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Anna Karenina

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4.05  ·  Rating details ·  684,348 ratings  ·  25,409 reviews
Acclaimed by many as the world's greatest novel, Anna Karenina provides a vast panorama of contemporary life in Russia and of humanity in general. In it Tolstoy uses his intense imaginative insight to create some of the most memorable characters in all of literature. Anna is a sophisticated woman who abandons her empty existence as the wife of Karenin and turns to Count Vr ...more
Paperback, Movie Tie-In Edition, 964 pages
Published October 16th 2012 by Vintage (first published 1877)
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Carly Tia I know that he stated that Kitty was modeled after his own wife, so it would make sense that Levin is modeled after himself on some level. I absolutel…moreI know that he stated that Kitty was modeled after his own wife, so it would make sense that Levin is modeled after himself on some level. I absolutely loved that character and the last chapter of the book left me feeling like I will name my first son Levin. I liked the juxtaposition of Anna and Levin - ego vs. love, pride v. humility. Levin was the star and presented a great moral story.(less)
Joanna Lloyd The best rendition I've ever seen is the 2000 series by (I think) channel 4 with Helen McCrory as Anna, Douglas Henshall as Levin and Mark Strong as O…moreThe best rendition I've ever seen is the 2000 series by (I think) channel 4 with Helen McCrory as Anna, Douglas Henshall as Levin and Mark Strong as Oblonsky. Really good casting especially McCrory. I first read the book in my mid teens and every 3 or 4 years since and this series respects all the relationships in the book. Not a cheap dvd although every couple of years, Yesterday channel repeats the series. Hope you enjoy it. (less)

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Nataliya
May 02, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Nataliya by: The annoying movie ad on Goodreads - the blinking and flashing and seizure-inducing one
As a daughter of a Russian literature teacher, it seems I have always known the story of Anna Karenina: the love, the affair, the train - the whole shebang. I must have ingested the knowledge with my mother's milk, as Russians would say.

............

My grandpa had an old print of a painting hanging in his garage. A young beautiful mysterious woman sitting in a carriage in wintry Moscow and looking at the viewer through her heavy-lidded eyes with a stare that combines allure and deep sadness. "Who
...more
Terry
Apr 27, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Terry by: Rich Moran
In the beginning, reading Anna Karenin can feel a little like visiting Paris for the first time. You’ve heard a lot about the place before you go. Much of what you see from the bus you recognize from pictures and movies and books. You can’t help but think of the great writers and artists who have been here before you. You expect to like it. You want to like it. But you don’t want to feel like you have to like it. You worry a little that you won’t. But after a few days, you settle in, and you fee ...more
Jeffrey Keeten
***Spoiler alert. If you have read this book, please proceed. If you are never going to read this novel (be honest with yourself), then please proceed. If you may read this novel, but it may be decades in the future, then please proceed. Trust me, you are not going to remember, no matter how compelling a review I have written. If you need Tolstoy talking points for your next cocktail party or soiree with those literary, black wearing, pseudo intellectual friends of yours, then this review will c ...more
Emily May
This is a book that I was actually dreading reading for quite some time. It was on a list of books that I'd been working my way through and, after seeing the size of it and the fact that 'War And Peace' was voted #1 book to avoid reading, I was reluctant to ever get started. But am I glad that I did.
This is a surprisingly fast-moving, interesting and easy to read novel. The last of which I'd of never believed could be true before reading it, but you find yourself instantly engrossed in this kind
...more
Brad
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Christopher
In lieu of a proper review of my favorite book, and in addition to the remark that it would be more aptly named Konstantin Levin, I present to you the characters of Anna Karenina in a series of portraits painted by dead white men.


Anna Karenina (Lady Agnew of Lochnaw by John Singer Sargent)



Alexei Karenin (Portrait of Edouard Manet by Henri Fantin-Latour)



Alexei Vronsky (Study of a Young Man by John Singer Sargent)



Konstantin Levin (Robert Louis Stevenson and His Wife by John Singer Sargent



Kitty Sch
...more
Sammy
May 29, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: d-the-bad
People are going to have to remember that this is the part of the review that is entirely of my own opinion and what I thought of the book, because what follows isn't entirely positive, but I hope it doesn't throw you off the book entirely and you still give it a chance. Now... my thoughts:

I picked up this book upon the advice of Oprah (and her book club) and my friend Kit. They owe me hardcore now. As does Mr. Tolstoy. This book was an extremely long read, not because of it's size and length ne
...more
jessica
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
goodness me, russians are dramatic. and i wouldnt have it any other way.

tolstoy is a master character creator. and although he is very skilled at conveying pre-revolution life and society, i have found much more enjoyment in his characters (shoutout to my boy, levin) than the plot. that being said, there is a certain complexity in tolstoys method of storytelling. there isnt a clear resolution in sight for most of the novel, so it left me eager to see what the characters would do and how the sto
...more
Petra-masx
What is the most important thing about Anna Karenina? Is it the first line, "Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way"? This sounds so true but it isn't really.

Is it that Anna experiences much more intolerance for her unfaithfulness and leaving her husband than does her brother who screws around like a dog? Is it Konstantin Levin's attempts to marry into the aristocracy and his problem with religion? Or is the entire story just Tolstoy's way of seducing the r
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
840. Анна Каренина = Anna Karenina = Anna Karenin, Leo Tolstoy

Anna Karenina is a novel by the Russian writer Leo Tolstoy, published in serial installments from 1873 to 1877 in the periodical The Russian Messenger.

A complex novel in eight parts, with more than a dozen major characters, it is spread over more than 800 pages (depending on the translation and publisher), typically contained in two volumes.

It deals with themes of betrayal, faith, family, marriage, Imperial Russian society, desire,
...more
Trevor
Jul 28, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1877
Not since I read The Brothers Karamazov have I felt as directly involved in characters' worlds and minds. Fascinating.
I was hooked on Anna Karenina from the opening section when I realized that Tolstoy was brilliantly portraying characters' thoughts and motivations in all of their contradictory, complex truth. However, Tolstoy's skill is not just in characterization--though he is the master of that art. His prose invokes such passion. There were parts of the book that took my breath because I re
...more
İntellecta
Tolstoy draws a portrait of three marriages or relationships that could not be more different. Anna Karenina is rightly called a masterpiece. Moreover Tolstoy does not spare on social socialism and describes the beginnings of communism, deals with such existential themes as birth and death and the meaning of life.
Tolstoy’s narrative art and his narrative charm are at the highest level. He also seems like a close observer of human passions, feelings and emotions.
All in all I was touched by his b
...more
Kevin Ansbro
"Leo Tolstoy would meet hatred expressed in violence by love expressed in self-suffering."
—Mahatma Gandhi


Through reading this praiseworthy classic, I have been forced to recalibrate my previously unreliable view of this celebrated author.
You see, I was force-fed Tolstoy at college (his writing, not his flesh, silly! Mine wasn't a college for cannibals!) and at the time only carried War and Peace under one arm so I might appear cleverer than I actually was.
So, how amazed was I that Anna K has
...more
Brina
Apr 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A few months ago I read Anna in the Tropics, a Pulitzer winning drama by Nilo Cruz. Set in 1920s Florida, a lector arrives at a cigar factory to read daily installments of Anna Karenina to the workers there. Although the play takes place in summer, the characters enjoyed their journey to Russia as they were captivated by the story. Even though it is approaching summer where I live as well, I decided to embark on my own journey through Leo Tolstoy's classic nineteenth century classic novel. Altho ...more
Brett
Apr 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Alright, I'm going to do my best not to put any spoilers out here, but it will be kind of tough with this book. I should probably start by saying that this book was possibly the best thing I have ever read.

It was my first Tolstoy to read, and the defining thing that separated what he wrote from anything else that I've read is his characters. His characters are unbelievably complex. The edition of this book that I read was over 900 pages, so he has some time to do it. His characters aren't static
...more
Greta
“All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.”

"Anna Karenina" movie 2012 by Joe Wright

"Anna Karenina" by Tolstoy is not just a tragic love story as often perceived, but much more a social commentary, told through the fade of two colliding families in the 19th. Anna Karenina has a life as the noble society expects from her. She is married to a wealthy and influencal state official and gave birth to a male heritage, but struggles with her social role until she enco
...more
David Schaafsma
Levin (which is what the title should be, since he is the main character, the real hero and the focus of the book!) (But who would read the book with that title, I know!)

If you don't want to know the ending, don't read this review, though I won't actually talk about what happens to Anna specifically, something I knew 40 years ago without even reading the book. I didn't read the book to find out what happens to her. I knew that. Probably many of you know or knew the ending before reading the book
...more
Michelle
Jan 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, classics
Everyone has their crazy reasons for reading a book. I was never really planning to read "Anna Karenina" in my lifetime at all. Alas, I saw a trailer of the 2012 film recently and it was breathtaking! Something about Keira Knightley is art. Something I cannot pinpoint as a mere mortal, but she always has the knack to make me believe that characters could live and breathe beyond the books. So why didn't I watch the full movie? For the stupid reason that I can't sit still just being a passive audi ...more
Kelly
So, I have this ongoing etiquette problem. Though sometimes I think it is a matter of respect. Or maybe social awkwardness. I’d consult my Emily Post on the issue, but it’s a unique bookworm sort of problem. I don’t think Ms. Post got that deeply into the protocol of neurotic bibliophiles.

Anyway, the question is.. why do I unconsciously call an author by their first name sometimes? In some respects, I’ve had this conversation before in the context of gender. That is, are discussants more likely
...more
Florencia
[Turn the volume up;
open me in new tab]




description

There is a well-known belief that, brimming with the romanticism of bygone days to which reason acquiesces in silence, attempts to explain the elusive nature of human relations. According to this myth, the gods get involved in our existence by using a red cord. In Japanese culture, such cord is tied around the little finger; in China, around the ankle. Be it as it may, that string binds one person to the other; people who were always destined to meet, regar
...more
Dia
Apr 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What turned out to be the most interesting to me as I devoured this lush book was Tolstoy's amazing ability to show how we change our minds, or how our minds just do change -- how enamored we become of a person, a place, a whole population, an idea, an ideal -- and then how that great love, which seemed so utterly meaningful and complete, sours or evaporates just days, hours, or even minutes later -- in short, how truly fickle we are. And at the same time, each of the characters was in some way ...more
Roy Lotz
Anna Karenina,” my friend told me, “is one of the few books that have influenced how I live my life from day to day.”

This statement touches on a question I often wonder about: Can reading great fiction make you a better person? I don’t mean to ask whether it can improve your mental agility or your knowledge of the world, for it undoubtedly does. But can these books make you kinder, wiser, more moral, more content? The answer to this question is far from self-evident. And maybe we should be do
...more
K.D. Absolutely
Dec 20, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die; Top 10 Books by Living Writers; Newsweek's Metalist 100; Oprah Book of the Month
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
NReads
May 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
One of a few classics that I loved reading. It's phenomenal.
Perry
Passing Through the Human Passions
"...Let him first cast a stone at her"



I read this Tolstoy masterpiece for the first time 7 years ago, coming to it with a cynicism formed by my mistaken impression that it was simply about Anna Karenina's terminal adulterous affair and her despicable selfishness toward her son. I thought the novel would, no doubt, effectively demonstrate the tragic consequences of self-centeredness and the absence of a moral compass. Beyond that, I was a cynic.

My skepticism was
...more
Elyse  Walters
Jan 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Audiobook.....read by Maggie Gyllenhaal..
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Kimber Silver
"I think... if it is true that there are as many minds as there are heads, then there are as many kinds of love as there are hearts."
― Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

As I drew back the cover and stepped into the world of the Russian aristocracy, I found myself entranced by the excess and proper etiquette. A realm of high society so foreign, so inviting, that I couldn’t turn away. My eyes devoured Tolstoy’s delicious words like the sweetest candy. The characters called me in, seating me in the fr
...more
Piyangie
"Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way."

This opening sentence sums up the main theme of this great work: family relationships. Tolstoy has chosen three families to work on the different aspects of this theme. The first family is that of Anna and the second family is that of Levin and Kitty. The third and a little less prominent than the other two is the family of Dolly and Stepan.

Anna's story, for which the book is well known and loved, occupies a great
...more
Jenn(ifer)
Read the end of Anna Karenina and listen to this song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4mUmdR...

It’ll break your heart.

When I first completed this book, I sat down at my computer and attempted to review it, and all I could come up with was,

“F*ck you, Tolstoy!!”

I know that sounds juvenile, but I still have that feeling. I’m so ANGRY with him for what he did to Anna. I’m so angry that we were barely given a chance to know her. (Yes, I'm aware that she's a fictional character who never actually ex
...more
Helene Jeppesen
Nov 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book for the first time about 5 years ago and I loved it back then. I picked it up again last week and was very curious to see if it would still be amongst my favourite classics. Now that I have finished it, I can say with confidence that it is!
One of the things that appeals to me the most about this amazing - however huge - classic is the fact that it deals with such a large variety of emotions, and as a reader you feel like you are on a rollercoaster. Love, despair, doubt, jealous
...more
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Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy (Russian: Лев Николаевич Толстой; commonly Leo Tolstoy in Anglophone countries) was a Russian writer who primarily wrote novels and short stories. Later in life, he also wrote plays and essays. His two most famous works, the novels War and Peace and Anna Karenina, are acknowledged as two of the greatest novels of all time and a pinnacle of realist fiction. Many consider To ...more

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