Saturday, August 31, 2013

War and Peace Check-In: August

So, this section, LOL.

Last week, Iris tweeted me and was like, THIS IS LONG. And it was definitely longer than the last couple of months, but for some reason I still found it pretty easy to read? Also, I totally forgot I'm supposed to post these on the last day of the month, sorry!

Anyway, while I didn't enjoy the character revelations quite as much as last month's section, I still found some interesting bits tucked in Tolstoy's history lesson. I think something that makes War & Peace kind of absurd is that you have these brief humorous light moments that reflect life and then these big heavy sections explaining military strategy and why people win and lose.

So here goes:

*I was sort of relieved the old prince finally died. I mean, he made his children's lives miserable and everyone around him, etc. so it seemed like a good thing to happen.

*So are Rostov and Mayra going to get married? I mean don't actually tell me but I could see that happening.

*I thought it was really funny how they were supposed to pay a fine for speaking French, but Helene couldn't refrain and didn't even know the words for things in Russian.

*I find the fictionalized sections about Napoleon rather odd, to be honest, and I don't enjoy them even if I realize it gives the book broader scope.

*I really liked Andrei raging against the idea of a gentleman's war, and proclaiming how awful it is that war confers honor on leaders, when it is actually savage and brutal and unpredictable and awful.

*And I loved all his preparing for death sections, feeling like he had missed something in life and feeling like he had put all sorts of importance on unimportant things. His revelation that compassionate love is the purpose of life or whatever upon seeing good old Anatole sort of reminded me of Levin's whole breakthrough at the end of Anna Karenina.

*Speaking of, I also loved the anecdote about Natasha trying to express in words something that had meant a lot to her because I can relate!

*I thought Pierre hanging around the battlefield was odd.

*Oh but I did forget to mention that one of the things I liked a lot last month was how everyone got these big huge feelings of being patriotic that moved them to do stupid things, sort of like in this section, Pierre feeling like the purpose of life was sacrifice it didn't matter what you were sacrificing for.

Too much war for my taste, but I'm thrilled that we are still reading!

Drop a link if you are!


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