bendyroad's Reviews > Anna Karenina

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
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's review
Mar 10, 2009

bookshelves: classics
Read in March, 2009

I finished this last night much to my relief, having raced through 90% of it while in Moscow and then having serious doubts that I would ever reach the end after I got home.

Anna Karenina is a morality tale of sorts, but explored through the realism and humanity of its characters, principally the two main relationships around which the story winds. Ultimately, the message is that to live selfishly will not be rewarded.

There's also a lot of social commentary on the differences in attitude between Moscow and St Petersberg at the time, on political sinecures, on societal structure and even some hints of socialist ideas already in existence which seems surprising for a novel published in 1877, although Tolstoy, as an aristocrat, would have been heavily opposed.

A very interesting window into Russia at the time of writing.

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