1. First Person: An Astonishingly Frank Self-Portrait by Russia’s President Vladimir Putin By Vladimir Putin, Nataliya Gevorkyan, Natalya Timakova and Andrei Kolesnikov

One has to start with an account by the man himself. This is a candid self portrait of the man who controls Russia’s destiny told through six interviews given by Putin to a trio of handpicked Russian journalists.

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2. Putin’s Kleptocracy

By Karen Dawisha

An extensively researched account of Putin’s early criminality and the descent of the Russian government into an engine of organised crime. Russian scholar Dawisha has painstakingly pieced together evidence to show the billions looted by Putin’s cabal and his big plans for Greater Russia

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3. From Russia with Blood: The Kremlin’s Ruthless Assassination Program and Vladimir Putin’s Secret War on the West

By Heidi Blake

The untold story of how Russia refined the art and science of targeted assassination abroad -- while Western spies watched in horror as their governments failed to guard against the threat.

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4Putin’s Playbook: Russia’s Secret Plan to Defeat America

By Rebekah Koffler

How Vladimir Putin is orchestrating a wide-ranging, multifaceted campaign to retake his country’s role as a superpower. Koffler’s analysis is enriched by her deeply personal account of her life in the Soviet Union.

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5. The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin

By Masha Gessen

An account of Putin’s journey and his rise to power. Masha Gessen’s fearless story charts Putin’s rise from the boy who had scrapped his way through post-war Leningrad schoolyards, to the ‘faceless’ man who manoeuvred his way into absolute - and absolutely corrupt - power.

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