|“||It was like a birth. Moscow was like a woman who had already died, but the children in her petrifying womb were still alive. And they wanted to be born, and they were crying there inside. But Moscow didn't let anyone else out. She pressed her concrete cunt shut and squeezed all her children to death, and after their torment they fell silent, and were never born.||„|
— Dmitry Glukhovsky
Metro 2035 (Russian: Метро 2035) is the sequel to Metro 2033; set after Metro 2034, it is the official continuation of Artyom's story in the fictional universe of Dmitry Glukhovsky's Metro franchise. The novel was translated to Polish by Paweł Podmiotko, whilst József Goretity worked on the Hungarian translation; an English version came out in early December of 2016.
Metro 2035 is the sequel to both Metro 2033 and Metro 2034, whilst having its own unique tone and atmosphere. It has more sexual themes than Glukhovsky's previous works, but is not quite as violent as some of the Universe of Metro 2033 books. It features characters returning from previous novels, such as Sukhoi plus others from Metro 2034, as well as new personas like Ilja Stiepanovich Shkurkin. Its Artyom is also a much more mature person than he was in the first part of the trilogy.
Its story begins in a quite different metro to that of 2033 and 2034, but in the end the world of post-apocalyptic Moscow is left turned almost completely on its head.
By 2035, the strange world of Glukhovsky's post-apocalyptic Moscow Metro has changed considerably. The Fourth Reich has seen a number of reforms to give it a more welcoming image both for newcomers and its longtime citizens (with an even darker underbelly of horrifyingly efficient secrets than before), the Red Line is struck by an epidemic that renders their mushrooms inedible and leads them to experience what seems to be their largest famine yet, while the Rangers of the Order appear to have become suspiciously close with Hanza after having suffered heavy losses at an important battle for control of a bunker.
Artyom, after having willingly left the Order and married Anna in spite of Miller's disapproval, is living a quiet life with his wife on VDNKh. However, our battle-hardened young protagonist is not keen on spending the rest of his days in the darkness of the tunnels. He is still convinced: on that fateful day at the Ostankino Tower, just before he and his fellow Rangers rained fire on the Dark Ones, he heard a transmission from outside of Moscow. Now Artyom wanders out onto the surface, climbs the nearby tallest building and tries to make radio contact with the outside world several times a week.
Previously hailed a hero for destroying what he has realised to have been humanity's last light of hope, Artyom is now ostracised by his brethren and viewed as a madman for believing that people have endured World War III in other parts of the country and perhaps outside of its borders too. By travelling on the surface of the inhospitable planet almost everyday, he exposes himself to unsafe amounts of radiation. His relationship with Anna, who wants nothing more than to once more lead a normal life with her husband and give birth to a healthy child, is completely falling apart.
Yet our protagonist stubbornly refuses to let go of his dream and continues to search for answers. His commitment is rewarded by the appearance of a certain old man on his home station, as together they are soon entangled in matters beyond their understanding. Homer wants to interview Artyom for a book. Artyom isn't interested, until Homer mentions he spoke to a radio operator from Teatralnaya station named Umbach, who claims to have been in contact with survivors from Polar Dawns in northern Russia. Artyom agrees to tell Homer his story about the Dark Ones if they go speak to Umbach.
The two make their way to Tsvetnoy Bulvar station, where Artyom gets blackout drunk and wakes up later to find his Ranger tattoo has been burned off. To get to Teatralnaya, Homer and Artyom decide to go through the Reich stations. There, Artyom is forced by a Nazi officer named Dietmar to help them place explosives in nearby Theatre station in preparation of a Reich attack, or else Dietmar will kill Homer. Artyom succeeds, and while in Theatre learns that Umbach has been captured by the Reds and taken to Lubyanka under suspicion of being a saboteur.
Artyom manages to get into Lubyanka, only for a Red officer named Svinolup to shoot Umbach before Artyom can talk to him. Just then, the bomb Artyom placed explodes and the Nazis begin their attack on the Theatre. In the confusion, Artyom manages to escape to the surface from Lubyanka but is forced outside without a gas mask or any protective suit. From there he makes his way to Polis and meets with Miller, who reveals he's sending a missive to the Führer to stop the new conflict between the Reds and Reich. Miller then claims that Artyom's exposure to the Dark Ones drove him insane. He also asks that Artyom leave Anna, for her own good. Artyom agrees on the condition he be allowed to deliver Miller's message to the Führer.
Artyom and a group of three other Rangers arrive at the Reich station of Darwin (Tverskaya), but the guards refuse to let them in. Artyom tells them to get Dietmar, who lets him into the station. Dietmar leads him to Schiller (Pushkinskaya) station, where hundreds of prisoners are forced into slave labour for the Reich building more "living space". Dietmar takes Miller's missive from Artyom and throws him into the station as a slave.
Artyom finds Homer also enslaved in Schiller. Several days later, starved and exhausted, Artyom remembers a bit of what happened to him when he got blackout drunk in Tsvetnoy Bulvar. He remembers Sasha, the girl Homer has mentioned before, and that she was at Tsvetnoy Bulvar. Homer is distressed to learn she's working as a prostitute there. Shortly after the Nazis come to take Homer away, wanting him to write a propaganda book about the Reich for the Führer. Homer agrees, telling Artyom he'll find a way to get him out.
Several days later, Nazi soldiers enter Schiller station in a panic: their war with the Reds is going poorly, and Red Line forces are advancing on Schiller from Lubyanka station. They have orders to enter the tunnel connecting the two stations and detonate explosives to block it off. Fearing that the Reds will attack beforehand, the Nazis herd all the prisoners into the tunnel to use as cannon fodder. After the explosives detonate, the surviving Reich prisoners are left to fight the Reds in a pitch-black tunnel with melee weapons such as pickaxes and hammers. Artyom's knee is wounded and he falls to the floor. Once the battle is over, he discovers they hadn't been fighting Red Line soldiers, but other prisoners the Reds had sent into the tunnel ahead of their main force. One of them, delirious from pain, says she was in a cell with Igor Zuev, who claimed to have met survivors from outside of Moscow. She also claims the Reds are building a base up on the surface, in Balashikha, a suburb of Moscow. Artyom finds a way up the surface and heads to Tsvetnoy Bulvar.
Artyom finds Sasha and spends an unspecified amount of time recuperating with her, where Artyom falls in love with her. They mostly reminisce about Hunter and have sexual intercourse, though Artyom was greatly weakened by his exposure to radiation. Eventually he feels strong enough to go back to the surface (this time with a gas mask and protective suit) with a Stalker Sasha knows, named Savelij, and another survivor of Schiller who escaped with Artyom named Lyokha.
Savelij has a working car on the surface and drives them to Balashikha. There they find multiple wind turbines and a mass grave of Red Line workers. Nearby is a building surrounded by what appears to be a dozen radio towers. Artyom and his companions kill several unidentified soldiers guarding the building. Artyom tries to get a signal, but can only get static. In frustration, he smashes a console, and suddenly multiple signals come through: Paris, Berlin, Vladivostok, and more. The towers at the complex were in fact radio jammers.
Artyom wants to stay and try to communicate with other survivors, but Savelij chooses to flee before more of the unidentified soldiers arrive. Lyokha agrees to stay and help. Savelij leaves, but shortly after three men arrive at the building claiming to have come from Murom, 300 kilometers east of Moscow, led by a man named Arseniy. They agree to help defend the complex too. Just as multiple armoured vehicles are spotted heading towards them from the direction of Moscow, Savelij comes back to help Artyom. They plan to use an old excavator to knock down the jamming towers.
The armoured vehicles arrive and dozens of soldiers in grey uniforms exit and open fire on the complex. Savelij, in the excavator, knocks down a jamming tower and while moving to a second, Artyom gets a radio message from Letyaga, a Ranger from the Order, one of Artyom's best friends. He tells Artyom to stop knocking down the jamming towers or he won't be able to stop the grey-uniformed men from attacking. The attack ceases and Letyaga enters the complex to talk. As soon as Artyom is distracted, Letyaga shoots the three men from Murom, claiming they're NATO spies, that World War III is still ongoing, and that the jamming towers were designed to keep Moscow hidden from the West.
Letyaga brings Artyom, Savelij, and Lyokha to Miller at Polis. Miller appologises for pretending to not believe Artyom's claim that he'd heard a radio transmission at Ostankino, that he had to keep the truth of other cities surviving a secret to prevent the denizens of the Metro from leaving to search for friends and family in other cities. Miller then offers to reinstate Artyom as a Ranger, and he agrees. His first new mission is to deliver 20 000 bullets to Hanza. He goes with Letyaga, along with Savelij and Lyokha who are inducted into the Order, and a few other unnamed Rangers.
When they arrive, Letyaga orders them to keep their flashlights off and use infrared goggles only. As men arrive to take the bullets, Artyom recognises a voice and turns on his flashlight and discovers the men are Reds, led by Svinolup. The unnamed Rangers drag Artyom off, saying they were ordered by Miller to kill him if he found out the truth of who they were giving the bullets to. Letyaga shoots at them and runs off with Artyom, Savelij, and Lyokha, pursued by Miller's men. They flee into the nearest station, Komsomol, where a crowd of hundreds of starving Red Line citizens are begging for food due to a mushroom blight that's ravaging the Metro. Svinolup uses the bullets Artyom just brought to open fire on the crowd, but the civilians charge the Red Army lines and tear the soldiers apart. The crowd moves on to Hanza, where a line of Hanza soldiers open fire but are overwhelmed by sheer numbers. Artyom and his companions have been forced to follow the crowd to escape Miller's men, and Savelij is killed during the confusion.
Artyom, Letyaga, and Lyokha make their way to Trubnaya station, and discover lots of Reich refugees there. Apparently a flood caused by the Nazis blowing up the tunnel between Lubyanka and Schiller has devastated all three Reich stations, and the Führer has gone missing. Artyom finds Homer alive and well, and the two go to Tsvetnoy Bulvar to find Sasha. She argues with Homer over her choice to be a prostitute, and Artyom pledges to kill Sasha's pimp, Bessolov. While hiding in her room for the pimp, Artyom loses consciousness from his deteriorating radiation poisoning.
Artyom wakes up in a clean room with empty beds, and an IV drip in his arm. A nurse tells him he's been unconscious for a week while they've healed his radiation sickness. Despite her protests, Artyom leaves his bed and finds he's in a huge, clean bunker full of well-dressed men and women gorging themselves on fine foods while an orchestra plays for them. He recognises Bessolov, who explains they've met before, the night Artyom got blackout drunk at Tsvetnoy Bulvar. Sasha had begged Bessolov to take Artyom and heal him.
Bessolov reveals that they're in a Soviet-era bunker that was turned into a Cold War museum in the 1990s, near Taganskaya station. This is where the Invisible Watchers live, and aren't a legend at all, but the last remnants of the Russian government who in reality control all four major factions of the Metro (Hanza, Reds, Nazis, Polis) from behind the scenes. Bessolov asks Artyom to work for him in comfort, but Artyom refuses and says he wants to tell everyone in the Metro the truth. Bessolov claims no one will believe him, and has him blindfolded and sent back to Tsvetnoy Bulvar.
Artyom confronts Sasha, who says she's in love with Bessolov and won't go with Artyom. He leaves and heads to Polis, where he is put in a jail cell with Homer, Lyokha, and Letyaga, who are being held prisoner awaiting trial for "deserting the Order". Artyom comes up with a plan to use printing presses to distribute leaflets with the truth about the Invisible Watchers, and capture Bessolov when he goes to visit Sasha. When the trial begins Letyaga begins telling the Order the truth about Miller sending them to arm the Reds, which provokes outrage among the Rangers who survived the battle at D6 (among them a young ranger called Stepan). One of Miller's men kills Letyaga, and the Order starts to fight each other hand-to-hand as most were unarmed at the trial. Some of Miller's loyalists capture Anna and threaten to kill her if Artyom doesn't surrender to them, which he does.
Artyom is brought to Arbat station, and he hopes Lyokha can capture Bessolov in time. The Chairman of Polis addresses the entire station, revealing that Moscow is not the only city left. He plays a radio broadcast he claims is from New York City consisting of a hip-hop song, and that the war between Russia and the West is still ongoing. The Chairman proclaims that Polis will try to unite the entire Metro to protect themselves from the West. Artyom then notices Bessolov with Lyokha, only to discover Lyokha has betrayed him and is working for Bessolov now. He then finds that Homer refused to make the leaflets, and has been offered a job at Polis to write a book about Artyom's fight with the Dark Ones, and Homer agreed. Feeling betrayed, Artyom flees Polis with Anna and a Ranger named Timurchik. They head to the surface and find Savelij's car. Timurchik is killed by Rangers, but Artyom and Anna flee to VDNKh.
Although he tries to convince the people of Exhibition to leave the Metro with him, only Anna agrees, the rest of the station calling him crazy. Things get worse when two men from Hanza arrive and demand Sukhoi turn Artyom over to them under threat of a blockade of the station. Artyom and Anna load up Savelij's car with as much food, water, filters, and diesel as it can carry. After saying goodbye to Sukhoi, Artyom and Anna start driving east to Vladivostok, some 9 000 kilometers distant.
The book's epilogue consists of Lyokha spying on the two with a pair of binoculars as they drive east, reporting to Bessolov via radio. Bessolov tells him to let them go, as they aren't a threat to him anymore.
Joystiq, a video game news website, first mentioned the name of the book in an article posted on 1 March, 2013. On 23 March, 2013 - a video was uploaded to YouTube from PAX East 2013, by 4PlayerPodcast , where Glukhovsky gave an interview detailing some of the story aspects of Metro: Last Light. After about 8 minutes and 40 seconds in the video, the author revealed that he was working on a new book set in the Metro universe, called Metro 2035 with the same story as Metro: Last Light - thus once again casting Artyom as the protagonist - but in much greater detail and length than the game itself (this eventually turned out to be not entirely true, possibly due to unforeseen changes in writing the story).
Through the use of frequent public posts with his Twitter and Instagram accounts, Glukhovsky kept his fans updated on the progress being made with the novel's production. At one point he revealed that the book could be released at a later date in 2014. However, this was not to be the case. By March of 2015, chapters of Metro 2035 began being published in the Russian version of the free newspaper called Metro, distributed in the subways of the 7 biggest Russian cities. Later in March of the same year, the writer finally revealed the publication date of "June 2015" and confirmed that he had finished writing the book. Glukhovsky told English fans that a translation of the novel will be published in 2016 at the earliest. This was confirmed by the reveal of a new cover and announcement of plans to publish the book in English by Christmas 2016. The translation was published independently in early December of the same year.
Metro: Last LightEdit
Contrary to the information given by Glukhovsky before Metro 2035 was published, this book is not a direct continuation of Metro: Last Light and is actually set a year after some of its events. It is closer to being a successor to Last Light, but even that is not entirely true as the games and the books follow a different canon. Metro 2035 takes only some inspiration from 4A Games (for example the character of Anna and her relationship with Artyom), yet many other aspects of the story created for the Ukrainian game are completely omitted in the novel and so it would be more appropriate to call it a direct sequel to Metro 2033, set one year after the events of Metro 2034, which had a different protagonist and shares a few of its major characters with the last entry in the trilogy.
Metro 2035 follows from what could be interpreted as an extremely altered version of Last Light's Redemption ending. In the canon of Glukhovsky's books, Artyom was indeed accepted into the Ranger Order after the annihilation of the Dark Ones and served with them for a year up until 2034, when a bloody conflict with the Red Line occurred that led to Miller losing his right arm and both legs - as well as the deaths of half of his men, including Ulman. General Korbut is mentioned as being the officer in command of Red troops who attacked the Rangers without Moksvin's full consent.
The battle is said to have been fought over a "bunker" and sounds very similar to the Battle for D6, but no explicit mention of D6 is ever made. The whole subplot of the game about the little Dark One is completely absent from the world of the books; Artyom realises his mistake just as in in the games and is aware that the Dark Ones were mankind's last remaining salvation, but in Glukhovsky's canon they seem to have been completely exterminated in the year 2033. Khan, just as in Metro 2034, is also absent from the story. The main plot of Metro 2035, as the name implies, is set in 2035 - one year after Artyom left the Order.
If the radio transmission Artyom hears is accurate and Arseniy isn't lying, there are survivors in the following places:
- Saint Petersburg, Russia (confirmed even earlier by several novels from the Universe of Metro 2033 series, such as Piter and Dyakov's trilogy, started by Towards the Light)
- Vladivostok, Russia
- Kazan, Russia
- Ufa, Russia
- Mirny (either a Russian outpost in Antarctica, or a town in Russia)
- Sverdlovsk, Russia
- Murom, Russia
- Berlin, Germany
- Paris, France
- An unnamed English-speaking location
- The art seen on the front cover of the first English edition of Metro 2035 was originally used on the Polish cover of the Metro Trilogy, just a month earlier, in November of 2016.