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Ben Babcock

I read, write, code, and knit.

Behold, I have finished War and Peace

You heard me. I'm now among one of the elite who have read War and Peace from beginning to end. Not only that, but I am among the elite who read it for pleasure instead of being forced to read it for some other purpose. If only I could read Russian. :D This actually happened last week, but I never got around to blogging about it.

Yes, War and Peace was excruciatingly boring at times--particularly when Tolstoy described the battles. I don't care about battles, but at least make it interesting, man! Don't describe the formations. Give me something to stimulate my imagination, honestly! The interaction among most of the main characters was great though.

After reading this, it strikes me that Tolstoy is essentially the Dickens of Russia. He is an excellent storyteller, but a terrible writer. Sometimes he gets lost in the social commentary and forgets that he does have to advance the plot once and a while; that's what made it boring at times. After all, the last part of the epilogue is just an indulgent treatise on his views of history and how events happen.

It is worth it, though. It is boring, and it takes way too long to read, but if you sit down and can finish it, then it's actually pretty good. Maybe you should try it the next time you've got nothing to do on a rainy day.