Sergei Kourdakov, a former KGB agent and Soviet naval intelligence officer, defected from the USSR at the age of twenty. A year later we met at my Federal Government office in Washington DC. We were watched and followed. “Even you could be spy,” Sergei whispered. My book, A Rose for Sergei, is the true story of our time together.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Sergei Kourdakov – An Improbable Romance

Summer Special!  A Rose for Sergei (ebook) is currently on sale for $0.99 on and discounted in other participating Amazon markets.  This story chronicles my real life relationship with Sergei Kourdakov—a Soviet KGB defector who left a life he could no longer face, and gave up everything for freedom.  Take advantage of this special offer before the price goes back up.

Editorial Review from Owen R. O’Neill, Author of the Loralynn Kennakris Series

“Moving and trenchant, this memoir about a most unexpected encounter that led to an improbable romance at the height of the Cold War is both heartrending and heartwarming.  Told in a straightforward and unflinching style, Ms. Kidd chronicles her relationship with Soviet defector Sergei Kourdakov in prose that is immediate, unaffected, and poignant.  It is a captivating story that imagination could not invent, but two hearts did.  Highly recommended.”

Monday, May 9, 2016

Sergei Kourdakov - I Write Because . . .

Why tell a story that you kept to yourself for more than forty years?  This is the question I’m still asked after people find out about my book, A Rose for Sergei.  Why now?  My first response is easy.  After Sergei Kourdakov’s death my boss suggested we not discuss Sergei in public.  I agreed it was the best thing to do.  And so I stopped talking about Sergei, even though I had unanswered questions about what happened to him.  It was 1973 and the Cold War was alive and well.

My memories of Sergei were held close.  He was an important part of my life when we were both twenty-one, and he had a profound effect on my life.  I learned life lessons at a very young age.  I grew up faster than anyone that young ever needed to.  Knowing Sergei changed me, I have no doubt about that.  And still I didn’t talk about him.

My second response to the question, “Why write now?” is more heartfelt.  Disparaging remarks about Sergei Kourdakov on social media, and in the documentary film Forgive Me, Sergei immediately changed my way of thinking.  Some of these commentaries regarding Sergei’s life aren’t right, I kept telling myself.  I heard Sergei’s story first hand, I knew him.  I also knew his background had been thoroughly “checked out” by a federal government agency.  I had to say something.  I sat at my computer, took a deep breath…I have to do this, and started writing my story.

* * *
Day 1 of writing . . .

Fall 1972

"Excuse me; I would like to go to the men’s…how do you say in America…restroom?” Sergei asked in his broken English.  “Is that the right way to say that?”

“Yes, that is the right way; you could also say men’s room.  And it’s okay to excuse yourself,” I said.  “It isn’t rude.  I’ll be fine sitting alone a few minutes at the table until you return,” I assured him as I smiled and tried to refrain from laughing.  He was so incredibly polite.  The way he spoke, his broken English combined with his Russian accent, could be very amusing at times.

We were having dinner at the JW Steakhouse at the Key Bridge Marriott in Arlington, Virginia.  My date was Sergei Kourdakov.  He was twenty-one years old, and he had defected from the Soviet Union over a year ago.  He had been a member of the KGB, the Commissariat for State Security or secret police, and a Soviet naval intelligence officer—intimidating credentials for sure.  He was also very good looking, which I found even more intimidating.
—K. Kidd, from Chapter 1, A Rose for Sergei

* * * 
I write because . . . 
I don’t want Sergei’s story to be forgotten.