Discussion Forums - Classic Literature

Topic: War & Peace

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Subject: War & Peace
Date Posted: 7/25/2008 8:08 AM ET
Member Since: 7/17/2008
Posts: 1
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I have tried to read this three times.  Somewhere I read that if you get past the first 100 pages, the rest of the book reads very quickly and you can't put it down.  I've never got past page 50.  I have such a hard time keeping all the characters straight.  I perservered and read Brothers Karamazov by Doestoesvsky and it was well worth it.  But unlike Tolstoy, Doestoevsky writes a story that is character-driven with just a few characters and it was easier for me to keep them straight.  I will try W&P again sometime soon.  I do think the translation makes a difference, too.  The translation of Brothers Karamazov that I read was not the best and we bought another translation later that I will re-read.  I would suggest researching the different translations until you find the one that you like.



Date Posted: 7/26/2008 3:16 AM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2007
Posts: 702
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War and Peace has caused me to break my New Year's resolution (which was one of the few that I had kept ever).   I was reading a classic a month until June.  I am enjoying W & P; however, I'm just reading a few (make that 2 some days) chapters a day.  I really think that it's because I have so many other books that I want to read.  So, for almost the first time in my life, I am constantly reading 2 books at the same time--W & P and something else.  I enjoy the chapters in W & P, but definitely can put it down.  So.... right now, it's my classic for June and July, and, since I'm not even to page 500, it will definitely carry me through August, plus probably more.  My copy has about 1,000 pages.  I even bought Cliff's Notes that I thought that I would refer to, but I don't.  I get some of the characters mixed up, but it doesn't take away from Tolstoy's writing.  And, as far as the Russian history, pffffffI!!!!  I don't know it and probably never will.  In my opinion, however, that's what makes him a great writer.  I don't know much about the history and I can't even keep the characters straight, and yet, I'm still enjoying the book (slowly).  And this from someone who reads 10-12 books a month!

Date Posted: 7/27/2008 6:31 PM ET
Member Since: 6/4/2007
Posts: 2,941
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I've heard that if one is to attempt Tolstoy then Anna Karenina is a much better choice.  I've been busy reading Dostoevsky's works, though, and haven't begun reading Tolstoy yet.  Still, I'll probably trust my source and read Anna Karenina instead of War and Peace, at least at first.

Rick B. (bup) - ,
Date Posted: 7/28/2008 11:44 AM ET
Member Since: 11/2/2007
Posts: 2,625
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Sandy - here's unsought advice - just get through the first 100 pages, and don't worry too much about remembering everybody.

From the beginning of the book, at least pay attention to: Pierre, Boris, Natasha, and Prince Andre.

After the beginning with all the family politics, the story then splits, and long sections just involve a few characters at a time.

Date Posted: 7/29/2008 6:35 PM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2007
Posts: 1,900
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I suffered through Anna Karenina in February.  I think I've sworn off Tolstoy for at the least the next decade.  Good luck finishing War and Peace!

Date Posted: 8/2/2008 5:32 AM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2005
Posts: 5,091
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I loved War and Peace.  It was one of my all time favorite books.  I hated Anna Karenina.  I thought they were not really similar.

Date Posted: 8/5/2008 8:02 AM ET
Member Since: 7/1/2008
Posts: 2,835
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Although I liked them both, Anna Karenina and War and Peace are not very similar at all.

Date Posted: 8/5/2008 11:58 AM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2006
Posts: 1,930
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Last Edited on: 1/31/09 1:10 AM ET - Total times edited: 1