Anna Karenina (Signet Classics)

Anna Karenina (Signet Classics)

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Anna Karenina (Signet Classics) by Leo Tolstoy

Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina startled the world with its powerful portrayal of the human need for love and happiness weighted against the rigid demands of society. Its heroine, the sensual, rebellious Anna, renounces a respectable yet stifling marriage for an extramarital affair that offers a taste of passion even as it ensnares her in a trap for destruction. Her story contrasts with that of Levin, a young self-doubting agnostic who takes a different path to fulfillment and finds faith and marital bliss in an age of repression.

Considered the greatest novel of the nineteenth century, Anna Karenina has been called Tolstoy's spiritual autobiography. Anna and Levin personify his lifelong struggle to reconcile his physical desires and intellectual ideals in order to lead a more meaningful existence. His program for abstinence and nonviolence, based on a personal interpretation of the Gospels, made him one of the world's most venerated teachers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780451524492
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/01/1961
Series: World Classic Literature Series
Pages: 808
Product dimensions: 4.30(w) x 6.82(h) x 1.32(d)
Lexile: 1080L (what's this?)

About the Author

Count Leo Tolstoy was born on September 9, 1828, in Yasnaya Polyana, Russia.  Orphaned at nine, he was brought up by an elderly aunt and educated by French tutors until he matriculated at Kazan University in 1844. In 1847, he gave up his studies and, after several aimless years, volunteered for military duty in the army, serving as a junior officer in the Crimean War before retiring in 1857. His diary, started in 1847, was used for self-study and self-criticism; it served as the source from which he drew much of the material that appeared not only in his great novels War and Peace (1869) and Anna Karenina (1877), but also in his shorter works. Seeking religious justification for his life, Tolstoy evolved a new Christianity based upon his own interpretation of the Gospels. Yasnaya Polyana became a Mecca for his many converts.  At the age of eighty-two, while away from home, the writer suffered a breakdown in his health in Astapovo, Riazan, and he died there on November 20, 1910.

Date of Birth:

September 9, 1828

Date of Death:

November 20, 1910

Place of Birth:

Tula Province, Russia

Place of Death:

Astapovo, Russia


Privately educated by French and German tutors; attended the University of Kazan, 1844-47

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Anna Karenina Signet Classics 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 20 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This remarkable story by one of the few mega-novelists of all times is an ageless story that is more real than fiction. I decided to read a copy of this book on my way to vacation last the summer and ended up spending most of my first week being glued to the book. Though it is a Russian story of a century and a half ago, its essence still resonates today.
BookLuver345 More than 1 year ago
Wow! I haven't read such a thrilling book in a long time! Anna karinina is one of the best novels I have ever read! It weaves the two lives of Anna and Levin seamlessly and keeps your attention to the very end. I definitly recommend it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a teenager I hardly have to to ever read a long book. But this novel was the greatest piece of literature i have ever had in my possession. It was very clear on its message and was very thrilling on the realisticness of human behavior.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A 'marathon book' is a book that is not only going to take a lot of time for you to read, but it is also a book that will force you to exit yourself and enter a new way of thinking. You will have to accept new rules, new scenarios, new kinds of motives. 'Anna Karenina' is a book of stories intertwined. The characters are real to the point that we must live with them throughout the events of their lives. Anna is comfortable in a marriage to a man she does not love. She has a son and he is singly her whole life. A nobleman soons falls in love with her and pursues her until he convinces her to become his lover.This is just the beginning and I must not say much more for fear that I will spoil it for you. I recommend this book. Like the other great 'marathon books' ie: 'moby dick', 'lucky monkeys in the sky', 'war and peace', etc., 'Anna' will not only engross you, it will devour you for the time and feeling you devote to it. Like 'lucky monkeys in the sky' and the other forementioned novels, 'Anna' carries the themes: fate,death, the meaning of life, and faith. You will most likely love it or hate it, but, most of all, you will think. In the end, I believe, it will be a devotion well worth the time.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think Anna Kerenina is the best of Tolstoy's work and consider it one of the best novels ever written. Tolstoy weaves a tale like no other author and with every chapter you will be amazed at his way of describing a situation to the reader or his keen insight into human behavior. Highly Recommended. If you want to try Tolstoy on a smaller scale, try some of his short stories such as 'How much land does a man need?'
Guest More than 1 year ago
When i settled down to read Anna Karenina, i was prepared to enjoy a book that i had heard was remarkable. After the first chapter, i knew it was more than that; it is the best book ever written! It takes you along the sordid road of Anna Karenina's life, and the more pleasent and sefl fulfilling one of Levin. This book delves into the human spirit, morality, and human weakness and emotion. Leo Tolstoy is an OUTSTANDING writer who deserves the applauses of millions. I reccommend this book to every living person!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
i really liked this book.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the perfect portrait of society in czarist Russia, besides being a fantastic novel. The characters are vivid, the storylines compelling. Through reading this book you will get a better understanding of yourself.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Anna Karenina is truly one of my favorite novels of all time! I'm a senior in high school and I read this novel for my 11th grade A.P. English Literature class. The plot is rich and captivating, and the 'drama' that occurs throughout the book, as well as the decisions made by Anna and the antagonists in the novel makes it a truly heart breaking tragedy. Just a must-read masterpiece! I totally enjoyed reading this beautiful piece of literature!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I absolutly couldn't put this book down! I love the contrast between the lives of the characters. It is amazing how Tolstoy gives all of his characters their own individual personalities. I am a 13 year old girl in the 8th grade, but I loved this book exceedingly. The beginning is captivating, the middle is unbelievable, and the end is tragic, but prepossessing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book several years ago, and recently read it again. I was still amazed at how well written it is, and how wonderfully Tolstoy makes the story accessible to all.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a wonderfully written love story. There are some passages that are a bit tedious, but plow through them and reap the rewards (and satisfaction)of having read a real classic. As with any good book, I wanted to know more about what happened to the characters after the book ended. Tolstoy's insights into history and into personal dynamics and complexities are astounding. Although the book is over 120 years old, it still has appeal to a modern reader with all of the wonders of life's tragedies and triumphs.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy was fantastic! I couldn't put the book down until I was finished. The plot is so deep and mysterious. I found myself falling in love with the charachters and the story felt so realistic. I give it an A+!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a long book, but it is great partially because it is long. The author gives a lot of depth to the characters and creates believability in them. The translation is very readable, and all it really takes is the time to get through the 1000+ pages. People who try to summarize the theme as 'Don't commit adultery' are missing the point of the book. The characterization is so well, that every reader should be able to identify a little with each character in the book. If the reader is honest and reflects seriously, he(she) should be able to recognize himself(herself) in a lot of places here. This is really a book to help you get to know yourself. It is one of those rare things that can actually make you a better person. It can help you lead a better life.
Guest More than 1 year ago
As this is a classic and considered by some as 'the best novel ever written', I was disappointed. The story moved very slowly and was anti-climatic. I found myself forcing myself to finish it waiting for something to happen. Not much did. I think that the early relationship between Anna and Vronsky should have been developed in more detail. A better read would be The Crimson Petal and the White or The Forsyte Saga.