Classics, Fiction, Historic Fiction
Richard Pevear, Larissa Volokhonsky
May 18, 2022 December 14, 2022
Chunkster Reading, The Backlist Reader
War and Peace centers broadly on Napoleon’s invasion of Russia in 1812 and follows three of the best-known characters in literature: Pierre Bezukhov, the illegitimate son of a count who is fighting for his inheritance and yearning for spiritual fulfilment; Prince Andrei Bolkonsky, who leaves behind his family to fight in the war against Napoleon; and Natasha Rostov, the beautiful young daughter of a nobleman, who intrigues both men. As Napoleon’s army invades, Tolstoy vividly follows characters from diverse backgrounds—peasants and nobility, civilians and soldiers—as they struggle with the problems unique to their era, their history, and their culture. And as the novel progresses, these characters transcend their specificity, becoming some of the most moving—and human—figures in world literature.
Yeah, I’ve read War and Peace. And since that time, everything went wrong. I mean, I got off to a good start, I read about 500 pages the first month, then when the story of the war started to take up all the narration I got particularly bored and couldn’t go on. And I had a reader’s block.
Do I recommend it? No. Or better, if you have to cross “reading War and Peace” from your challenges then yes, but if you have to read it for “fun” no, don’t. I read it because some BookTubers read it and they liked it so much… I don’t know how and why (I just finished it and I still haven’t seen their videos dedicated to this book).
One thing I have to say though. Russia would do well to re-read this book before declaring war on other independent nations. They would learn many things. And although I knew the end, Napoleon comes out as the loser since it is history, I would have liked it to be the other way around. Which is obviously unthinkable given Tolstoy’s bias (understandable since he is Russian).
Anyway I finished it to learn how the relationships end which I don’t usually care about but those were the best part in the book.
And no, I’m not going to call him Leo. It’s Lev or Liev.