I picked up this book by impulse when abroad. I hadn't before heard of this title, yet am fond of novellas, and regard Dostoyevsky's writing highly. SI picked up this book by impulse when abroad. I hadn't before heard of this title, yet am fond of novellas, and regard Dostoyevsky's writing highly. Some of his larger novels can be difficult at parts to follow - peculiar character names, nicknames and writing style. This is one of his more comprehensive reads, not lacking in his characteristic analysis yet not as difficult to follow.
This particular story focuses primarily on the complex dynamics between two former friends Velchaninov, and Trusotsky, reacquainted several years later after the death of Trusotsky's wife. The plot revolves around the fact that Velchaninov had an affair with her some years earlier. The story looks at how the two men engage with each other - their conversations, feelings, thoughts and interactions.
How do each receive each other? Does Trusotsky even know? As the story develops, it engages the reader well and is definitely not predictable. There were parts where I wondered where he was going with the storyline, even where it seemed to drag on. I can't say that the plot itself was strikingly memorable as are other notable stories in as many pages. Yet strangely, even the trivial parts when taken with the cocktail of characters, leave a thoughtful aftertaste.
Rather - it is the complexity, the character depth and unpredictability of human emotion and behaviour that Dostoevsky again does not fail in. Even when not much seems to be happening, you are wondering about the characters themselves. No doubt, the deep understanding and ability to convey complex human behaviour and emotions is a Dostoevsky signature. It is what makes many of his books timeless.This is no exception, and makes a good starting point for a book among his many that will make you reflect.
Dostoevsky deciphers characters as if you know them. Or, in some more worrying instances, you begin to see yourself in them....more
I stumbled upon this book almost by chance. Every now and again I will browse the Kindle store for some classic fiction. Before coming across it myselI stumbled upon this book almost by chance. Every now and again I will browse the Kindle store for some classic fiction. Before coming across it myself, I hadn't heard of it. Yet I am glad I did.
It starts off with disorder in a classroom. A young girl by the name of Ida Starr announcing: "I did it, Miss Rutherford. I have killed Harriet. I, and nobody else." Usually stories can take a while to capture the reader. However, from the first few pages I wanted to know what had happened. As a literary piece, the writing is not my preferred style. The story itself, and the way it developed, I found engaging.
After a few chapters, I wondered how I would come to finish the book. Yet all my spare time over a few days I ended up reading away. The story itself, had a few key characters and their transition to adult life. The detailing of the characters, their lives and upbringings and their chemistry was greatly structured. It contained various themes such as purity, malice, love, death, religion and friendship. It is an original story and one I personally enjoyed.
Kindle books, and the array of freebies and cheap classics. What a great time to be living, eh?...more
Now, this book may not be for all. I write as a self-proclaimed failed writer.. this book surprised me and my ignorant, conceited, counterfeit pen.
ThNow, this book may not be for all. I write as a self-proclaimed failed writer.. this book surprised me and my ignorant, conceited, counterfeit pen.
Thank God I am well beyond the years of being assessed on the English language. I read it anxiously - another term I had long forgotten, another technique my eyes overlooked in various texts. More importantly, the realisation that while many pieces may sound good that we write almost accidentally - we unknowingly neglect the formula that makes them resonate so well.
On starting, I thought to myself this would just be another book that I would only get so far into before leaving it in the dreaded 'will probably never finish' pile. Yet somehow, it avoided its anticipated fate - for that alone, his work is encouraging. Encouraging me to re-visit the very framework and techniques of bringing life to literary imaginations. It must be good because it managed to override my stubborn, concentration-dodging procrastination for long enough to consider delving further into this for future reference.
What was particularly striking is the structure, the examples, and how he himself has written this in an engaging, amusing and very cleverly thought out manner. Evidently he is a man who has done his research. As he put brilliantly in his own words: 'It is as though we had decided to forget about structural engineering, and instead build our buildings by chance'
If you like language, if you like learning, if you like to write or if you like to read....this is definitely a book worth its time....more
From the title, this short story collection draws intrigue. As with some other reviews, this book is definitely more along the 4.5 than 4 rating.
AnthoFrom the title, this short story collection draws intrigue. As with some other reviews, this book is definitely more along the 4.5 than 4 rating.
Anthony Anaxagorou has an awe-worthy grasp on words. He often strings them together effortlessly with storytelling that paints vivid pictures and deep descriptions that stretch the imagination. In events that may otherwise seem trivial, his method of breaking down each characters story, their thoughts, the significance of even the smaller things does make this captivating. Though at times I find the loosely linked connections between the short stories can be confusing, it is an added layer of depth to the fascinating elements of his writing style.
If you appreciate short stories, this is definitely a recommended read....more