I don't mean any disrespect, however I think you keep missing things. Did you visit Russia just yet. They are a major part of Eastern Europe, since anything east of Ural Mountains is part of Europe and anything west of Ural Mountains is part of Asia.
It truly boggles my mind when people keep mistaking Russia for part of Asia entirely. Half of it is in Europe and half of it is in Asia. Cities such as Moscow and St.Petersburg are major cities in Europe and especially Eastern Europe. Is there a specific reason why Russia is not going to be part of your book? Are you saving Russia for something else in the future?
Also are you also going to discuss in your book countries such as Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan and Armenia. All these countries listed are part of Eastern Europe and played a major part of European history to some extent or another throughout the course of 20th century.
You're absolutely right! Well, you're wrong about "half" of Russia being in Europe. At best, perhaps 20% of Russia is in Europe. About 80% of Russia is in Asia (east of the Urals). Look at a map.
However, your overall point is correct: that part of Russia is in Eastern Europe. I've always known about the Urals being the limit of Europe, but I had decided not to write about Russia in my book because:
* Eastern Europeans don't consider Russians to be Eastern Europeans.
* Russians don't consider themselves European.
Everyone says, "Russians are just.... well.... RUSSIANS." They have their own category. They're special. They have a foot in each continent, so they are unique.
However, you'll be happy to know that I'm taking your advice and I WILL include a chapter about Russia in my book. I visited Russia 10 years ago. But I need a refresher. So, again, following your advice: I'm going there.... TOMORROW. No joke.
I'll spend 2 weeks there.
Although I'll like to get as far as the Urals, I doubt I can make it that far. But I do promise to see something outside of St. Petersburg and Moscow, which most Russians say "is not really Russia."
Finally, you're also right about the Caucasus region being part of Europe. Again, I've known this for years because I knew that Mt. Elbrus is the tallest mountain in Europe. I debated if I should include them in my book about Eastern Europe, but in this case I won't. I'm sure the authors of Lonely Planet had a similar debate, but if you buy their book on Eastern Europe you'll notice that the Caucasus region is NOT included.
Although I've never been there, I sense that the Caucasus region belongs in my future book on the Middle East. There is a heavy Muslim influence there. I bet it doesn't feel like Europe like Bulgaria feels like Europe. I could be wrong, but that's what I've decided to do.
Therefore, you've got one victory. Russia is in. Caucasus is still out though. Sorry.
Thanks for the input!