AUTHOR- LEO TOLSTOY
PUBLISHED IN- 1877
It has been a long while since I last wrote it seems. I couldn’t help it. I was in a transitory period of my life. Things were unsettling, they still are but I can’t always let life win, now can I? That said, I have been reading this book since the past two months. There are a couple of factors owing to what took me so long. Before this, I also tried reading The Rook by Daniel O’Malley but I left it midway and simply watched it’s adapted series. It was a painful read and also that I am tired of YA books like that.
So, Tolstoy! I wouldn’t be saying much about this book because I really don’t have anything to say. Well, the story is about Anna who is married and has an eight year old son but falls in love with Vronksy, a wealthy military officer. More or less, the book goes through the lives of several characters and how the extra marital affair affects them all. Set in Russian backdrop in the nineteenth century, both Anna and Vronksy get to deal with themselves when they are no longer recognized in the society as people worth socializing with. Anna eventually jumps in front of a train and kills herself when she’s unable to comprehend where she belongs to anymore.
There was this thing in the book where at one point both Anna and Vronksy thought that they just need each and that would be enough for them. And when that happens, they begin to get sick of each other and try to socialize with others which they aren’t able to do because they are no longer accepted in the society. I found this rather interesting. We, humans just never learn. We always think that there’s this particular goal and after that we’ll be at peace. Really? What peace? Once we achieve the goal, there’s a new one. It’s never enough for us. We just love running on the hamster wheel. Just running, over and over until we exhaust ourselves completely and pass out. It’s just sad.
The thing about the way the book was written was that it felt like I was living the life of the characters myself. Or maybe I feel like that because I had been stuck with this book for so long. But I can see why this book such such praises for itself. It is because the book discovers human emotions perfectly. The transition from one emotion to next and the factors governing it, it’s just so brilliantly written. That said, I certainly try to read War and peace sometime around, just not right now. I have decided to take a break from classics for a while. The main thing is that I don’t have the time that they demand and they don’t deserve a superficial reading either. I guess I will just take it easy with other books for a while.
And the beloved quotations…
“He stepped down, trying not to look long at her, as if she were the sun, yet he saw her, like the sun, even without looking.”
“Rummaging in our souls, we often dig up something that ought to have lain there unnoticed.”
“If you love me as you say you do,’ she whispered, ‘make it so that I am at peace.”
“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.”