Jeffrey’s review of The Brothers Karamazov > Likes and Comments

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message 1: by Daniel (new)

Daniel I love this book. I'm hoping to re-read it some day, soon.


message 2: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten I decided to take this book on a plane ride to San Francisco. Usually I go for lighter fare, so I thought I was a little nuts taking this. The translation must be excellent because I blew through the first 300 pages. It turned out to be an excellent plane/airport book.


message 3: by Daniel (new)

Daniel I can see that: it's a great book in which to lose yourself.


message 4: by Sean (new)

Sean I will have to give this a try as many people say this is better than Crime and Punishment. I have to say I had a hard time getting through that one.


message 5: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Sean wrote: "I will have to give this a try as many people say this is better than Crime and Punishment. I have to say I had a hard time getting through that one."

I think as long as you stick with the new translations you'll be fine. I'm planning to reread Crime and Punishment by these same translators.


message 6: by Kemper (new)

Kemper Did you just work Farscape's 'frilling' into a Dostoyevsky review? I salute you...


message 7: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Kemper wrote: "Did you just work Farscape's 'frilling' into a Dostoyevsky review? I salute you..."

Guilty as charged. I loved that show.


message 8: by Kalliope (new)

Kalliope On the translators (Volokonskhy and Pevear) there is an excellent article in The New Yorker:

http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2005...


message 9: by knig (new)

knig I frilling loved that show too. And your review, appropos of which Vanky, or Vanka or Vanuska is always an Ivan. Reading your review I've got this thought: the illegitimate son Smerdyakov: translates as 'stinker', 'stinky', e.g. could mean 'something fishy', etc. So, is Dostoyevski having a little joke?


message 10: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Kalliope wrote: "On the translators (Volokonskhy and Pevear) there is an excellent article in The New Yorker:

http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2005..."


Wow what an incredible article. Thank you Kalliope. I wish I had read it before I wrote this review, but I will keep it in my holster for the next P&V translation I read.


message 11: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Knig-o-lass wrote: "I frilling loved that show too. And your review, appropos of which Vanky, or Vanka or Vanuska is always an Ivan. Reading your review I've got this thought: the illegitimate son Smerdyakov: translat..."

Haha I think you are definitely hitting the nail on the head with that one Knig. Smerdyakov was a stinker.

Farscape had a great run. Someday, some summer over a series of lunches I should rewatch it from the beginning.

Next Russian novel for me is Dead Souls.


message 12: by Kalliope (last edited May 22, 2012 08:14AM) (new)

Kalliope Jeffrey wrote: "Kalliope wrote: "On the translators (Volokonskhy and Pevear) there is an excellent article in The New Yorker:

http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2005..."

Wow ..."


When I was growing up my father used to tell me that I had to read the Russians in French translation, since there was no reliable Russian translator in Spain at that time, while there was a strong Russian community in France. This I did until I read this article in The New Yorker. Now I am slowly getting their versions of the Russian classics.


message 13: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Kalliope wrote: "Jeffrey wrote: "Kalliope wrote: "On the translators (Volokonskhy and Pevear) there is an excellent article in The New Yorker:

http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2005......"


P&V have reinvigorated me in regards to Russian Literature. I am jealous that you had a father that reads, neither one of my parents are readers or educated past high school. I would bet your father was a good mentor for your reading selections.


message 14: by René (new)

René If you enjoyed The Brothers Karamazov, I can only recommend that you do not see the 1958 film of the same name. I did so, and today I cannot recall the character of Alexei without seeing William Shatner's face shouting "we...can't...leave...without Dimitri!" Also, impossible to remember Mitya without Yul Brynner's face popping into mind.


message 15: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten René wrote: "If you enjoyed The Brothers Karamazov, I can only recommend that you do not see the 1958 film of the same name. I did so, and today I cannot recall the character of Alexei without seeing William Sh..."

Thank you for the warning René. They just had to cast Shatner, of all the actors in all the delis and coffee shops of L.A., they had to go get Captain Kirk. Sad, really sad.


message 16: by sckenda (new)

sckenda Jeffrey, I can only speculate that gallons and gallons of good vodka must be in play to achieve this review and the courage it would require to take on the challenge of reviewing one of these masterpiece monster.


message 17: by Jeffrey (last edited May 22, 2012 01:12PM) (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Steve wrote: "Jeffrey, I can only speculate that gallons and gallons of good vodka must be in play to achieve this review and the courage it would require to take on the challenge of reviewing one of these maste..."

I am fortunate to have goodreads friends who indulge my paltry attempts to express my thoughts regarding such an iconic Russian book. For the sake of research I did drink vodka in the course of reading the book and writing the review. My "sacrifice" for the goodreads community was I'm afraid, a failure, as I did not at any time "feel" (more of a numbness) Russian enough to do this book justice.


message 18: by sckenda (new)

sckenda Jeffrey wrote: "Steve wrote: "Jeffrey, I can only speculate that gallons and gallons of good vodka must be in play to achieve this review and the courage it would require to take on the challenge of reviewing one ..."

Hey, Jeffrey, forget the girl from years ago, which brother do you think you most resemble?


message 19: by B0nnie (new)

B0nnie I have to disagree with René - the 1958 movie is excellent. Especially this scene with Grushenka and Katerina,
"Grushenka meanwhile seemed enthusiastic over the "sweet hand." She raised it deliberately to her lips. But she held it for two or three minutes near her lips, as though reconsidering something.
"Do you know, angel lady," she suddenly drawled in an even more soft and sugary voice, "do you know, after all, I think I won't kiss your hand?" And she laughed a little merry laugh."


message 20: by René (new)

René There's a pretty little Russian folk song in the middle of it that plays at a point when Mitya is in a bar with Grushenka. I never found the name of that ditty.


message 21: by Mark (new)

Mark This is one of those books that I have lying seductively on my to read shelf but its very complexity which is the thing that fascinates me is also the very thing that makes me sheer away


message 22: by René (new)

René I have a confession to make.

I read it, except for the passage toward the middle of the book when someone asks Yvan if he believes in God. Yvan then launches into a lengthy monologue right there and then. I flipped pages until the end of the monologue, and 11 pages later I resumed reading.

No, I didn't care if Yvan believed in God or not.

Yes, I realize that Yvan's monologue may have been the crux of the novel.

I was young. Still am, in fact.


message 23: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Steve wrote: "Jeffrey wrote: "Steve wrote: "Jeffrey, I can only speculate that gallons and gallons of good vodka must be in play to achieve this review and the courage it would require to take on the challenge o..."

Alyosha, the monk brother. I know that is going to sound odd, but personality wise I think I fit that role the best. I would bet that the girl thought I was that brother as well since she told me once she had a dream in which I had a golden pie plate behind my head. I may have been caught in a Life of Brian situation.


message 24: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Mark wrote: "This is one of those books that I have lying seductively on my to read shelf but its very complexity which is the thing that fascinates me is also the very thing that makes me sheer away"

The P&V translation was rather painless. I was overdue to get back to the Russians so the timing was right too.


message 25: by sckenda (new)

sckenda Jeffrey wrote: "Steve wrote: "Jeffrey wrote: "Steve wrote: "Jeffrey, I can only speculate that gallons and gallons of good vodka must be in play to achieve this review and the courage it would require to take on t..."

Me too, although I am not above acting the occasional Dimitri. My wife's family would think me Ivan (if they had actually ever heard of BK)-- overly secular and analytical-- but I do enjoy hamming it up for their benefit. Probably much like your Thanksgiving with pop-in-law.


message 26: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten René wrote: "I have a confession to make.

I read it, except for the passage toward the middle of the book when someone asks Yvan if he believes in God. Yvan then launches into a lengthy monologue right there a..."


11 pages short...that is like being one credit short of graduating. haha If I were a priest I'd absolve you.


message 27: by Gary (new)

Gary This book sits on my shelf, unread, at this point..... Guess I need to get busy, eh?


message 28: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Gary wrote: "This book sits on my shelf, unread, at this point..... Guess I need to get busy, eh?"

Another Russian writer that I just read that was surprisingly good is a descendant of Tolstoy. http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...


message 29: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Moonbutterfly wrote: "Excellent review Jeff. I'm tackling this for the first time and using the same edition."

Thank you Moonbutterfly! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.


message 30: by Leonard (new)

Leonard This is a great review.


message 31: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Leonard wrote: "This is a great review."

Thanks Leonard. It was fun to write.


message 32: by Paul (new)

Paul Curcione Awesome review Jeffery. You have inspired me to reread this book I read many years ago, and loved by the way. Oh, I too love Farscape.

One question- who would you cast as the leading 6 people if you were making a movie of this book?
Dad
3 brothers
Grushenka
Katrina


message 33: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Paul wrote: "Awesome review Jeffery. You have inspired me to reread this book I read many years ago, and loved by the way. Oh, I too love Farscape.

One question- who would you cast as the leading 6 people if ..."


Thanks Paul! Farscape was a hidden gem that few seem to have experienced. Let me get back to you on the casting that will take some thought.


message 34: by Jeremy (new)

Jeremy How could you not cast Malkovich as Ivan Karamazov, considering his oeuvre, and after seeing this mock-up picture imagining him as Ivan (which sent me on wild goose chase for a film that doesn't exist...)

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message 35: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Jeremy wrote: "How could you not cast Malkovich as Ivan Karamazov, considering his oeuvre, and after seeing this mock-up picture imagining him as Ivan (which sent me on wild goose chase for a film that doesn't ex..."

PERFECT! I totally agree.


message 36: by Mustafa (new)

Mustafa Hey. You're not crazy at all. I took War and Peace on a flight one time. And Don Quixote on another. And Vanity Fair on another. And so on and so forth.


message 37: by Dasha (new)

Dasha wow, good review, my gud syr.


message 38: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Dancer This was one of my college favorites. Thank you for bringing me back there. Father Zosima. Wow! I haven't thought about him in years. I was consumed with him for awhile.


message 39: by Ivonne (new)

Ivonne Rovira Thanks for bringing this book back to my attention. I read Crime and Punishment in high school, but nothing else by Dostoyevsky (save "The Grand Inquisitor" bit from this novel). The novel is nothing like I thought it was.


message 40: by Sue (new)

Sue I've had this book on hold for over a year, never having a chance to return to it. And I was half way through too. Not sure I want to begin again so I may simply pick up where I left off and see if it will work. Thanks for this great review.


message 41: by John (new)

John Kitcher Great review. Thanks for including information about the translators...i'll definitely bear that in mind in the future.


message 42: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Mustafa wrote: "Hey. You're not crazy at all. I took War and Peace on a flight one time. And Don Quixote on another. And Vanity Fair on another. And so on and so forth."

I'm starting to believe big books are best for flights. I recently read most of Great Expectations on a flight to Alabama.


message 43: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Dasha wrote: "wow, good review, my gud syr."

Thanks Dasha!


message 44: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Benjamin wrote: "This was one of my college favorites. Thank you for bringing me back there. Father Zosima. Wow! I haven't thought about him in years. I was consumed with him for awhile."

I could see that. All the characters leave lasting impressions. They creep into my thoughts frequently.


message 45: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Ivonne wrote: "Thanks for bringing this book back to my attention. I read Crime and Punishment in high school, but nothing else by Dostoyevsky (save "The Grand Inquisitor" bit from this novel). The novel is nothi..."

This is a fantastic book Ivonne. I hope you get a chance to read it.


message 46: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Sue wrote: "I've had this book on hold for over a year, never having a chance to return to it. And I was half way through too. Not sure I want to begin again so I may simply pick up where I left off and see if..."

Sometimes a book isn't right for the moment. I hope that moment has come for you Sue. This book has had a profound impact on me. Thanks Sue!


message 47: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten John wrote: "Great review. Thanks for including information about the translators...i'll definitely bear that in mind in the future."

You are most welcome John. Thank you!


message 48: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl My edition was 700 pages and it felt like 500. Interesting take--the recklessness of Fyodor being the basis of the plot. Great review. I loved reading and hearing about your challenge with the names of characters because I had the same issue. After reading this, I now think I will start to look at people, like the woman you mentioned, and see one of those brothers in them.


message 49: by Jeffrey (new)

Jeffrey Keeten Cheryl wrote: "My edition was 700 pages and it felt like 500. Interesting take--the recklessness of Fyodor being the basis of the plot. Great review. I loved reading and hearing about your challenge with the name..."

Thanks Cheryl! Yes the book reads like a much shorter book. It was actually a pleasure to read. To be trapped with Dostoyevsky on a plane turned out to be perfect planning for me. All people we meet can be found in the characters of this novel. I think it is a cool idea to start looking at people in relation to the people that populate this novel.


message 50: by Benjamin (new)

Benjamin Dancer Jeffrey wrote: "Benjamin wrote: "This was one of my college favorites. Thank you for bringing me back there. Father Zosima. Wow! I haven't thought about him in years. I was consumed with him for awhile."

I could ..."


Yes. When I was younger, I bought a bottle of vodka to be like the characters in this book. It didn't turn out so well for me. Maybe there are better means of handling sorrow...Lesson learned.


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