Community / Stout prepares for local launch of acclaimed Ukraine book

  • Night Train to Odesa also serialised for ‘Book of the Week’ on BBC4
  • Book launch will be followed by fundraising event at Mareel

Jen Stout. Photo: Polygon

LOCAL author, journalist and war correspondent Jen Stout will read from her recently published and highly acclaimed book Night Train to Odesa at an event in the Shetland Museum and Archives in June.

Ahead of the long awaited ‘local launch’ on 18 June, audiences across the UK will be able to listen to a serialised version of her reporting from war-torn Ukraine on BBC4’s Book of the Week programme starting on Monday 3 June.

Stout, who has been busy attending book festivals up and down the country since her personal account of reporting the human cost of Russia’s war was published in early May, said she was “chuffed” about the interest in her work.

“I still can’t quite believe that my book will be going out to such a huge audience, and I am obviously chuffed,” she said.

“Radio is such a powerful medium – and so personal, like you are speaking to folk in their cars and kitchens – so it’s a dream to do this.


“I have already recorded the episodes, so just waiting impatiently for the 3rd of June.”

Then, on 18 June, Stout will join Mary Blance in the museum’s auditorium for an evening of conversation and questions.  This hour-long event kicks off at 6pm – tickets are £4 and can be bought here  – and will be followed by a Ukraine fundraising event in Mareel from 7.30 to 9pm where local band Odesa will provide the music.

The event will be held in support of Kharpp, a small UK charity which does reconstruction work in the Kharkiv region. They work with local people to fix windows and walls and provide generators and other direct aid.

Co-founder Ada Wordsworth is in Kharkiv at the moment and will record a short video message for the Mareel event.

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Funds raised will also go to the PEN Ukraine team. During her time in Ukraine, Stout has been travelling with a lot in their ‘philosopher’s bus’ run by husband and wife journalists and academics Volodymyr Yermolenko and Tetyana Ogarkova.

They frequently travel to frontline areas, taking books and aid to residents, and delivering second-hand jeeps to the army. They raise money for this via PayPal – ukraine.resisting@gmail.com

Stout was a guest on Volodymyr’s podcast Explaining Ukraine (English) recently. It can be listened to here.

The Ukraine fundraising event is supported by Shetland News.  



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