One of the forgotten names of recent history is Yuri Andropov, the fourth General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and the successor to Leonid Brezhnev. In the West at least, his name seems to have become buried among the pile of relics that accumulated in the wake of the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s. As far as I can determine, there is still no comprehensive English language biography of him currently in print; what studies do exist were written years ago and do not incorporate the latest research. This is unfortunate. His career spanned an important period of Soviet history, and his policies have proven to be more influential than is generally believed. The student of modern Russian history owes it to himself to examine his life and career diligently.