OMG Reading Ninjas, this whole 'read a classic novel thing every month' is harder than I thought it would be - and I blame Leo Tolstoy! So back about 6-8 weeks ago a friend of mine told me he won't read a book over 2 inches thick unless it's by some dead Russian dude. So with that in mind, I decided to dive into the great classic
Holy Crap - almost 40hrs of audio book later I'm finally done! This is NOT for the faint hearted, let me tell you. It just goes on and on.... Now don't get me wrong, it's not a BAD book... It's just not a GOOD book. I really don't understand why it's known as such a great, classic novel. It documents the life of a group of 19th century Russian aristocrats, it jumps from English speaking, to French, German and Russian (I know, aristocrats back then spoke all these languages but hey, I'm reading -let's just stick to one). Every male in the story seems to be names Sergi in some form and everyone is referred to by their full names at all times, even when simply stating that they entered a room.
By the time I got to the half way point, I gave up the hope that the story would get better and actually become interesting - and yet I plowed on because, hey, I was half way now and not about to give up. By the 75% mark, I was simply hoping someone/everyone would die simply so it would be over. Again, don't be misled - not BAD just REALLY REALLY LONG! Now, I'm about to say something you'll almost NEVER hear from a Reading Ninja - I think the movie would probably be better and fully intend to Youtube a version this weekend. The writing is just sooooo wordy. It seems to take forever and hundreds of words to describe anything and the description isn't particularly imagination invoking. (you know how I mean, it doesn't inspire the pictures in my head that great, descriptive writing does.) Because of that, I really think that it'd be a much better movie or mini-series than book, I really want to SEE what's happening and via the book - I cannot.
So if you're looking for over 1000pages of Russian regency reading with none of the heat and spice of Bridgerton; or if you know someone studying literature at university and you can't understand why they're so depressed and questioning their life choices, or you just want to be able to boast that you've read it or maybe find something in it that I didn't and want to tell me why it's a great novel, they CLICK CLICK and put aside the rest of the year to dive into Russian life.
Described by William Faulkner as the best novel ever written and by Fyodor Dostoevsky as “flawless,” Anna Karenina tells of the doomed love affair between the sensuous and rebellious Anna and the dashing officer, Count Vronsky.
Tragedy unfolds as Anna rejects her passionless marriage and thereby exposes herself to the hypocrisies of society.
Set against a vast and richly textured canvas of nineteenth-century Russia, the novel's seven major characters create a dynamic imbalance, playing out the contrasts of city and country life and all the variations on love and family happiness.