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War and Peace [Hardcover]

Leo Tolstoy , Constance Garnett
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
List Price: CDN$ 38.95
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Book Description

May 17 1994 Modern Library

From the award-winning translators of Anna Karenina and The Brothers Karamazov comes this magnificent new translation of Tolstoy's mastwerwork.

War and Peace broadly focuses on Napoleon's invasion of Russia in 1812 and follows three of the most well-known characters in literature: Pierre Bezukhov, the illegitimate son of a count who is fighting for his inheritance and yearning for spiritual fulfillment; Prince Andrei Bolkonsky, who leaves his family behind to fight in the war against Napoleon; and Natasha Rostov, the beautiful young daughter of a nobleman who intrigues both men.

As Napoleon's army invades, Tolstoy brilliantly follows characters from diverse backgrounds—peasants and nobility, civilians and soldiers—as they struggle with the problems unique to their era, their history, and their culture. And as the novel progresses, these characters transcend their specificity, becoming some of the most moving—and human—figures in world literature. Translated by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky

(Book Jacket Status: Not Jacketed)

 

Three-Volume Boxed Set


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Review

“There remains the greatest of all novelists—for what else can we call the author of War and Peace?” —Virginia Woolf

From the Back Cover

“There remains the greatest of all novelists—for what else can we call the author of War and Peace?” —Virginia Woolf


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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First Sentence
WELL, PRINCE, Genoa and Lucca are now no more than private estates of the Bonaparte family. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yes, the Greatest Novel Ever Written June 30 2004
Format:Hardcover
I have read a lot of books and so I've scrabbled together a fairly intelligent idea of what a great book is; the definition has always been complicated and hard to explain, but I really needn't have bothered. The concept can be summed up in only three words: "War and Peace".
This is, simply, what all novels want to be when they grow up. The novel format is as varied as the writers who attempt it---to call "War and Peace" and "Ulysses" examples of the same art form seems ridiculous, but it's true---but ultimately a novel is a story about humans that explains what humanity is, or might be, or could have been; through these characters whose adventures you're following, you might learn something about what it means to be a human being. Every art form is about this experience, but only the novel can really hunker down and explore humanity in all its billions of shapes. You can learn not only facts and feelings but you can learn TIME by spending it in these pages. You can learn GROWTH. You can learn LIFE.
The main characters in "War and Peace" are Pierre Bezuhov, Prince Andrey Bolkonsky, and Natasha Rostov, three Russians caught in the middle of the war between their country and France in the years 1805 to 1813. Through them we meet dozens if not hundreds more characters, and through those dozens or hundreds we simply meet humanity itself. There's no other way to express it. The way Tolstoy tells us about his characters shows us ourselves; the identification is that strong. When a character falls, in battle or from old age, we feel that someone we know personally is gone, and we mourn them as though we couldn't simply flip back a few pages and resurrect them.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yes, It's Worth the Trouble Aug. 25 1999
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
Although my blind urge to read the Great Classics has (thankfully) faded somewhat over the years in favor of reading whatever I damn please, I finally decided it was time to give War and Peace a try. After all, how can anyone who enjoys novels resist the lure of "the greatest novel of all time"? And Tolstoy himself was an unusually interesting man -- not a screwed-up genius but one who seemed to eventually figure it all out. It took me maybe a hundred pages to get into the rhythm of the book and figure out who all those characters with multisyllabic Russian names were. After that, it was totally engrossing and surprisingly easy reading. There's no point giving you a book report on what happens -- you're supposed to read it yourself -- but I do disagree with some of the other reviewers who didn't care for the sections describing Tolstoy's philosophy of history. I found those sections (a very small proportion of the book) fascinating, albeit a change of pace. This is part of what makes the book great. War and Peace is not just a story of what happens to a bunch of made-up people, but a major work of art expressing the wisdom of a great man.
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By Artistjohn TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have wanted to read this book for 40 years..To be honest I was a little intimidated..All those Russian names...The style was unknown to me..question marks...I am so pleased I got this book...Historic novels were always my cup of tea..."The War" is exciting ..Tolstoy describes the Charge of the Light Brigade.. a few lines in an engrossing novel depicting "War is Hell"..In "The Peace" there is intrigue..a shadowy woman reaches under the head of a dying Prince's pillow to steal a will out from underneath the scheming sisters hands..how exciting ..a real page turner..So different that I imagined this epic would be to read..
Enjoy this monument to reading
Hugs
John
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5.0 out of 5 stars one of my most fav books ever March 3 2013
By Dia
Format:Kindle Edition
I was lucky enough to read the book in its original language when i was going to high school in Russia, and now more than 20 years later i am still spellbound by the story, the beauty and richness of the author's language...the writing is so beautiful it made me cry at some passages. I have read and reread the book several times since my first "compulsory" read, but nevertheless the story is always fresh and captivating.
The characters are richly developed; it is as if you are right there yourself seeing and feeling what they do. It is also an amazing historical work, very accurate, very detailed, and never boring. It is the book that stays with you for the rest of your life. If you haven't read it yet, then what are you waiting for?
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5.0 out of 5 stars A deep and profound classic Dec 4 2005
Format:Paperback
WAR AND PEACE successfully captured life's promises, challenges, joys, triumphs, and losses in a way that no other novels has done before and after. In this novel with more characters than any other I can imagine; the main characters are Pierre Bezuhov, Prince Andrey Bolkonsky, and Natasha Rostov, who are all affected by the destabilization of the war Napoleon brought upon Russia in the early nineteenth century. It is around them that the other characters revolve. Even though the sheer size of this novel of over a million words may discourage readers to pick it up, the consuming nature of the story keeps a reader glued to the book from the opening pages. The sheer power of this romantic and adventurous story made this classic story to survive as perhaps the best of all times.
The essence of Power, which is what leads individuals to move nations is the ultimate question of War and Peace. And this individuals or great men of history, are in reality the slave of history. That underlying fact can be found in other Russian stories. UNION MOUJIK, TARAS BULBA, CRIME AND PUNISHMENT,MASTER AND MAN feature that concept. The war part of the story features remarkable military campaigns such as those by Napoleon and his Russian counterpart, Emperor Aleksandr, as they employed their different strategies in the quest for victory on the lands of Russia.
War and Peace is entertaining as well as enlightening and is considered by many to be the master of all Russian novels. Its overview of Russian life and culture involving peasants and the aristocracy gives a true to life portrayal of humanity. You can find glimpses of other Great Russian novels in this story. In short, this epic cannot be forgotten after you have read it.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A classic, but long
I put off reading this for years, though I'd taken on other books such as CRIME AND PUNISHMENT and some other Russian literature. Read more
Published on March 12 2007 by Asia
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb!
I have encountered this novel because my dad recommended it to me. I think it was a challenge, because while other people of my age (13) are reading Harry Potter, Inkheart, etc... Read more
Published on July 12 2006 by Rachel Ling
5.0 out of 5 stars Two opposites, not attracting, equal a great book
This is not a --light and fun--book, the way some more modern pieces of literature come to mind (SLAUGHTER HOUSE FIVE by Vonnegut---still a classic in its own way---and... Read more
Published on June 25 2006 by J.P. Cornwall
5.0 out of 5 stars A deep and profound classic
WAR AND PEACE successfully captured life's promises, challenges, joys, triumphs, and losses in a way that no other novels has done before and after. Read more
Published on April 20 2006 by Sergey Vasilev
5.0 out of 5 stars Epic proportions
How does one do justice to a work as monumental and vast as Tolstoy's 'War and Peace' in the short space this review grants? Read more
Published on Feb. 28 2006 by FrKurt Messick
5.0 out of 5 stars Epic proportions
How does one do justice to a work as monumental and vast as Tolstoy's 'War and Peace' in the short space this review grants? Read more
Published on Feb. 28 2006 by FrKurt Messick
5.0 out of 5 stars Epic proportions
How does one do justice to a work as monumental and vast as Tolstoy's 'War and Peace' in the short space this review grants? Read more
Published on Feb. 28 2006 by FrKurt Messick
5.0 out of 5 stars Novel or Epic?
Can't afford to travel to Russia to explore historic St.Petersburg, Moscow, and the beautiful rural villages? Then give War and Peace a try. Read more
Published on June 15 2004 by Jennifer R. Wright
5.0 out of 5 stars IT'S NOT DEBATABLE:THIS IS THE GREATEST NOVEL
It took me close to six months to read it all(this within my very tight schedule)but it was worth it. Read more
Published on May 8 2004 by pettie mabhena
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