My Life
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

My Life

3.92 of 5 stars 3.92  ·  rating details  ·  282 ratings  ·  27 reviews
...perhaps I was not living as I ought.

Renowned as the greatest short story writer ever, Anton Chekhov was also a master of the novella, and perhaps his most overlooked is this gem, My Life—the tale of a rebellious young man so disgusted with bourgeois society that he drops out to live amongst the working classes, only to find himself confronted by the morally and mentally...more
Paperback, 150 pages
Published May 1st 2004 by Melville House (first published 1896)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
Curious George by H.A. ReyHow Not to Murder Your Grumpy by Carol E. WyerThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg LarssonWatchmen by Alan MooreOne Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss
Yellowest Books Ever
136th out of 811 books — 382 voters
Bartleby, the Scrivener by Herman MelvilleThe Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan DoyleThe Awakening by Kate ChopinThe Man that Corrupted Hadleyburg by Mark TwainThe Death of Ivan Ilych by Leo Tolstoy
Melville House Art of the Novella
16th out of 55 books — 32 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 616)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
I have previously hated Chekhov ever since, in high school, I was forced to perform one of his plays in drama class. It was called "The Bear" and was probably a horrible translation, because the lines were stilted and, even worse, I had to kiss someone that I had complicated feelings about. Apparently that was the purpose of drama class, since it happened to me like six different times, even before I had ever kissed someone FOR REALS. Eww.

But this book was actually surprisingly good, especially...more
Эта история о том как сложно вырваться из рамок узкого мышления и устоявшихся устоев.

Одни смирились с этими рамками и идут в них на поводу, другие бороться но не достаточно, чтобы преодолеть их, некоторые преодолевают, но оглядываются всё время назад, некоторые слишком сильно отрываются и до поры до времени витают в облаках. Так как же правильно? Автор не даёт ответов, а лишь исскустно описывает картину жизни главных героев, и как ему свойственно изящно высмеивает и осуждает множественные челове...more
(Hay un punto que me inquieta de Chejov: el hecho de que el tipo haya considerado sus textos dramáticos como comedias. ¿En la cabeza de quién se le ocurre pensar a Tío Vania o La Gaviota como comedias? ¿Acaso es una joda bárbara la caída en desgracia de la clase rusa terrateniente y/o noble a fines del siglo XIX?)

Drama como comedia clasista. Con esta idea llegué a Relato de mi vida, novella que narra el coming of age de un traidor a su clase. A saber: Misail (25-26), hijo del arquitecto de una c...more
Aug 08, 2013 Anna rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: novels
It's so wonderful. Probably the longest single work Chekhov wrote.
Bridgette Davis
I loved the argument in this book between Misail (the protagonist) and Dr. Blagovo. It is, in fact, a wonderful argument that could be had today. Misail expresses the underlying principle of his life choices, "that is what is wanted is that the strong should not enslave the weak, that the minority should not be a parasite on the majority, nor a vampire for ever sucking its vital sap; that is, all, without exception, strong and weak, rich and poor, should take part equally in the struggle for exi...more
Jon Ballard
Just what I expected from a Chekhov story; lean, unsentimental prose; a main character striving to understand and be understood; and a strain of melancholy that seems true to the characters, the plot, and to life itself. The ending seemed rushed, however, and undercut the overall power of the story. I prefer many of his short stories to this novella, but it's a worthwhile read, and maybe a nice intro to Chekhov for the uninitiated.
Ana Maria Rînceanu
This story shows how how idealistic, young, confused youth is affected when in contact with real life, with the dual forms of power and powerty and love. Chekhov's writes not to judge, but to sublty show events and then lets us draw the conclusions for ourselves. One quote sticks out in my mind: "if anyone is sincere he is right". I'm not quite sure what to make of it.
Saman Kashi
در رمان (زندگي من) رئاليسم خاص (چخوف) جلو‌گر است و زندگي آن‌گونه كه در روستاهاي روسيه مي‌گذشته، يعني آكنده از زشتي، وحشي‌گري و بي‌عاطفگي ارائه مي‌شود. انتشار اين رمان خشم سنت‌گرايان و نيز نوگرايان را برانگيخت. چرا كه تاب نگاه عيني چخوف را نداشتند. هيئت سانسور تهديد كرد كه چنانچه (چخوف) صحنه‌‌اي را كه در آن مقامات را مسئول بي‌سوادي روستاييان مي‌داند و به نظر روستاييان نسبت به مذهب اشاره دارد را حذف نكند، دستگير مي‌شود. با اين همه ، (چخوف) به جنبه‌هاي لطيف‌تر زندگي زن‌ها و مردها و به خصوص مناظر دل...more
Interesting to consider My Life in light of Nabokov's stance on books with morals. I'm not sure if there's an easy moral to My Life, and yet it deals with moral issues, far more subtly and convincingly than a book like Lolita. Books should be realistic, in the sense of reflecting some kind of reality, but I much prefer a book like this, where Misail makes a moral choice and then has to deal with the realities of that choice. It's "realistic", but explores what happens when a certain accepted rea...more
این گوشه‌ای از زندگی چخوف، نمایش‌نامه‌نویس و داستان‌سرای بی‌همتاست. آغاز جوانی اوست. از زندگی خشک و بی‌روح پدری که اسیر اوهام اشرافی است می‌گریزد، پی کارهای بدنی و رنگ کردن شیروانی می‌رود. این شهامت، در آن شهر کوچک، دختر اعیان‌زاده‌ای را شیفته او می‌‌کند. هر دو از شهر دل برمی‌کنند و به زندگی روستایی و کارهای تولیدی فلاکت‌بار پناه می‌برند... ولی سیل سهمگین زندگی اجتماعی همه این هوس‌بازی‌های هوشمندانه را می‌شوید و با خود می‌‌برد . . . .ـ
May 31, 2012 Becca rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
This seems like the sort of thing I should've read in college, in some "Literature of the Russian Revolution" class, because it's completely about communism and I don't understand enough about communism to have appreciated it as much as I could've. Glad to have read it, though! Reminded me (even in translation) of what it feels like to read truly good writing (harder but worthwhile. Like going for a mental jog).
بی حوصله و بیکار به کتابخانه اداره رفتم، این کتاب را پیدا کردم، هرچیزی به راحتی نمی توانست سرگرمم کنه، نیم ساعتی طول کشید و بعد آنچنان ذهنم را درگیر خودش کرد که دیگه چیزی بهش راه پیدا نکرد، ذهنم درگیر ایده ها و افکاری قرار گرفت که جدا از قابل تامل بودنشون کنجکاو شدم بدونم کدومشون به چخوف نزدیکتره. شاید این کتاب را بخرم اما حتما دنبال نوشته های دیگه چخوف هستم
Melville House Publishing
This beautifully packaged series of classic novellas includes the works of Anton Chekhov, Colette, Henry James, Herman Melville, and Leo Tolstoy. These collectible editions are the first single-volume publications of these classic tales, offering a closer look at this underappreciated literary form and providing a fresh take on the world's most celebrated authors.
Angel Serrano
Misail crece en un entorno acomodado, pero le agobia la hipocresía y la corrupción que le rodean. A pesar de las opciones de llevar una vida cómoda, prefiere abandonar su clase social y acercarse al trabajo manual, al estilo de Levin en Anna Karenina, de Tolstoi.
May 14, 2008 Joshua rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people with short attention spans
Ah, the story of a man who turns his back on his high-class roots and slaves it with peasants, only to find out that peasants are assholes too. A good little novella, kinda depressing. A good read for a plane the Ukraine.
Mariana Orantes
"Si tuviera deseos de encargarme un anillo, eligiría la siguiente inscripción: 'nada pasa'. "
De verdad me gustó este libro, como todo lo de Chéjov. Tiene un ritmo muy bueno; la manera en que pasan las cosas es genial.
کتاب مجموعه سه داستان است که از قضا در داستان دوم ناصرالدین شاه نیز رل بسیار کوچکی دارد، در حد قاب عکس روی دیوار! داستان اول یعنی زندگی من که احتمالا بی شباهت به زندگی چخوف نیست بلندتر و به نظر من جالب تر نیز هست
Beautifully written, and gives an understanding of his feelings and personality, his situation without actually having to explain.
Ofelia Hunt
May 22, 2007 Ofelia Hunt rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people
"I missed her fearfully, and could no longer deceive myself, and tried to get other people to deceive me."

Chekhov knows about lying.
Manick Govinda
Terrific book on the deadening effects of provincial living. A gem of a novella.
RK Byers
i know this wasn't one of his major works, but i really like his style.
زندگی من - آنتوان چخوف
سازمان انتشارات کتابهای جیبی
از كتابهايي محسوب ميشه كه هرگز فراموشش نمي كنم
Shokufeh شکوفه  Kavani کاوانی
این یکی از زیباترین کتابهائ عصر ماست.
Beautiful, as is all chekhov.
sad, grand.
Alice Poon
Alice Poon marked it as to-read
Jul 29, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 20 21 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Squabble
  • The Lemoine Affair
  • The Eternal Husband
  • The Lesson of the Master
  • The Man Who Corrupted Hadleyburg
  • The Devil
  • The Horla
  • The Enchanted Wanderer
  • May Day
  • The Distracted Preacher and Other Tales
  • Tales of Belkin
  • The Touchstone
  • The Girl with the Golden Eyes
  • El duelo
  • The Lifted Veil
  • The Dialogue of the Dogs
  • Michael Kohlhaas
  • Adolphe
Anton Pavlovich Chekhov (Russian: Антон Павлович Чехов) was born in the small seaport of Taganrog, southern Russia, the son of a grocer. Chekhov's grandfather was a serf, who had bought his own freedom and that of his three sons in 1841. He also taught himself to read and write. Yevgenia Morozova, Chekhov's mother, was the daughter of a cloth merchant.

"When I think back on my childhood," Chekhov r...more
More about Anton Chekhov...
Selected Stories The Cherry Orchard The Seagull The Complete Short Novels Uncle Vanya

Share This Book

“In the past when I was younger my friends and relations had known what to do with me: some of them used to advise me to volunteer for the army, others to get a job in a pharmacy, and others in the telegraph department; now that I am over twenty-five, that grey hairs are beginning to show on my temples, and that I have been already in the army, and in a pharmacy, and in the telegraph department, it would seem that all earthly possibilities have been exhausted, and people have given up advising me, and merely sigh or shake their heads.” 3 likes
“THE Superintendent said to me: "I only keep you out of regard for your worthy father; but for that you would have been sent flying long ago." I replied to him: "You flatter me too much, your Excellency, in assuming that I am capable of flying.” 2 likes
More quotes…