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First Love

3.79  ·  Rating Details ·  6,524 Ratings  ·  414 Reviews
A group of middle-aged men sit together after dinner and the conversation turns to first love. One of them, Vladimir Petrovich, tells his story ... As a 16-year-old, spending the summer at his parents’ country house, he glimpses ‘a tall, slender girl in a striped pink dress’: the young princess Zinaida. She is five years older, impoverished and not particularly respectable ...more
96 pages
Published 2011 by Folio Society (first published 1856)
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Feb 15, 2017 Dolors rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those wanting to remember
Recommended to Dolors by: The muses
Shelves: read-in-2017
This short story explores the complexity of love, its raptures and tormenting effects on the heart of an inexperienced young man of sixteen, Vladimir, who spends the summer of 1833 in a cottage nearby the Neskuchni gardens in the outskirts of Moscow.

Who doesn’t remember falling in love for the first time? Trying to put into words the rush of contradictory emotions, the awakening of desire tangled with the insecurities of youth and the loss of the innocence of childhood is like trying to describe
Sep 14, 2015 Algernon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015

Oh, sweet emotions, gentle harmony, goodness and peace of the softened heart, melting bliss of the first raptures of love, where are they, where are they?

Vladimir Petrovich, "a man of forty, with black hair turning gray." sits on an evening, after a good meal, with a couple of old friends, sipping the port and drawing on a good cigar. They challenge each other to tell the stories of their first time falling in love. It's a common framing device now, this looking back at the folly of youth with
Jul 08, 2015 [P] rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bitchin
Recently I have found myself drawn to novels about looking back to the past, about nostalgia and youth. I guess it is a sign that I am getting older or perhaps it is a consequence of the tough time I have been having in my personal life, where, without going into too many details, death has been on the agenda quite a lot. I find myself currently feeling highly emotional, over sensitive, and sentimental. Just yesterday, in fact, I was flicking through Alain-Fournier’s beautiful French novel Le Gr ...more
Andrei Tamaş
Mar 07, 2016 Andrei Tamaş rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pretextul literar al romanului este deja bine întipărit în conştiinţa colectivă a cititorului: după o petrecere copioasă, la ora 12 noaptea, mai rămân trei "drojdieri" şi propun să-şi istorisească fiecare povestea primei iubiri. Primii doi o relatează succint. Pentru unul prima lui iubire e actuală lui soţie, iar pentru celălalt, fusese doica lui. Această prima scenă -prologul- constituie cadrul viitoarei povestiri. Vladimir Petrovici are o poveste de iubire "mai altfel", dar simte că nu o poate ...more
I like Turgenev's style. It's softer, more subtle than some of his fellow 19th century Russian writers. He doesn't beat you over the head with a message. This story, as it's title suggests, is about the first love of 16 year old Vladimir, the son of a wealthy Russian family, who falls in love with the 21 year old daughter of their new neighbors. She is a princess, her family with a noble name but without wealth. She leads Vladimir along, and several other young suitors besides, but she's in love ...more
Further Reading
Translator's Note

--First Love
Shivam Chaturvedi
Que suis-je pour elle?
K.D. Absolutely
"I? Believe me, Zinaida Alexandrovna, whatever you did, however you tormented me, I should love and adore you to the end of my days."

This novella is about a 16-y/o Russian boy, Vladimir Petrovich of a rich family falling in love for the first time. The object of his affection is a 21-y/o princess, Zinaida Alexandrovna who has just moved to Vladimir's neighborhood. Zinaida's family used to be rich but her father squandered everything because of his vices. Zinaida is beautiful so she has many su
When you're young you think you're the Romeo of every story, but sometimes it turns out you're barely Paris. Turgenev's novella captures not only the ecstatic shamelessness of first love, but the fogginess of being young in general - that feeling of not understanding the action you're taking part in. 16-year-old Vladimir believes he's competing with other suitors for the affection of his beautiful 21-year-old neighbor Zinaida. Turgenev slowly unveils the real affair.

This was my first Turgenev;
Oh, I do like how Turgenev writes. He gets to the core of characters. You understand who they are, why each one acts as they do. He also has great ability to draw a place so it comes alive and you see it , feel it and almost smell it. Like a park at night....... and what Vladimir discovered that night!

Back track: this is about a sixteen year-old's first love. (Do you recall yours?!) He falls head over heels for a self-centered, manipulative, pretty girl. She knows she is pretty and she has her o
kebetulan, saat buku ini baru kubaca setengahnya, aku mendengarkan sebuah presentasi mengenai gender di kelas.

kelompok ini mempresentasikan buku yang diangkat dari tesis dosen mata kuliah ini juga. Buku ini berisi analisis sebuah drama karya Arifin C. Noer yang berjudul Drama Mega-mega (ugh, ingatanku begitu buruk). Drama tersebut bercerita tentang seorang perempuan bernama Mae yang menjadi ibu bagi gelandangan-gelandangan di sekitarnya. Mae sendiri merupakan janda yang telah menikah dan ditingg
Mar 27, 2016 Teresa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: n-russia, e3
"Que resultou de tudo isso... de tudo o que eu esperava? E agora, quando as sombras da noite começam a fechar-se sobre a minha vida, que me resta que seja mais puro, mais querido, que as recordações dessa breve tempestade, que chegou e partiu tão rapidamente, numa manhã de Primavera?"

(Ilustração de Anna e Elena Balbusso)
Mohammad Ali
برای امثال من این جور داستان های رومانتیک جذابیتی ندارن - به درد همون دوران رومانتیسم می خورن که دخترا از حیث فرهنگی عقب مانده [/نگه داشته شده ] بودن و اسکل بودن یا شرارتشون می شد منشأ لذت شعرا و نویسندگان؛ اونم دائم در بحبوحه ی جشن ها و بزم های اشرافی. "عشق اول" که آبکی ترینشون بود. "آسیا" - تورگنیف - و "دلاور خردسال" - داستایفسکی - باز بهتر بودن. اما باز هم چیزی نبودن که دل منو ببرن یا ذهنمو مشغول کنم

هم تورگنیف و هم داستایفسکی در حواشی داستان هاشون از برخی اشارات فراداستانی پرهیز نکردن. در "آس
Negar Khalili
چطور؟؟ چطور؟؟ واقعا چه طور این نویسندگان روس می تونن چنین شخصیت هایی بپردازن؟؟
واقعا توان شخصیت پردازی این ادبیات عجیب و نفس گیره...
واقعا عالیه کتابهای ادبیات روس در زمینه شخصیت پردازی عااالی ان
I think the two things I was reminded from this novella is the reminder that life will not wait for us and that often we hurt the ones we love the most. An impassioned tale of first love and unrequited love in its truest form. What seems obvious to the reader comes as a great shock to the main character as he learns of the identity of the lover of the woman he most desires. I think it is fair to say that even in 1860 Russia a common theme in life is not noticing the faults in those you care for ...more
Dec 24, 2014 Eadweard rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction-read, russian
I felt so much nostalgia while reading this.
May 13, 2009 Ben rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In this beautiful short novel, Turgenev creates within the reader the selfsame titular feeling—that diabolical mixture of hope, frustration, anxiety, and inevitable heart break—that visits on many of us in the guise of our first love. Perhaps, there's something to be said of reading this novel in spring (or whatever change in the weather precipitated your own first romantic embranglement). Additionally, my hat is permanently off to Sergey Rachmaninov for providing the perfect soundtrack in his P ...more
Angelica Juarez Gonzalez
Jun 12, 2017 Angelica Juarez Gonzalez rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Angelica by: Gaby
Shelves: 2017, clasicos
"¡Oh, juventud! ¡Juventud! Nada te importa, parece que eres la dueña de todos los tesoros del universo, hasta la tristeza te distrae, hasta la pena te embellece; eres presuntuosa y atrevida, tú dices: ¡sólo yo vivo, mírenme! y no te das cuenta de que tus días corren y desaparecen sin dejar huella y sin ser contados, y todo en ti se derrite, como la cera al sol, como la nieve... Y quizá todo el secreto de tu encanto no resida en la facultad que tienes de alcanzarlo todo, sino en la facultad de c
Dec 05, 2015 Soycd rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Hijo mío -me escribía-, teme el amor de una mujer, teme esa dicha, ese veneno..."

A primera vista, el argumento de Primer Amor no parece demasiado original: Vladimir Petrovich, en medio de una reunión con viejos amigos, decide evocar el recuerdo de su trágico primer enamoramiento adolescente, que por supuesto simboliza su transformación de niño ingenuo y despreocupado en adulto. Una historia vista muchas veces. Lo que sigue es realmente maravilloso. Turgenev es un maestro para crear personajes
Foad Ansari
کتابی بود از ایوان تورگینف و سومین کتابی که از این نویسنده میخوانم
در این داستان عشق و هیجان و احساسات و جوانی و هوس کاملا تحقیر شده بود
عقل و منطق مطالعه و شعور مورد ستایش قرار گرفته بود
به نظرم داستان پند آمیزی بود که همیشه میتواند جوانها رو از دام هوس و هیجان و. اتلاف وقت دور کند
هر چند متاسفانه در کشوری زندگی میکنیم که شور و عشق و هیجان و هوا و هوس از هر چیزی با ارزش تر و مقبول تر است
Renamed first Crush

As far as classics go, maybe I am just a little too much of the modern mind to appreciate this book. Having read this book, it's title First Love seems a little to strong for the relationship our main protagonist and narrator, Vladimir Petrovich, recounts in this novella. Love, the multifaceted, driver of the heart is a deep and complex master. It is composed of many aspects. It takes on many forms. But this simply was not it. Maybe in 1860, the year of this novellas first p
Aug 07, 2011 Ryan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ivan Turgenev's story was a linear and controlled exploration of being in love at a young age. It offered a portrait of a transition from youth to adulthood: from the confusion and giddy puzzlement that accompanied the raw feelings of youth to a more luminous perception of reality as one gained more experience. The protagonist was a sixteen-year-old student, a young man of middle class background. The object of his affection was a young princess, his senior by a few years, who, with her mother, ...more
Dec 04, 2014 Xainab rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, so you can easily see the "twists" coming from a mile away, even though the narrator, for the most part, remains oblivious as heck. But perhaps the poor kid's frustrating ignorance is simply a reflection of how naive and blind that reckless form of 'first love' often is. The author captures the intensity, the senselessness, the mindless abandon of that emotion with a painful accuracy. Moments like these certainly made my heart ache:

"I did not want to know whether I was loved, and I did not
Sep 08, 2016 Amisha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Incredibly beautiful book about love, passion and devotion.
The book is so simple yet beautifully written. It takes you from the level of innocent flirtation to the power that resides in love. This is the first of all the short reads I've come across that left me within a swirl of emotions because unlike any of them, "First Love" connected with a relatable emotion from the very first page, despite the setting being the 1800s.
Freesiab (Bookish Review)
A beautiful short novel about the sting of first love. My first read by this author, it was both precise and dreamy in its writing. There are always those cruel edges to first love and who better than a Russian classic writer to share them.
Mia (Parentheses Enthusiast)
Review to come soon, but until then, a warning: DO NOT buy the edition that I bought. The translation is hideous.

এক কথায়, অপূরব। নাম-ধাম দেখে নযাকা পরেমের গলপ মনে হতে পারে, পড়া শুরু করে মনে হতে পারে এত পযানপযানানি কেন? কিনতু একটু ধৈরযয ধরলে মেওয়া ফলে। যেই গলপ শুরু হয়েছিল হালকা চটুল মেজাজে - জারের আমলে বনেদী রুশ পরিবারের গরীষমের ছুটি কাটানোর কাহিনী তো আর নতুন নয়, টিনেজ করাশের ফরমুলাও সাহিতযে ঢের পুরাতন - সেই গলপই ধীরে ধীরে মোড় নেয়, শেষে আশচরযরকম বিয়োগানতক হয়ে ওঠে। এক ধরনের tragic grandeur আচছনন করে রাখে গলপের সমাপতিকে।

উনিশ শতকের মধযভাগের রুশ মহারথীদের মধযে তলসতয় আর দসতয়েভসকির পরেই সথান দেয়া হয় তুরগেনেভ-কে।
Oct 15, 2013 Lobstergirl rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, fiction, russia

First Love begins as a frame story; three middle-aged gentleman sitting around after dinner get the idea to ask each other about their first experience of love. One man's story involves his childhood nanny (nonsexual). The second man is still married to his first love. The third gent, Vladimir Petrovich, agrees to write down his story and read it to them in a fortnight. The novella ends with the end of his story, and the "frame" conceit is not resumed.

Vladimir's first love happens when he is 16,
Mirvan  Ereon
Apr 20, 2012 Mirvan Ereon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have a thing for Russian novellas. I love how they do it so well in such a well-numbered book. The emotions are all so lovely and they seem to have a penchant for poignant emotions and exquisite details. I badly am desperate for more.

This one is one of the best I have read so far. I have a Penguin Great Loves edition of this. This book is short but the impact it will leave is unforgettable. I love the way it starts as a sweet story of a boy who fell in love with a girl. The innocence of this f
Victoria Patterson
Such a tragic story--Turgenev's descriptions of a sixteen year old boy falling in love for the first time ("I moved as if in a dream and felt all through my being a sort of intense blissfulness that verged on imbecility"). And the aftermath, the disappointment. An amazing example of how to write emotions through physical details. He leaves nothing out. Also, for structure. How does he pack so much in a short novella?

This edition is a disappointment: there were editing errors, which is a pet pee
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Around the Year i...: First Love, by Ivan Turgenev 4 10 Jul 16, 2016 02:45AM  
  • A Russian Affair (Great Loves, #10)
  • Cures for Love  (Great Loves, #5)
  • Bodily Secrets (Great Loves, #19)
  • The Eaten Heart: Unlikely Tales of Love (Great Loves, #3)
  • A Mere Interlude
  • Magnetism (Great Loves, #12)
  • Something Childish But Very Natural (Great Loves, #13)
  • Of Mistresses, Tigresses and Other Conquests (Great Loves, #4)
  • Doomed Love (Great Loves, #1)
  • Forbidden Fruit: From The Letters of Abelard and Heloise
  • The Cossacks and Other Stories
  • Story of a Life
  • The Women Who Got Away (Great Loves, #20)
  • The Squabble
  • Sleepwalker in a Fog
  • The Lemoine Affair
  • The Eternal Husband
  • Tales of Belkin
Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev (Cyrillic: Иван Тургенев) was a novelist, poet and dramatist, and now ranks as one of the towering figures of Russian literature. His major works include the short-story collection A Sportsman’s Sketches (1852) and the novels Rudin (1856), Home of the Gentry (1859), On the Eve (1860), and Fathers and Sons (1862). These works offer realistic, affectionate portrayals of the ...more
More about Ivan Turgenev...

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“O youth! youth! you go your way heedless, uncaring – as if you owned all the treasures of the world; even grief elates you, even sorrow sits well upon your brow. You are self-confident and insolent and you say, 'I alone am alive – behold!' even while your own days fly past and vanish without trace and without number, and everything within you melts away like wax in the sun .. like snow .. and perhaps the whole secret of your enchantment lies not, indeed, in your power to do whatever you may will, but in your power to think that there is nothing you will not do: it is this that you scatter to the winds – gifts which you could never have used to any other purpose. Each of us feels most deeply convinced that he has been too prodigal of his gifts – that he has a right to cry, 'Oh, what could I not have done, if only I had not wasted my time.” 56 likes
“I burnt as in a fire in her presence ... but what did I care to know what the fire was in which I burned and melted--it was enough that it was sweet to burn and melt.” 23 likes
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