Mar 09, 12
Read from February 10 to March 09, 2012
There is no criticism of this book that hasn't been written that needs to be; I can add nothing. I can say, though, that I was relieved to find it so readable, and containing just enough humor and melodrama (boy, am I a sucker for melodrama) to keep it from being a stuffy classic.
The story of Anna and Vronsky (of which anyone with a working knowledge of the classics knows at least an outline) is balanced with the romance of Kitty (Anna's sister-in-law's sister) and Levin. This sweet story provided the few duller moments, however, as Levin, a wealthy landowner, frets about the importance of Russian agricultural life and the peasant situation, and later about the meaning of life. Levin is downright emo, in fact, with his tendency toward easy embarrassment and moping.
This is a long book, and I will admit to joking about my desire to get Anna and the train together about 200 pages before it actually happened. But when it did, it kind of broke my heart a little, and she was never much of a sympathetic character.
I am much less afraid of Russian authors after this. A great book.