I took a whole year to read The Brothers Karamazov and I am taking my sweet time to write about it. I do feel like abandoning the effort to write about the book, but the whole point of Classic club is to encourage reading the classics and blogging about them too. So here I am…
This book requires a lot of effort to read because of its sheer number of pages – 1000+. The language is captivating and equally thought provoking. Dostoyevsky is not short of words and does take his time to write down his thoughts around any character or incident narrated.
From my experience reading Fyodor Dostoyevsky, I can say that his works are not for the fast readers who wants to know what is happening quickly and is a bit impatient. You need to really show some patience when you wait for him to reveal what happened in his own sweet time. Trust me, this is not an easy task.
Anyone who is reading The Brothers should be reading it for the writing and for admiring the story telling. If not, you will just abandon it within few chapters. My husband was least confident when I announced my intention to read it and I cannot blame his skepticism considering how I felt like abandoning the project. In that sense, his lack of confidence gave me a point to prove him wrong.
The main characters – Mitya, Ivan, Alyosha, Fyodor – all are slowly developed, though in my opinion not fully developed. I mean it in the sense that there are lot of unknowns about the four characters for a book that look at their actions and reactions minutely at places. But then this also gives the book the sense of mystery (yes, there is a big mystery hidden in the book) which keeps the story tied up neatly.
Dostoyevsky can exasperate you at times by the long winding way he has narrated the story, but there are places where you stop and the admire the writer who has written those beautiful lines.
At this point, I have a confession to make: I kind of skipped through the most famous chapter “The Grand Inquisitor“. I found it too complex and philosophical and would require a few times of reading to understand what Fyodor Dostoyevsky is trying to convey. So I conveniently skipped it.
Overall a great read, though I will recommend it to only serious readers. Please don’t pick this one towards your first attempt to read classics. You might lose your interest in classics altogether.