Well? Can you guess it? Probably not because perhaps you doubted me, but I’ve done it! I finally finished Anna Karenina. I was so happy when I was nearing the end ... so much so, I was trying to rush myself to finish the book.
I earnestly wanted to find out how the story ends. I thought for sure that something bad was going to happen at the end and somehow reading faster made me feel better about the idea of a tragedy. Luckily, nothing happened. The book ended peacefully and ended in a way where I was left satisfied.
My favourite characters in the book were Kitty, Dolly and Levin. Actually I think I liked Kitty’s whole family. Her father had a great sense of humor, so it is only natural that I should love his character. I am very glad that Kitty ended up with Levin and that they were able to have a child without any complications. I was so worried that something terrible was going to happen to Kitty and that Levin was going to be left alone. Nevertheless, all is well.
I really don’t like Oblonsky. I think he is terribly full of himself and very impertinent. He puts his nose into everybody’s business, assuming that he knows best. I also feel great indignation towards how he treats his wife. He completely takes her for granted while he prances around wasting money and sleeping with whomever he pleases. He has the audacity to look at his wife and complain that she is no longer attractive, after having his kids, and yet protests when his wife tries to leave him. Moreover, he encouraged bachelors to flirt with committed women. Since he is unfaithful, he thinks it is outrageous for a man to be faithful and considerate of his wife. I remember how displeased he was to learn that Levin put his wife first. As you can imagine I am very proud of Levin for sticking to his guns and deciding to ignore all of Oblonsky’s stupid advice, especially in regards to his marriage.
Likewise, I dislike Vronsky and his actions. I cannot comprehend how a man can pursue a married woman, knowing the damage it would cause her. He knew that being with him would mean that she was going to be separated from her son and hated in society and yet he pursued her. As well I am not convinced that he truly loved her. I think he stayed with her because he felt an obligation to her and he pursued her because he was infatuated, but that’s it. I don’t think he ever loved her.
I am sure you can imagine how I feel about Anna Karenina. I really did not like her at all. I think she was a horrible and selfish woman. She broke her husband’s heart on a whim and betrayed a friend (Kitty) to be with somebody she wasn’t supposed to be with. Even as her husband was trying to remain magnanimous, she took advantage of his kindness and thought of herself alone. She even abandoned her son for a man who was probably incapable of truly loving and knowing her. Once she felt dissatisfied with him, she aimed to ruin her life by committing suicide. If that isn’t selfish and cruel, then I don’t know what is.
Ultimately I liked the story. It was really long and drawn out. But on the bright side because it was, I was able to fall in love with characters like Kitty and Levin. However, I still think it was superfluous to make the story as long as it was. The story could have easily been told in 500 pages or less. Additionally, the writing is superb and really gives a vivid imagine of the descriptions in the book. The characters were relatable and the story was interesting. For that, I give the book a 4.5 out of 5 (I’m taking points out because it was too long). Like I said, it could have been a lot shorter, but it was one of best books I’ve read.
If you’ve read the book, tell me what you think about it. What do you think of Anna? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below. Don’t be stingy with your thoughts!