This village was the estate of his grandfather. From an early age, he quickly learned to read, with great pleasure “swallowed” books about travel and adventure. It will take a couple of decades, and Vladimir himself will be to actively travel through the vast Russian Empire. And not only her.
Volodya’s father on duty have been on the Western borders of Russia. That turned out that his family moved with him, and little Volodya went to Brest, then in Radomsko gymnasium, and then at the Realschule of the city of Vilna (now Vilnius). At this time, little Volodya has mastered the Polish language.
In his later years Vladimir Obruchev was fond of saying that in a real school he took a firm decision to enroll in a Mining Institute in St. Petersburg. This is partly due to the fact that graduates of the said University had to travel a lot, and it attracted Vladimir. And he enrolled in the Institute.
However, at some point, Vladimir had nearly dropped out. It seemed to him that there are too many unnecessary subjects. In addition, the geological Committee of the Russian Empire, then (in 1880-ies) were in the state only seven (!) vacancies of geologists. And what was the chance that the Hoop will be one of seven lucky? In probability theory, of course, small.
However, the situation has improved. The fact that in the last courses of the Institute of Geology students are taught a keen researcher — Ivan Vasilievich Mushketov. He often pulled students from the boring classroom where eagerly talked about all sorts of rocks, and sometimes even a simple (at first glance) the stones. A total of forty students, two — Obruchev and Bogdanovich decided to become geologists.
Muskets appreciated the choice of the pupils, backed up by the recent successes in study. He really went to bat for them, and they won seats on the newly built TRANS-Caspian railway. Obruchev and Bogdanovich were to conduct geological investigations at the site of the upcoming construction. Which they did, and quite well.
After the Chinese expedition in the early twentieth century, held extensive exploration of Siberia and parts of Transbaikalia. Thanks Obruchev was able to study in detail a number of the mountain ranges of Altai, and also to discover new deposits of oil and gold. During these years Vladimir Afanasyevich actively interested in the issues of permafrost. That is, at this time he is not even thinking about the literature, began to collect data for their future’s most famous novels, “Sannikov Land” and “Plutonium”.
In 1912 V. Obrucheva by order of the Minister sacked. At this time Vladimir Afanasyevich and creates his first fiction novel “Plutonium”, which withstood more than one edition. For the first time this book was published in 1924 under Soviet rule.
She returned to full Obruchev’s scientific activities. It is included in the Supreme Council of National Economy of the Soviet Union, contributes to the organization of the geological faculty at the Simferopol University, directs the Geological Institute of the, and quite new permafrost Institute. And, of course, continues to publish scientific work, combining this with the lectures.
The second fiction novel “Sannikov Land” — published in 1926. Interestingly, when subsequent editions of “Sannikov Land” and “Plutonium” Obruchev had to write to them a lengthy Preface, which stated that his books are fiction, albeit with an abundance of many scientific facts. The fact is, it turned out that readers have seriously decided that all described in the books of academician is the truth!
In addition to the above mentioned art books, Vladimir Obruchev authored books: “notes of a treasure hunter”, “Thermal mine”, “Coral island”. However, they are known not so widely, as his famous “Plutonium” and “Sannikov Land“, which is now someone seem naive, old-fashioned, too schematic.
Maybe it’s partly true. However, the characters of works of art Obrucheva endowed with many good human qualities. That’s why his book is worth reading. At least once in life.