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O Jogador

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  44,602 ratings  ·  2,182 reviews
Unter den späten Erzählungen und kürzeren Romanen, die in diesem Buch zusammengestellt sind, ist natürlich "Der Spieler" von besonderem Interesse, hat doch Dostojewski lange mit seiner Spielsucht kämpfen müssen und mehrfach hohe und höchste Beträge verloren, vor allem in den Spielbanken von Wiesbaden und Baden-Baden. Die hier versammelten Romane und Novellen werden als die ...more
Published (first published March 10th 1866)
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Breslin White Not bad at all, but note that this is a novella. It's not the novel-length books he wrote. I personally believe Uncle's Dream is the best novella…moreNot bad at all, but note that this is a novella. It's not the novel-length books he wrote. I personally believe Uncle's Dream is the best novella introduction to Fyodor Dostoyevsky.(less)
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3.88  · 
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Ahmad Sharabiani
Igrok (Игрок) = The Gambler = Le Joueur, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
The Gambler (Russian: Игрок, Igrok) is a short novel by Fyodor Dostoyevsky about a young tutor in the employment of a formerly wealthy Russian general. The novella reflects Dostoyevsky's own addiction to roulette, which was in more ways than one the inspiration for the book: Dostoyevsky completed the novella under a strict deadline to pay off gambling debts.
The first-person narrative is told from the point of view of Alexei Ivanovich, a
Can I possibly not understand myself that I’m a lost man? But—why can’t I resurrect? (141)

It is not just the extraordinary psychological depth of the characters nor the engaging story that masterfully manages the element of surprise. This novella had a great impact on me for the simple reason that whenever I read certain passages, I saw him. His obsessions, his fears, his passion for a distant woman, his despair. Dostoyevsky was there, trying to survive.

Alexei Ivanovich is a 25 year-old tutor th
Jul 17, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not one of his greater works, but one that reveals his adept ability at multi-layered characterization.

The story behind the story is almost as interesting - he had to write this on a tight schedule because of his own gambling debts. Always an introspective narrator, with subtle empathy for an imperfect hero (Raskolnikov) Dostoyevsky here was able to describe the feelings, anxiety, and drives of a gambling addict.


4.0 stars. Fyodor Dostoevsky is a phenomenal writer and an icon of Russian literature. In this story, he has once again written a novel comprised of superb prose, unique characters and some very insightful comments about the human condition. For that, this novel deserves nothing less than 4 stars.

HOWEVER, as a native of Las Vegas who has just recently been given the opportunity to read this book after the lifting of the 100 year ban imposed by the State of Nevada on public dissemination of thi
Jan 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You can be seized in an instant by the forces of addiction and obsession. It happened to Dostoyevsky - he became addicted to gambling after one impulsive stop at a roulette table - and it took place while he already was in the grip of an obsession. The object of his obsession: the beautiful Apollinaria Suslova, one of his students and 20 years his junior.

This femme fatale appears in various forms in many of Dostoyevsky's novels. In The Gambler she is Polina Alexandrovna. He's in there too, as
David Schaafsma
Not one of Dostoevsky’s greatest works, The Gambler was written fast, for cash, as he had gambling debts, so he knew what he was talking about in this one! It is not the most developed of his works (and I may be somewhat influenced by the stuffy translation, and hearing it read via audiotape), but there are moments in it that are still great. My greatest attraction to it is the autobiographical aspect, that Dostoevsky was drawn to gambling, and brought to the brink of ruin again and again by it. ...more
Henry Avila
Gambling addiction, the great writer Fyodor Dostoyevsky knew too well about this affliction, he had to write this short novel very quickly, in order to pay for the debts acquired as a result... Our story begins in 1866, with passionate Alexei Ivanovich (The Gambler) , an unhappy tutor to retired Russian General Sagorjanski's two young children, the formerly rich soldier squandered it all, to much high living and reckless spending, no matter how wealthy a person is, when the money flows out faste ...more
Luís C.
The small black ball rolls, rolls, makes small goat jumps before stopping in a hut. Those who are around, who follow his farandole, hold their breath and perhaps close their eyes so as not to see. All are subject to this "chance". Will they lose or to win ? To lose and win again or turn your back and go? Dostoyevsky tells one of his protagonists that it takes courage to turn his heels and run away from the table. Alexei Ivanovich, in spite of all his promises, ended up turning, like Lot's wife. ...more
Mar 18, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: russian-lit
On the second reading I'm forced to change my entire opinion on this book. This was my introduction to Dostoevsky. I didn't know at first what to expect. Unfortunately, I read that this is not one of the best works by him. All must have influenced my perspective on the book. But after falling in love with Dostoevsky, I wanted to revisit the book to see if I had done justice to it. On this revisit, I realized that I have not done enough justice to the book.

It is an interesting story. It talks ab
MJ Nicholls
The William Tell Overture: An Alphabetical Anecdote. a) I used to live in student accommodation in the city of Edinburgh, sometimes dubbed “city of literature,” despite more people buying DVDs than books per annum. b) I spent my days in a box room writing mediocre essays about Austen and Dickens. c) In my spare time, I wrote appalling 900-page tracts about sexual frustration. I used self-deprecating humour to make life seem less terrible. d) This technique doesn’t have the same efficacy in my mi ...more
Mar 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve never been an addict to anything – at least anything harmful. But I might have been one if I were in the right place to be an addict of something. I might have been an addict of drugs; as I know myself I have never felt that I should care so much to be healthy - especially when I was younger. I’ve never been a drug addict simply because I never had drugs around myself. My surroundings, my circles of social friends were always drug-free.

I have also never been a gambler and at this time – be
Melania 🍒
Feb 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good book, for sure, but too short, I believe.
This is my second Dostoyevsky read and certainly not the last. I feel that my relation with Russian literature is going to be long and fruitful .
I am not a gambler, so why am I reading a book about people obsessed with gambling? To understand those people, how they think, to see if I can understand their obsession, at least to feel this obsession. Furthermore I was interested in this book because it is partially autobiographical. Dostoyevsky was obsessed by gambling and he too was obsessed by a woman - Apollinaria Suslova. The book is based on his own addiction to gambling while he was in love with Apollinaria Suslova. The central theme ...more
Meredith Holley
Just after I read this book, I watched the movie Alex and Emma, in which Luke Wilson writes a book that plagiarizes this story. It made me very uncomfortable. As far as I know (and I watched pretty carefully) the movie did not cite Dostoyevsky at any point. It also made me feel weird about myself that I am a person who would read a novella by Dostoyevsky (because I just can't get enough) and then go watch a pretty lame romantic comedy with Luke Wilson and Kate Hudson because it sounded like a go ...more
Feb 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh Russian literature, how I love thee!
Dec 27, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011, kindle-free
This was a fun, short novel. Dostoevsky drops the reader into the middle of the story with no introduction to the characters; names are used and you have to figure out who the characters are and how they're related to each other as you read. For this reason it took me a few pages to "get into" the story because I was terribly confused about what was happening. However, once I had a handle on the characters and setting, it quickly became a humorous and enjoyable read. In fact, I enjoyed it so muc ...more
Dec 03, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mãe, clássicos, russos
(review in English below)

Que desilusão!...

Depois de ter sido arrebatada por Crime e Castigo, esta leitura foi um autêntico balde de água fria. Logo no início, senti-me atirada para o meio duma situação que não compreendia, com personagens cujas relações entre si me pareciam estranhas.

Depois, quando as coisas começaram a encaixar, percebi que eram todos doidos, ou pelo menos bipolares. A história não me despertava qualquer interesse e só animou um pouco com a chegada da avó, com a sua própria dos
Rebecca McNutt
A short but compelling classic, The Gambler is well-written, insightful and incredibly interesting as a story.
The Gambler is populated by a cast a very colorful characters. There is the narrator Alexei, who is tutor to the children of a Russian General who is traveling Western Europe, the General, who is massively in debt to a Frenchman and hopelessly smitten with a French woman, Polina, the General's step-daughter and whom Alexei has an unhealthy attraction to, the Frenchman de Griers whom the General is massively in debt to, and many others.

In a way this cast reminded me of Seinfeld. None of the peopl
Feb 13, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars.

Well, it's much better than Crime & Punishment, that's for sure. I'm still not blown away by Dostoyevsky's writing style, but the first impression is definitely improved. I'll probably read more of his works in the future, like The Idiot which is on my TBR list. Good thing is I don't dislike his books like I used to.

Alexei Ivanovich is an intelligent tutor who is working for a Russian family whose patriarch is known as The General. Through his attraction to Polina, a stepdaughter
May 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone, especially those who have gambled
Recommended to Junta by: Other Dostoyevsky books
The (Online Sports) Gambler

Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.

January 22, 2016
Alexei Chabonovich joined the popular betting site, The Australian Open for tennis was being held, and he decided to try his luck at betting on sports, something he had taken an interest in recently after hearing some friends' stories about their betting successes and anecdotes. In registration, he referred a friend who was already a site member,
Feb 24, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: classics fans
Shelves: classics
The Gambler is my favourite Dostoyevsky so far. It has a solid story that leads to the outmost disaster of its main character. All in all, the book is a vivid representation of the fall of the character, of the gambling addiction and the society of the time. As it's quite small, it's easy to read, lighter than other Dostoyevshy books for sure and nicely written. So, I highly reccomend this one to anyone who wants to read Dostoyevsky but finds it hard to do so.
Feb 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Gambler is a brilliant compulsive book much like the content. And it's exploration into the psychology of a gambler and that of men in love is brilliant (to some extent women too - though it remains inexplicable)!

Alexei Ivanovich is a tutor to a Russian General's family and hopelessly in love with Polina Aleksandrovna, the niece. The hopelessness stems from the seemingly cruel Polina, her indecisiveness and attention showered on her by the benevolent Frenchman (not to mention an honourable
Marina (Sonnenbarke)
I'm not sure I really understood this book, but I found the characters to be great (especially the Grandmother!) and the insight in their psychology and their way of thinking/acting absolutely wonderful - as is always the case with Dostoyevsky. However, I think this is the "weakest" book by him I've read so far, although as a matter of fact it's hard to say a novel by Dostoyevsky can actually be weak.

I read this book in English because I found a free translation on Project Gutenberg. It's true t
Dec 25, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013
This is a crushing novel. It is one of those classic stories where the narrator is crushed by the weight of his desire, by the gravity of odds, and by the frailty of human hope. Within Dostoevsky's short novel there exists an almost existential subtext, an underlying risk of ruin; where the longer you live, the greater your chance of losing everything. Dostoevsky leaves the reader with small wins, decent runs, and hopeful conceits that tempt the reader to believe that one might walk away from li ...more
Jun 28, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What an artist and what a psychologist!

Dostoyevsky's Fiction reveals the truth that reality obscures to say the least about the master.
Jul 12, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels, russian
I curse the Mickey Mouse Law, which is the reason why publishers continue to insult us with bad translations. Who could trust a translator who cannot even express herself well in her own native language? Here is an example of Constance Garnett in action. Page 57:

"A Frenchman is not often naturally polite. He is always polite, as it were, to order, with a motive."

And here is a more coherent translation by Pevear and Volokhonsky. Page 217:

"A Frenchman is rarely amiable by nature; he is always a
May 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I remember watching the movie "The Great Beauty" by Paolo Sorrentino and hearing Jep Gambardella mentioning "The Gambler" to an eastern European woman. Well, that's when I decided to read this short story, from Gambardella, an unusual made-up character from an Italian movie.
Dostoyevsky himself was a Gambler, just like the fictional character from this story, Alexei Ivanovich. Ivanovich, the Protagonist and fellow narrator, lives his life on the edge. He's a dedicated Casino player who gambles fo
Oct 31, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dostoyevsky’s short novel based on his own experiences at gambling and the desperate financial straits that made him write it to pay off his debts, is indeed a minor masterpiece often dwarfed by his larger works.

You meet a lot of weak people, hooked on a non-ingestable drug, gambling, people whose moral conduct is governed by money, or the lack of it, or the desperate need for more of it, and who don’t give two hoots at throwing it all away for the possibility of winning more.

Protagonist Alexei
Dec 22, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story powerfully describes the game-table hunger of its narrator and the mania of gambling. Not surprisingly, it equates this maniacal appetite quite successfully with sexual obsession. I'm not a gambler myself, but I found the descriptions of nights spent at the roulette table riveting. This is Dostoyevsky at his most raw and least philosophical. He makes no attempt at a sweeping tale with allegories and theology, in fact here he's almost reportorial in slavish attention to the psychologic ...more
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Fyodor Mikhaylovich Dostoyevsky (Russian: Фёдор Михайлович Достоевский), sometimes transliterated Dostoevsky, was a Russian novelist, journalist, and short-story writer whose psychological penetration into the human psyche had a profound influence on the 20th century novel.

Dostoyevsky was the second son of a former army doctor. He was educated at home and at a private school. Shortly after the dea
“People really do like seeing their best friends humiliated; a large part of the friendship is based on humiliation; and that is an old truth,well known to all intelligent people.” 99 likes
“I wanted to fathom her secrets; I wanted her to come to me and say: "I love you," and if not that, if that was senseless insanity, then...well, what was there to care about? Did I know what I wanted? I was like one demented: all I wanted was to be near her, in the halo of her glory, in her radiance, always, for ever, all my life. I knew nothing more!” 40 likes
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