Customer Reviews for

The Gambler (Barnes & Noble Library of Essential Reading)

Average Rating 4
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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 16, 2004

    Kay's Review for THE GAMBLER

    Fyodor Dostoyevsky¿s The Gambler was about a man, Alexey, who tells the story of a family betraying each other for money through his dairy. He is the main character who is looked down upon his family but as the story progresses, they look to him for help. This novel is full of conspiracy, greed, love, and weakness that lead to the destruction of a once happy group of people. First, there are five main characters. Alexey is the protagonist who is the narrator of the story. He struggles with the General for power in the family. The General is a pig-headed man who desires love and money. These two aspects are taken away from him in the beginning and then returned at the end of the story. Blanche is a gold digging woman who focuses her life on appearances. Granny is an old woman who controls the entire family and does not let anyone push her around. Polina, a simple girl, is very innocent in her actions but too naïve to make her own decisions. Next, the word ¿family¿ does not mean an actual group of people that are related. It actually is a group of people who are part of a rich club. Ironically, the ¿family¿ does not act as a family at all. They back stab and compete with each other for social standings. For instance, the General sends telegrams to the Granny¿s servant to see if she is dead in order for him to inherent her fortune. Also, there are many literary techniques. Gambling, distrust, hatred, greed, insanity, and conspiracy are motifs that recycle through the novel. Obviously, gambling occurs many times, hence the title of the story. Distrust, conspiracy, hatred, and greed all intertwine together. The General and Granny create these motifs because they never get along. Alexey foreshadows catastrophes through his diary when talking to the reader. He tells of problems that will occur the next day, but will not tell the reader of the incident until the next chapter. The main theme is that the human mind is weak. Gambling takes over everyone¿s mind and they are not able to turn away from the dice. The whole family borrows from each other so they can try and win more money. In conclusion, The Gambler was full of the aspects of evil. It contained the reality of the world and its darkness. I would recommend this book to someone who needs to open his or her eyes to what society has to offer.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2002

    Disappointing after reading other Dostoevsky Novels...

    The gambler is not a bad book, still, after reading the brothers karamazov and crime and punishment, it is a disappointment. you can really tell Dostoevsky was paying off some debt with the book-it doesn't have his very descriptive style, it is rather a simplistic view at the high society of XIX cent. europe, and some of his psychoanalysis is present, but compared to his other books it is disappointing, or, rather, he set his standards too high with the others. still, worht the while, its not even long.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 23, 2009

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