From Stephen Kotkin’s Stalin, vol. 1: Paradoxes of Power, 1878-1929:
Over the more than four centuries from the time of Ivan the Terrible, Russia expanded an average of fifty square miles per day.
Russian Eurasia—104 nationalities speaking 146 languages, as enumerated in the 1897 census—was the world’s most spectacular kaleidoscope. . . .
The book overall is excellent, but it reads as more a history of the Russian revolution in general and less as a biography of Stalin in specific.
For example, Stalin is mentioned about as much as other prominent figures from the era. It would be reasonable to assume a biography, instead of a general history, would contain a higher proportion of Stalin mentions.
- Stalin: 80 mentions
- Lenin: 82 mentions
- Trotsky: 80 mentions
- Nicholas: 87 mentions
(These numbers are incomplete, because revolutionaries were known by these names later in life. Still, the numbers are incomplete in the same way. This likely still makes them useful for comparative purposes.)