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The Brothers Karamazov

(The Brothers Karamazov #1-4)

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  232,578 ratings  ·  10,463 reviews
The Brothers Karamasov is a murder mystery, a courtroom drama, and an exploration of erotic rivalry in a series of triangular love affairs involving the “wicked and sentimental” Fyodor Pavlovich Karamazov and his three sons―the impulsive and sensual Dmitri; the coldly rational Ivan; and the healthy, red-cheeked young novice Alyosha. Through the gripping events of their sto ...more
Paperback, 796 pages
Published June 14th 2002 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (first published November 18th 1879)
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Utkarsh Detha While it is true that Smerdyakov chose wrong means and lacked the virtues one is expected to have (courage, honesty etc.) he was in no way inferior to…moreWhile it is true that Smerdyakov chose wrong means and lacked the virtues one is expected to have (courage, honesty etc.) he was in no way inferior to Ivan in intellect. I think the reason behind this were the unjust norms of the society. Unlike Ivan, Smerdyakov the bastard had to live like a servant. He had no filial rights whatsoever. He wanted to pursue his own dreams but for that he had no support from anyone. Even though Fyodor Karamazov was the worst a father could be, his legitimate sons enjoyed certain privileges that Smerdyakov did not. These privileges came with their name. This was the main reason (as far as I could understand) why Smerdyakov devoted his intellect to petty issues, like manipulating others etc to achieve what he wanted (He dreamed of moving to France). Ivan on the other hand could afford to spend his intellectual resources on 'lofty' issues like the existence of god, etc. Smerdyakov was nearly as capable as Ivan, if not more. He was just deprived of the luxuries (to him, they were luxuries) that the name Karamazov gave to Ivan.

He was able to manipulate Ivan, implant ideas in the minds of everyone and most remarkably the Prosecutor's mind ( the Defense lawyer, Fetyukovich was able to see through his deception and considered him to be a very clever man). This corroborates his superior intellect.(less)
Brendan Caulfield I think you're coming at it the wrong way. This isn't meant to be light reading; It's heavy-duty philosophy cloaked as a novel.

Each character is a per…more
I think you're coming at it the wrong way. This isn't meant to be light reading; It's heavy-duty philosophy cloaked as a novel.

Each character is a personification of an argument that duke it out in various ways throughout the book.

I found it to be one of the most pure insights into the human condition that I have ever read (besides Dostoyevsky's other books...) You might appreciate it more if you approach it in that light.

It also might not be what you're interested in which is fine too.(less)

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Rawley
Sep 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
If there was still any doubt, let me confirm that this actually is the greatest book ever written. But be warned that you need to set aside a solid month to get through it. And it's not light reading--this is a dense work of philosophy disguised as a simple murder mystery. But it's well worth the effort. It tackles the fundamental question of human existence--how best to live one's life--in a truly engaging way. Dostoevsky created 3 brothers (Ivan, Alexei, and Dmitri) with opposite answers to th ...more
Jeffrey Keeten
Nov 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: the-russians
 photo Dostoevsky.jpg

If you like your books to move in a linear fashion this book is not for you. It hops around and attention must be paid or you will find yourself flipping back a few pages to reestablish the thread of the story. I took this on a plane flight, crazy right? Not exactly the normal "light" reading I take on flights. It was a stroke of genius. I absolutely fell under the thrall of Dostoyevky's prose. (Thank you to my fellow travelers who didn't feel the need to chat with the guy who obviously is s
...more
Michael
Oct 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I'm writing this review as I read. Frankly, I'm astounded by how good this is and how compelling I'm finding it. Astounded? Why should that be? This is a classic, after all. True, but it breaks just about every "rule" of fiction. The plot so far is virtually nonexistent: three brothers get together with their wastrel father and all sorts of dysfunction, including an odd love triangle involving the father and the eldest son, are revealed. The brothers aren't particular close to each other, and re ...more
Lisa
“Hurrah for Karamazov!”

Those are the concluding words of this bombastic brick of a book. I am more than willing to chime in, to cheer for the brothers Karamazov who finally, finally made me give in to the genius of Dostoevsky fully, without anger, without resentment and fight, after a year of grappling with his earlier novels.

This is doubtless his magnum opus, the shining lead star in a brilliant cosmos. There are many similarities to his earlier novels, and his characters fight with the same i
...more
Conrad
Mar 24, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Contrary to widespread rumor, this is a far from bleak book. While every character has his or her own misery, and it all takes place in a place called something like "cattle-roundup-ville", the moments of religious ecstasy and moral clarity are heartbreaking in their frequency - it's hard not to wish that one had such bizarre events going on around one in order to prompt such lofty oratory.

The story involves Ivan, Dmitri, Alyosha, and Smerdyakov, four brothers with a rich but notoriously lechero
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
837. Bratia Karamazovy = The Karamazov brothers‬,Fyodor Dostoevsky
Abstract: The Brothers Karamazov is a passionate philosophical novel set in 19th century of Russia that enters deeply into the ethical debates of God, free will, and morality. It is a spiritual drama of moral struggles concerning faith, doubt, and reason, set against a modernizing Russia.
Characters: Dmitri Fyodorovich Karamazov, Ivan Fyodorovich Karamazov, Alexei Fyodorovich Karamazov, Pavel Smerdyakov, Agrafena Alexandrovna Svet
...more
Florencia
Above all, avoid lies, all lies, especially the lie to yourself. Keep watch on your own lie and examine it every hour, every minute. And avoid contempt, both of others and of yourself: what seems bad to you in yourself is purified by the very fact that you have noticed it in yourself. And avoid fear, though fear is simply the consequence of every lie. (57)

Family. You cannot pick. You are either happy to be around them or you are stuck with them. You can choose your friends, a pet, you can choos
...more
Seemita
I finished reading this book at precisely 0205 hours today. The night still lay majestically over the impending dawn, and in its blackened stillness, swayed the echoes of this imperious book. The walls of my room, at once, turned into a fortress for Dostoevsky’s army of thoughts, and I, right in the middle of it, found myself besieged with its diverse, haphazard but mighty blizzard.

I am no stranger to this rambling Russian’s precocious visions and forbearance and yet, and yet, this work, swells
...more
Riku Sayuj
Feb 04, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Riku by: english teacher in seventh grade!

On Romancing The Devil

Warning: This review might contain spoilers even outside the hidden 'spoiler alert' regions. I honestly am not capable of discriminating.


The book is not about the murder or about who did it, those things were very apparent before half the book was completed - the narrator taking special pains to spoil all suspense for his readers at the very beginning (harkening back to the days of greek drama and Euripides - according to whom, the effect of a story, even a whodunnit, w
...more
Kenny
“Above all, don't lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.”
Fyodor Dostoevsky ~~ The Brothers Karamazov


1

This was my introduction to Russian Literature at the age of 14. I remember buying this at a flea market one weekend for $0.50, & feeling very adult since I would be reading a "Russian Novel
...more
Michelle
Feb 11, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
“The Brothers Karamazov” has intrigued me for years. I have always been aware of the fact that it is one of the greatest novels ever written so I know I have to read it eventually. Finally, after reading it, I think I get why this is considered great literature-- and though I can't exactly say that I loved it, I admit that I don’t regret reading it.

The plot revolves around the murder of perhaps one of the most despicable characters ever created, Fyodor Pavlovich Karamazov, the father of the Kar
...more
Warwick
Dec 15, 2018 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Sometimes I feel like modern covers have gone too far.
Samra Yusuf
Sep 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Russian novels always get better of me, I am left battered both body and mind. But the exhaustion is like the exhaustion of sex (can’t find more fitting analogy) breathless and full of life at the same. Like the traveler who was long gone on a journey and on his return, bathes for a long good hour, taking good care of every little pore of body, soaping himself as he sinks in tub very slowly, and as water pours over him he shuts his eyes and with numbing senses recalls everything in an episodic m ...more
Vit Babenco
Sep 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Brothers Karamazov is the greatest novel… The Brothers Karamazov is the greatest grotesque novel. And I’m afraid my interpretations of it will hardly be popular.
What is God? What is man? And what are their relationships?
“You see, I close my eyes and think: if everyone has faith, where does it come from? And then they say that it all came originally from fear of the awesome phenomena of nature, and that there is nothing to it at all. What? I think, all my life I’ve believed, then I die, and s
...more
Ben
Someone: Helloooo… yoo-hoo…. Fucktard, you there?

Ben: Yes, I'm here... I finished The Brothers Karamazov the other night and I'm a bit blown away. Emotionally exhausted. Right now, it has me sitting here thinking about it, feeling all kinds of things, thinking complex, important thoughts....

Someone: The great Fyodor Dostoevsky should do that to you. He's a literary Giant; one of the all time greats. But you see, knowing you, shitfuck, I'm not surprised you gave it five stars. You give everythi
...more
Sara
I will generally finish a novel no matter what...but I could not push through this one. I have tried twice, so I suppose this is going to be a novel that doesn't ever make it to my "read" list.

UPDATE: It took me three starts and an unusual amount of determination to finish this novel. I was inches away from abandoning it for good and all. I am glad I didn’t, but believe me when I say I hope I never encounter a book this hard to endure again in my reading lifetime.

The themes Dostoevsky tackles al
...more
Piyangie
I found this book to be one of the most challenging books to review. And if I consider myself capable of such a venture, it will still take pages to write a proper review that would do justice to the book; so my attempt here is just to pen how I felt about the book.

I have heard that The Karamazov Brothers is the best work of Dostoyevsky. While it may be premature for me to comment on such a theory having only read one other short book of his, I do understand why it is thus praised. It is a book
...more
Michael Finocchiaro
I have read this book three or four times in both English and French translations. In English, grab the Volonhovsky one. I cannot even begin to describe how awesome this book is. If for no other reason than Ivan's two chapters and especially for the Grand Inquisitor, this book is clearly in the upper reaches of the greatest literature ever written in any language. The range of personalities, emotions, and reactions of the various characters - all so fully developed and realistic in that specific ...more
Jan-Maat
Once a upon a time there were three brothers (view spoiler), Dmitri, Ivan and Alexei, who went forth into the world each bearing a legacy from their parents. Along their way they each use the gifts they have to deal with the problems that lie in their path. First Dmitri, the eldest brother who is strong and powerful, falls by the wayside and then Ivan, the middle brother who is clever and educated falls by the wayside, but Alexei, littl ...more
Gabrielle
“Until one has indeed become the brother of all, there will be no brotherhood.”

What is it about snowy weekends that gives me the urge to dive into big, fat Russian novels? I definitely enjoy sipping hot chocolate and occasionally looking up from the book and out the window to look at the snow covering everything like a thick layer of icing – and then diving back into stories set in a similar landscape. The forecast called for thirty-five centimetres of snow, so I thought the timing was perfect t
...more
Dolors
Apr 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those in need of spiritual cleansing
Dark abysses in moonless skies will engulf the titillating brightness of stars and ghastly winters will obliterate the warmth of the earth until justice has been done.
Recline comfortably in your velvety chaise longue and concentrate on the spectacle that is about to begin, for the so much awaited day of the trial has arrived and the Karamazov family will be submitted to relentless interrogation, psychological scrutiny and the righteous proof of circumstantial evidence. There is humor, melodrama
...more
Gillian
Sep 30, 2007 marked it as to-read
i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. i will finish this book. ...more
Ellen
Jan 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: novels, favorites
description

“I am big; it’s the pictures that got small”

In Considering the Lobster, David Foster Wallace observes that the “thing about Dostoevsky’s characters is that they are alive" (264). They are, in fact, larger than life, and Wallace goes on to bemoan the fact that so many “of the novelists of our own place and time look so thematically shallow and lightweight…in comparison to Gogol or Dostoevsky” (271). Like Norma Desmond, who feels the pictures have gotten small, Wallace sees contemporary novels lac
...more
William2
Second reading inspired by (1) Albert Camus's The Rebel: An Essay on Man in Revolt, wherein the patricidal justifications of Ivan Fyodorovich Karamazov are considered at length; and (2) the Mount Athos Journal, which closes out The Broken Road: From the Iron Gates to Mount Athos, the last volume of Patrick Leigh Fermor's Danube Trilogy. The journal recounts PLF's visits to the many Greek Orthodox monasteries on the peninsula in Jan-Feb 1935. ...more
Cheryl
Jan 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Cheryl by: The Fyodor Dostoevsky Group
Ask me what book has now transformed my thought about what literature can do and I will name this book. Ask me about a book whose characters I will reference for years—not because they were so relatable or lovable but because they were replacements of philosophical thought—and I will name Alyosha, Ivan, and Mitya. Ask me about an author whose works I won’t mind reading and rereading, and I will name Fyodor Dostoevsky.

To think, before reading this, I didn’t even know how to properly pronounce the
...more
Karina
Mar 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was a literary masterpiece. I cannot describe the book as I read it. I feel like I would not give it the justice it deserves. I would somehow ruin the the greatness of the characters and the whole meaning of the story.

I will just give you a gist of what it is. It surrounds three brothers named Karamazov with the same father. It is read with each his own story and suddenly they collide in the wake of their despicable father's murder. It questions our deepest moral concerns. The origin
...more
Rachel
Nov 09, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone!
Shelves: fiction
This is a review both of the book and the translation. See my review of Crime and Punishment for an explanation of why I don't entirely like this translation -- the authors sacrifice clarity and readability for technical accuracy in a way that tends to obscure the meaning. That said, though, it's a very good one, and I'd give it a four out of five. My pet peeve in most translations is the choice of the word "meek" instead of "gentle". These have utterly different connotations in modern English, ...more
Alex
Sep 29, 2011 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: masochists
Brothers Karamazov is an exceptionally tricky and intricate book. It's also an exceptional pain in the ass. I might have to create a new shelf for it called "I'd Have To Read It Again To Get It But I'd Rather Just Not Get It." Tristram Shandy can join it there. The first problem is when a speech is so long that it reminds you of Atlas Shrugged. The second problem is that when I finished it just now, the words that unconsciously escaped my mouth were, "Well, fuck you Karamazov."

Here's a game I ma
...more
Paula W
May 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I started this book a month ago, my initial thought was that the characters were fantastic. Then things got slow, and then they got slower. Still, I trudged on. This was my Moby Dick; this was my War and Peace. Almost 900 pages? I was determined to get through it.

All of a sudden, things started making sense at about the halfway point. Allow me to explain.

I have for many years thought that I must be an adopted child. You guys, my family is crazy. I don't mean the fun kind of hahaha crazy, e
...more
Chris_P
Wait a sec...
Fuck the five stars!
★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★★
It actually hurts to give it only five. Need I say that this book must be considered one of the wonders of mankind? Would it be necessary to talk about Dostoyevsky's extraordinary ability to create such interesting and realistic characters, or the fact that he was a master of the human psyche? This, of course, is an understatement. Check Ivan Karamazov's encounter with the devil if you don't believe me. In fact, the whole
...more
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Were the khoklakovs the "two lady's" that Alexei lived with before coming to town? 1 1 23 hours, 15 min ago  
Pick-a-Shelf: The Brothers Karamazov (April) 35 18 May 20, 2020 06:14PM  
Which brother was your favourite? 6 144 Apr 28, 2020 04:42PM  
In Search of Meaning: Have you read The Brother's Karamazov? 2 27 Apr 19, 2020 05:51PM  
Final chapter 1 8 Apr 06, 2020 07:14PM  
Goodreads România: 1001:Fratii Karamazov - Dostoievski (5⭐ din 3✔) 10 81 Nov 24, 2019 07:25AM  

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Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky was born in Moscow in 1821. His debut, the epistolary novella Poor Folk (1846), made his name. In 1849 he was arrested for involvement with the politically subversive 'Petrashevsky circle' and until 1854 he lived in a convict prison in Omsk, Siberia. From this experience came The House of the Dead (1860-2). In 1860 he began the journal Vremya (Time). Already married, ...more

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The Brothers Karamazov (4 books)
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  • الأخوة كارامازوف #2
  • الأخوة كارامازوف #3
  • الإخوة كارامازوف #4

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“Above all, don't lie to yourself. The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.” 8845 likes
“What is hell? I maintain that it is the suffering of being unable to love.” 4346 likes
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