The Brothers Karamazov (Modern Library Series)

( 175 )

Overview

The Brothers Karamazov, Dostoevsky's crowning achievement, is a tale of patricide and family rivalry that embodies the moral and spiritual dissolution of an entire society (Russia in the 1870s). It created a national furor comparable only to the excitement stirred by the publication, in 1866, of Crime and Punishment. To Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov captured the quintessence of Russian character in all its exaltation, compassion, and profligacy. Significantly, the book was on Tolstoy's bedside table when he ...
See more details below
Hardcover
$17.01
BN.com price
(Save 29%)$24.00 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (16) from $9.99   
  • New (11) from $14.67   
  • Used (5) from $9.99   
The Brothers Karamazov

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$12.99
BN.com price
Marketplace
BN.com

All Available Formats & Editions

Overview

The Brothers Karamazov, Dostoevsky's crowning achievement, is a tale of patricide and family rivalry that embodies the moral and spiritual dissolution of an entire society (Russia in the 1870s). It created a national furor comparable only to the excitement stirred by the publication, in 1866, of Crime and Punishment. To Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov captured the quintessence of Russian character in all its exaltation, compassion, and profligacy. Significantly, the book was on Tolstoy's bedside table when he died. Readers in every language have since accepted Dostoevsky's own evaluation of this work and have gone further by proclaiming it one of the few great novels of all ages and countries.
    "The Brothers Karamazov stands as the culmination of Dostoevsky's art--his last, longest, richest, and most capacious book," said The Washington Post Book World.
  "Nothing is outside Dostoevsky's province," observed Virginia Woolf. "Out of Shakespeare there is no more exciting reading."

The Modern Library has played a significant role in American cultural life for the better part of a century. The series was founded in 1917 by the publishers Boni and Liveright and eight years later acquired by Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer. It provided the foun-dation for their next publishing venture, Random House. The Modern Library has been a staple of the American book trade, providing readers with affordable hard-bound editions of important works of liter-ature and thought. For the Modern Library's seventy-fifth anniversary, Random House redesigned the series, restoring as its emblem the running torchbearer created by Lucian Bernhard in 1925 and refurbishing jackets, bindings, and type, as well as inau-gurating a new program of selecting titles. The Modern Library continues to provide the world's best books, at the best prices.

The story of the Karamazov brothers and their varying justifications, or lack thereof, for the world.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“[Dostoevsky is] at once the most literary and compulsively readable of novelists we continue to regard as great . . . The Brothers Karamazov stands as the culmination of his art–his last, longest, richest, and most capacious book. [This] scrupulous rendition can only be welcomed. It returns us to a work we thought we knew, subtly altered and so made new again.” –Washington Post Book World

“A miracle . . . Every page of the new Karamazov is a permanent standard, and an inspiration.” –The Times (London)

“One finally gets the musical whole of Dostoevsky’s original.” –New York Times Book Review

“Absolutely faithful . . . Fulfills in remarkable measure most of the criteria for an ideal translation . . . The stylistic accuracy and versatility of registers used . . . bring out the richness and depth of the original in a way similar to a faithful and sensitive restoration of a painting.” –The Independent

“It may well be that Dostoevsky’s [world], with all its resourceful energies of life and language, is only now–and through the medium of [this] new translation–beginning to come home to the English-speaking reader.” –New York Review of Books

“Heartily recommended to any reader who wishes to come as close to Dostoevsky’s Russian as it is possible.” –Joseph Frank, Princeton University

With an Introduction by Malcolm V. Jones

Washington Post Book World
The Brothers Karamazov stands as the culmination of Dostoevsky's art—his last, longest, richest, and most capacious book.
From Barnes & Noble
This turbulent story centers on the murder of Fyodor Pavlovitch Karamazov, a corrupt, loutish landowner, and the aftermath for his sons: the passionate Dmitri, the coldly intellectual Ivan, the spiritual Alexey, and the bastard Smerdyakov.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780679601814
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 1/28/1996
  • Series: Modern Library Series
  • Edition number: 1996
  • Pages: 912
  • Sales rank: 244,698
  • Product dimensions: 5.63 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Fyodor Dostoevsky's life was as dark and dramatic as the great novels he wrote. He was born in Moscow in 1821, and when he died in 1881, he left a legacy of masterworks that influenced the great thinkers and writers of the Western world and immortalized him as a giant among writers of world literature.
Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

FYODOR PAVLOVICH KARAMAZOV

ALexei Fyodorovich Karamazov was the third son of Fyodor Pavlovich Karamazov, a landowner in our district who became a celebrity (and is remembered to this day) because of the tragic and mysterious end he met exactly thirteen years ago, which will be described in its proper place. For the moment, I will only say of this "landowner" (as they referred to him here, although he spent hardly any time on his land) that he belonged to a peculiar though widespread human type, the sort of man who is not only wretched and depraved but also muddle-headed--muddle-headed in a way that allows him to pull off all sorts of shady little financial deals and not much else.

Fyodor Karamazov, for instance, started with next to nothing; he was just about the lowliest landowner among us, a man who would dash off to dine at other people's tables whenever he was given a chance and who sponged off people as much as he could. Yet, at his death, they found that he had a hundred thousand rubles in hard cash. And with all that, throughout his life he remained one of the most muddle-headed eccentrics in our entire district. Let me repeat: it was not stupidity, for most such eccentrics are really quite intelligent and cunning, and their lack of common sense is of a special kind, a national variety.

He had been married twice and had three sons--the eldest, Dmitry, by his first wife, and the other two, Ivan and Alexei, by the second.

Fyodor Karamazov's first wife came from a fairly wealthy family of landed gentry--the Miusovs--also from our district. Why should a girl with a dowry, a beautiful girl moreover, one of those bright, clever young things who in this generation are no longer rare and who even cropped up occasionally in the last--why should she marry such a worthless "freak," as they called him? I will not really attempt to explain. But, then, I once knew a young lady of the old, "romantic" generation who, after several years of secret love for a gentleman whom, please note, she could have peacefully married at any moment she chose, invented insurmountable obstacles for herself and, one stormy night, jumped from a steep, rather cliff-like bank into a fairly deep, rapid river and drowned, all because she fancied herself an Ophelia out of Shakespeare. Indeed, if the bank, on which she had had her eye for a long time, had been less picturesque or had there simply been a flat bank, it is conceivable that the suicide would never have taken place at all. This is a true story, and it must be assumed that in the past two or three generations quite a few similar incidents have occurred. In the same way, what Adelaida Miusov did was undoubtedly an echo of outside influences and also the act of exasperation of a captive mind. Perhaps she was trying to display feminine independence, to rebel against social conventions, against the despotism of her family and relatives, while her ready imagination convinced her, if only for a moment, that Fyodor Karamazov, despite his reputation as a sponger, was nevertheless one of the boldest and most caustic men of that "period of transition toward better things," whereas in reality he was nothing but a nasty buffoon. The fact that the marriage plans included elopement added piquancy to it, making it more exciting for Adelaida. Fyodor, at that time, would, of course, have done anything to improve his lowly position, and the opportunity to latch on to a good family and to pocket a dowry was extremely tempting to him. As for love, there does not seem to have been any, either on the bride's part or, despite her beauty, on Karamazov's. This was perhaps a unique case in Fyodor Karamazov's life, for he was as sensual as a man can be, one who throughout his life was always prepared, at the slightest encouragement, to chase any skirt. But his wife just happened to be the one woman who did not appeal to him sensually in the least.

Right after the elopement, Adelaida realized that she felt nothing but scorn for her husband. It quickly became obvious what married life was to be. Despite the fact that her family accepted the situation quite soon and gave the runaway bride her dowry, relations between husband and wife became an everlasting succession of quarrels. It was rumored that, in these quarrels, the young wife displayed incomparably more dignity and generosity than her husband, who, it was found out later, soon wheedled out of her every kopek of the twenty-five thousand rubles she had received, so that, as far as she was concerned, those thousands were sunk in deep waters never to be salvaged again. As to the little country estate and the quite decent town house that were also part of her dowry, he kept trying desperately to have them transferred to his name by some suitable deed; he probably would have succeeded because of the loathing and disgust his constant pleading and begging inspired in his wife, because she would do anything to have peace, sick and tired as she was of him; but luckily Adelaida's family intervened in time to put a stop to his greed.

People knew that husband and wife often came to actual blows and rumor had it that it was she who beat him, rather than he her. Indeed, Adelaida was a hot-tempered, bold, dark, and impatient lady endowed with remarkable physical strength.

Finally she eloped with a half-starved tutor, a former divinity student, leaving her husband with their three-year-old boy, Mitya.

Fyodor Karamazov immediately installed a regular harem in the house and indulged in the most scandalous drunken debauchery. But between one orgy and the next, he would drive all over the province complaining tearfully to all and sundry of Adelaida's desertion, and revealing on these occasions certain unsavory intimate details of their conjugal life that any other husband would have been ashamed to mention. He even seemed to enjoy--indeed, to feel flattered by--his ridiculous role as a cuckolded husband, for he insisted on describing his own disgrace in minute detail, even embellishing on it. "Why, Fyodor Pavlovich," people remarked, "you act as if an honor had been bestowed upon you. You seem pleased despite your sorrow." Many even added that he was delighted to have the role of clown thrust upon him, that he only pretended to be unaware of his ridiculous position in order to make it even funnier. But who can really tell? Possibly he was quite ingenuous about it all.

He finally succeeded in getting on the track of his runaway wife. It led to Petersburg where the poor thing had moved with her divinity student and where she had abandoned herself to a life of complete emancipation. Fyodor Karamazov immediately busied himself with preparations for the journey to Petersburg, and perhaps he would have gone, although he certainly had no idea what he would do there. But once he had decided to go, he felt that he had a special reason for plunging into a bout of unrestrained drunkenness--to fortify himself for the journey. And just at that time his in-laws received word that Adelaida had died in Petersburg. She died suddenly, in a garret, of typhus according to some, of starvation according to others. Karamazov was drunk when he learned of his wife's death, and some say he exclaimed joyfully, raising his hands to heaven: "Lord, now let Your servant depart in peace." But according to others, he wept, sobbing like a little boy so that people felt sorry for him despite the disgust he aroused in them. It is quite possible that they all were right, that he rejoiced in his regained freedom and wept for the woman from whom he had been freed, both at once. In most cases, people, even the most vicious, are much more naive and simple-minded than we assume them to be. And this is true of ourselves too.

CHAPTER 2

HE GETS RID OF HIS ELDEST SON

It is, of course, easy to imagine what sort of a father such a man would be, how he would bring up his children. And he lived up to expectation: he completely and thoroughly neglected his child by Adelaida. He did not do so out of any deliberate malice or resentment toward the child's mother, but simply because he forgot all about the little boy. And while he was pestering people with his tears and self-pitying stories, while he was turning his home into a house of debauchery, a faithful servant of the household, Gregory, took the three-year-old Mitya into his care. If it hadn't been for Gregory, there would have been no one to change the boy's shirt. Moreover, it so happened that the child's relations on his mother's side had also, at first, forgotten his existence. Mitya's grandfather, that is, Adelaida's father, Mr. Miusov, was no longer alive; his widow, Mitya's grandmother, had moved to Moscow and was in very poor health; and, in the meantime, Adelaida's sisters had married and moved away. So Mitya spent almost a year in Gregory's little house in the servants' quarters. And, even if his father had occasionally remembered him (he could not, after all, have been completely unaware of the child's existence), Karamazov would have sent his son back to the servants' quarters anyway, because a child would have been in the way during the orgies.

But one day a first cousin of Adelaida's returned from Paris. Peter Miusov, who was later to settle abroad permanently, was at that time still a young man, but he was already an exception among the Miusovs: he was an enlightened, big-city gentleman, glittering with foreign polish, a European through and through who, later in life, was to become a typical liberal of the 1840's and 1850's. In the course of his life, he came in contact with some of the most liberal minds of his era, both in Russia and abroad. He met Proudhon personally, as well as Bakunin, and, toward the end of his wanderings, liked best to tell of his experiences during the three days of the February Revolution of 1848 which he had witnessed in Paris, implying that he himself had taken part in it, just short, perhaps, of manning the barricades. This was one of the most gratifying recollections of his youth. He was a man of independent means, with an income from an estate of a thousand-odd souls, as property was evaluated in the old days. That splendid estate was located just outside our town and bordered on the lands of our famous monastery. No sooner had young Peter Miusov taken possession of his estate than he started an endless lawsuit against the monastery. It was something about fishing privileges or wood-cutting rights, I'm not sure which, but he felt that in suing "clericals" he was doing his duty as a citizen and an enlightened man.

When Miusov heard what had happened to Adelaida, whom he, of course, remembered, having even, at one time, taken a special interest in her, and when he learned of Mitya's plight, he decided to intervene, although that involved approaching Karamazov, whom Miusov loathed and despised with all the ardor of youth. This was the first time that he met Fyodor Karamazov; he told him point blank that he wished to take the boy and be responsible for his education. Later, he liked to tell at length what had happened at that meeting, because he felt it revealed a great deal about Karamazov's character. When Miusov first broached the subject of Mitya, the fellow stared at him blankly, as though he could not understand what child Miusov was talking about, and he seemed positively taken aback when reminded that he had a young son. And although Miusov's story may have been exaggerated, there was certainly an element of truth in it. It is a fact that all his life Karamazov liked to act the fool and assume all sorts of surprising roles; he would do so even when he had nothing to gain, indeed, even when it could be positively to his disadvantage, as in this instance. This is a quirk found in many people, even very clever ones, let alone the likes of Fyodor Karamazov.

Miusov at first went about the matter with some zest, and was even appointed Mitya's guardian (jointly with Karamazov), since the boy had, after all, the small estate and the town house coming to him as his inheritance from his mother. And he moved the boy to his house. But, not being tied down by a family of his own, just as soon as he had wound up his business in our town, which consisted of collecting the revenue from his estate, he went dashing off to Paris for a long stay. He left the boy in the care of a relative of his, a lady who lived in Moscow. Miusov settled in Paris for good and lost sight of Mitya, his interest in the boy petering out completely after the February Revolution, which made such an ineradicable impression on him. In the meantime, the Moscow lady died and Mitya passed into the care of one of her married daughters. I believe he had to change homes for a fourth time soon afterward. I won't expand on this topic here since I will have a great deal to say later about this first-born son of Fyodor Karamazov's, but I must supply a few facts right away, without which I could not even begin my novel.

First of all, Mitya--that is, Dmitry Fyodorovich Karamazov--was the only one of Fyodor Pavlovich Karamazov's sons who grew up under the impression that, however hard up he might be, he would, when he came of age, come into his inheritance from his mother and that he would then be financially independent. He was unruly as a boy and as a young man. He dropped out of the classical secondary school, but later was admitted to military school. From there he was sent on active duty with an army unit in the Caucasus, where he was given an officer's commission in the field. He was soon demoted to the ranks for fighting a duel, only to be restored to his rank again for gallantry. After this he led a wild, gay life that cost a good deal of money. Since, until he came of age, he never received a single kopek from his father, he was deep in debt by the time that day arrived. He only met and got to know the old man when he came to our town to demand an accounting of the estate left him by his mother. It would appear that, even then, Dmitry took a dislike to his father. He stayed at the paternal house only a short time, leaving as soon as he had managed to get a very small sum from the old man, together with some vague agreement about sending him the revenue from his estate. It must be noted here that on this occasion Dmitry failed to find out from his father what the total worth of his estate was or what income it yielded. Karamazov discovered right away (and this must be noted too) that his son had an erroneous and exaggerated notion of his inheritance, and this discovery pleased him for it fitted in with his own schemes. He realized that the young man was irresponsible, violent, passionate, unruly, impatient, and that he couldn't wait to satisfy all his whims and impulses. And Karamazov now knew how to handle Dmitry: the fellow could always be placated, at least temporarily, with small handouts. Karamazov proceeded immediately to exploit his son's weakness, putting him off with small sums. This went on for four years until, finally, Dmitry lost patience. He made a second appearance in town, this time to force on his father a final settlement of their accounts. He was quite stunned to hear from Karamazov that he had already received, in the many installments, a sum amounting to the value of his estate, that, if anything, it was he who was now in debt to his father, and that, moreover, in view of such and such an agreement which he himself had insisted upon at one point, he had renounced all further claims, etc., etc. The young man was dumbfounded, accused his father of cheating him, and acted as if he would go out of his mind.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 175 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(128)

4 Star

(29)

3 Star

(7)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(5)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 178 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 13, 2007

    BRILLIANT !! BRILLIANT !!

    This novel has everything you could possibly want in a book: love, family, murder, morals, life, and virtues. My favorite character is Alyosha, and I find myself falling in love with him the more pages I read in the book (could have something to do with the 1958 movie in which William Shatner plays Alyosha (Alexey)and the more I read the more I picture him as Alyosha. Dostoyevsky did an AMAZING job bringing his characters to life, and like most commentors' here, I agree that by the end of the book, you get to know the Karamazovs. It makes you wish that there was another book following this. MUST READ *****

    8 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 14, 2010

    Intense Reading

    I have to say it was a little hard getting into the book, but once you get about 175 pages in it reads very fast. I loved the book the names were difficult, but if you kept the names straight you will do fine. I would reccomend this book.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2007

    6 stars if possible

    Simply the best novel I have ever read. Period.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 17, 2012

    Misleading

    I purchase this book because it states it is a Pervear translation. The book is translated by someone else. This is not what I expected. Beware!!!!

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2010

    The Best Book Ever Written.

    The Headline above says it all.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2007

    A Masterpiece by a Master Writer

    Having read almost all of Dostoyevsky's work, I can honestly say that this is by far his masterpiece. It takes every moral dilema ever faced by his previous characters and blends it into one gruesome, fantastic tale of a despicable father and his four incredibly different sons. There are so many different levels to read this book on that it's almost impossible to summarize it in under ten pages and still do it justice. I would highly recommend reading The Brothers Karamazov first before any of Dostoyevsky's other works by seeing the culmination of his ideas (or at least as far as he was able to develop them before dying), it becomes easier to see common themes in his other masterpieces like Crime and Punishment.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 11, 2009

    One of the greatest works of all time

    Absolutely phenomenal book. Constance Garnett's translation is great. The book combines great psychology, philosophy, strong views on justice and morality, and deep chacterization into a well designed plot. 19th century Russia serves as a great backdrop to perhaps the greatest book of all time.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2008

    masterpiece

    Simply the best novel ever written.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2005

    Outstanding

    Brother's Karamazov definitely merits recognition as Dostoevsky's masterpiece. This book reads with all the suspense of a mystery, yet still offers deep insights into the overriding philosophical ideas of his day. As with all of Dostoevesky's works,the characterization is incredible. The characters are at turns detestable and lovable, but never flat. Alyosha remains my favorite character in all of literature.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 2, 2013

    Not Dostoevsky's masterpiece

    Dostoevsky usually does a wonderful job with his characterizations. It felt to me he just beats the reader over the head and pounds his characters into the ground in this novel. In Crime and Punishment he does a much better job showimg the reader the soul of his main character and provided a story that was much better put together than Bros Karamazov.
    My opinion is that Dostoevsky is still great but this is far from his best work. It was just WAY TOO LONG! It took me 4 full months to finally make it all the way through. If you like 19th century russian lit I highly suggest crime and punishment, the idiot, and the possesed. Also Tolstoy War and Peace and Anna Karenina are both wonderful novels.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 28, 2010

    The Wisdom and the Insight

    Much like the moral ideas that strike at the heart of East of Eden by the American author John Steinbeck, in Brothers Karamazov Dostoevsky portrays the internal struggle of every person using his realistic and identifiable cast of characters. Each brother is brought to life by Dostoevsky to represent a separate view point to morality and life. Dmitri = passion, Aloysha = restraint, Smerdyakov = brutality, and Ivan = Logical. I identified the most with Ivan, realizing that it was his struggle that I encounter most: the struggle of faith vs. logic. I can see why Aloysha is a favorite character of most people because of his inherent kindness, his desire to believe in the good of other people, and his neverending loyalty to his brothers and father despite their numerous faults.

    Those who seek answers to the difficult questions of morality, religion, justice, society, and family will find the aged and enlightened answers that Dostoevsky supplies worth the wealth of page turning this book requires.

    A definite favorite of mine.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2009

    AP World History Review: Trial of an Innocent Man

    Stuffed with characters as diverse as Russia's landscape, from an honorable scoundrel to a saint on earth, The Brothers Karamasov is a fantastic blend of strange encounters and insane events. Set in a nameless town in a nameless province in Russia, The story revolves around the death, or murder, of a crafty buffoon named Fyodor Pavlovitch Karamasov. As His son, Dimitri, is accused of the murder and arrested, his, brother, Alexey, is the only one who believes that he did not do the crime. The book climaxes at the dramatic trial of Dimitri, and ends with a lot of loose ends that are not tied up.
    I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in gleaning some insight into the culture of nineteenth-century Russia -- providing they have a good grasp of vocabulary. At times, the side plots and character personalities can be a bit confusing, but all in all, it was a very good read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 26, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    The Pevear Volokhonsky Translation

    This new translation of The Brothers Karamazov is a marked improvement over the older Constance Garnett translation: it is more enjoyable, the English is closer to Dostoevsky's Russian, and, thankfully, the humor of the original comes through.

    The Brothers Karamazov is Dostoevsky's final novel and is considered to be among his best. The work has not suffered from the passing of time and is still interesting and enjoyable. I recommend this new translation to anyone reading the work for the first time, or for those who have decided to re-read and don't mind buying a new copy.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 22, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Do NOT buy this translation!

    Constance Garnett is terrible. Do not get an book translated by her.
    Get the David McDuff translation or the Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky translation.

    This is the best book I have ever read. Hands down.
    The first 30 pages or so(first 'book') is somewhat dull, but after the story begins to pick up, it is the most fascinating book you will ever read!
    The plot is good. It is a fascinating murder story. I couldn't quite classify it as a mystery, as the intent of the book isn't to figure out who killed 'him', but it is nonetheless intriguing. What is more important, though, is the philosophy. The book is largely an exploration of a variety of religious questions. Those, I will let you ponder for yourself.
    The greatest virtue of the novel is the characterization. Dostoevsky an incredible ability to paint a character portrait.
    5 stars... For the better translation!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2007

    *Speechless*

    Such vividness. Well worth the effort.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2006

    A classic story

    A classic story The greatest soul writer of all times and great contributor to human psychology successfully created a beautiful and amazing dynamism between the Karamazov brothers that has been the core of many stories after involving siblings. There is the unreliable father, the old Fyodor Karamazov whose life dominates his sons and whose death casts a huge shadow on their future.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2005

    This book has everything!

    Each character is brilliantly identified so that you know them personally. Alexei, the monk, Karamazov Ivan, the most like his father, eloquent, and troubled by his own madness and Dmitri the self-proclaimed buffoon, the ladies man, the drunk, vying for the affections of Grushenka as is his father Fyodor, another self-proclaimed buffoon and drunk. Throughout, there is a battle between sanity and hysterics, realism and sensualism. The author sees troubled youth at the age of 13 needing a psychiatrist. He vividly describes his characters with 'brain fever'. He sees his own Russia in disarray, disorder, and sees the loss of personal values, where 'everything is permitted'. There is greed, jealousy, anger, gloom, despair in most of his characters. All his characters are 'dark' to say the least, with fleeting moments of joy. There are so many deep philosophical questions raised in this book. 'Does God exist, yes or no?' 'If not, perhaps there is a need to create the need for God.' There are surprises as well, showing limits of human capacity for suffering. Wow, what a great book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2005

    A classic story

    The greatest soul writer of all times and great contributor to human psychology successfully created a beautiful and amazing dynamism between the Karamazov brothers that has been the core of many stories after involving siblings. There is the unreliable father, the old Fyodor Karamazov whose life dominates his sons and whose death casts a huge shadow on their future.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 1, 2005

    A classic story

    THE BROTHERS KARAMAZOV, which is one of Dostoyevsky¿s all time best, perhaps the best, adds to make him perhaps the best writer of all times. The author came up with so many great ideas and characters that are so real to life even in their complex emotions and rationales that we relate to the characters as if we are in their heads. In the end, not only do we have a great story, we are also left with a beautifully written work of political, psychological, sociological, ethical and psychological thought that is very true not only to Russia, but to other lands and peoples as well.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2005

    Excellent

    The best book I have ever read. The character development is some of the best in all of western literature.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 178 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)