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The Idiot [Kindle Edition]

Fyodor Dostoyevsky , Eva M. Martin
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (349 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $10.99
Kindle Price: $0.00
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Book Description

This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery.


Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky, justly acclaimed for their translations of such Russian classics as Gogol's Dead Souls and Dostoyevski's The Brothers Karamazov, Crime and Punishment and Notes from Underground, have now undertaken another major Dostoyevski novel, The Idiot. Their trademark style fresh, crisp and faithful to the original (bumps and blemishes included) brings the story of nave, truth-telling Prince Myshkin to new life. As is true of their other translations of Dostoyevski, this will likely be the definitive edition for years to come. Intro. by Pevear.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

Review

Praise for Pevear and Volokhonsky’s translation of Crime and Punishment:

“Reaches as close to Dostoevsky’s Russian as is possible in English. . . . The original’s force and frightening immediacy is captured. . . . The Pevear and Volokhonsky translation will become the standard English version.” –Chicago Tribune

Product Details

  • File Size: 813 KB
  • Print Length: 394 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1420930591
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0082XK7IM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,408 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
182 of 193 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Doestoevsky's Master Work June 30, 2007
Format:Paperback
What could have prompted me to first read "The Idiot" at age 13 on a beach vacation with my family I can not recall. What I do recall, however, is that I was fully engrossed day after day in a world of ideas, people and places far beyond my experience. Having now just "re-read" it 39 years later (following Crime and Punishment and Brothers Karamazov), I know I couldn't possibly have digested all of its ideas at that age: atheism vs. Christianity; nihilism vs. a dying social order; Eros vs. charity; truth vs. artifice; id vs.ego and superego. And yet, I also sense I know what captivated me even then.

The characters in this novel, though usually explained as symbolic of the ideas they represent, are yet the most vividly realized characters I had ever "read" then, and still. The real-time manner in which they are drawn and followed is as if the author simply recorded their actions and conversations as and where they happened. We get to know who these people are, not through narrative description, but, as if by "candid camera", observing what they say, withhold, do, and fail to do. What emerges are fascinating, at times frightening and at times affectionate portraits of real and troubled humans: Lizaveta, the flighty, but loving society mother; General Epanchin, the successful but utterly conventional man of the house; Aglaya, the childish but delightful beauty who resents her sister's and parents' expectation for her; Ganya, who wants money and love, but plays the wounded martyr while more obviously blaming his father for his failures at both; Ivolgin, the pathetic figure of an aging man who aches for dignity and respect but who's former glory is long gone and mostly imagined; and Lebedev, the likeable sycophant and name-dropper.
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34 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars sublimely inaccessible July 25, 2004
Format:Paperback
This is one of the more famous of Dostoyevsky's novels, and quite rightly so as it has his very-unique blend of psychology, philosophy and an unrelenting view of the bleakest recesses of the soul.

I read the novel in the original Russian, so this isn't a review of any particular translation but the work itself.

In brief, the book centres around a Prince who has returned to Russia after being treated for mental illness in Switzerland since his childhood (hence the idiot). He quickly becomes involved within the upper-middle eschellons of St Petersburgian society, as people become fascinated by his direct honesty, simplicity and compassion. He becomes emotionally involved with a Fallen Woman, and this develops into a love triangle with another woman, ultimately ending in --- you guessed it! - tragedy. The Idiot is portrayed as the symbol of a child-like innocence: he genuinely wants everyone to live in harmony and love. However, the falseness, politics and backstabbing of the world of Russian middle-nobility will have none of that.

The plot is quite complicated - but not in terms of twists. The story is quite simple in terms of what happened, however much of it is told inside-out, focusing on the internal world of the characters. So, if you feel like you've missed something - a reason for a character's comment, an event etc, chances are, this will be revealed later on.

Dostoyevsky dwells on the extreme minute aspects of the emotional lives of his charactes. This is the richest aspect of the novel - and these emotions possess all the contradiction and chaos that real people have.
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49 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Innocence Lost? February 21, 2006
Format:Hardcover
Having previously read my first Dostoevsky (Crime and Punishment) I was literally chomping at the bit to start reading something else of his. I am not altogether sure as to why I found The Idiot to be the most appealing, it probably wasn't the synopsis, because I, in my ignorance, thought I was buying "The Possessed". I realized this as I pulled away from the book store, but didn't worry about it. Dostoevsky is Dostoevsky, right? Well, sort of. I was shocked when I did not find the anti-hero I expected, but Prince Lev Nikolaevich Myshkin, a pure and beautiful soul who I loved from the start. It was hard not to cheer for him throughout the course of the novel, and to feel his pain at the corrupt and confusing society that surrounded him. He is torn apart by his first love for the intriguing Nastasya Filippovna, and then later Aglaia Ivanovna, equally intriguing.

I'll be the first to admit that though I loved this book I struggled through certain portions of it, namely nearly every scene Lebedev is involved in, and Ippolit's letter. The book has a very 'meandering' quality to it, and you get the feeling at times that Dostoevsky didn't have the slightest clue how he would finish it, and so stalled for time in certain areas. This didn't really diminish the book's quality, it simply made it harder to follow. Also, towards the end it seems as if Dostoevsky finally knows, and he finally hurries off.

But, there is, perhaps, some of the greatest writing ever put on paper within these pages. Scenes such as Prince Myshkin's oratory on capital punishment, the party at Nastasya Fillippovna's, Prince Myshkin in the house of Rogozhin, and the most chilling scene in Rogozhin's bedroom.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
Great Book Russia
Published 3 days ago by Steven Young
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Enjoyable and very funny read.
Published 4 days ago by luv2reed
5.0 out of 5 stars A Failed messiah?
Society is not ready for a man of such profound goodness as the prince. The question enters my mind as I finish this very well told and very long tale, was Myshkin a failed... Read more
Published 4 days ago by VIMHP
3.0 out of 5 stars GOOD
THE IDIOT is an ebook that has a lot of twists and turns. Interesting, but heavy reading.
Published 13 days ago by BAARDA
4.0 out of 5 stars An original, well told, captivating story.
Dostoyevsky displays his talent for developing characters from the inside out. It is a good story, well told and quite original. Read more
Published 14 days ago by Michael Maciborski
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Fantastic! A "must read."
Published 17 days ago by Carole Tobin Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent translation.
Published 21 days ago by Harley Mazuk
2.0 out of 5 stars For the Russophile
If you love Russian Literature or have a passion for Dostoevsky, then this is a must. If not, not so much. The story is narrated and uneven. Read more
Published 21 days ago by Cynthia K. McWilliams
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is brilliant and all the more so when you consider how ...
This book is brilliant and all the more so when you consider how well it holds up over time. It does not feel like a tale from another era. Read more
Published 21 days ago by Fred Provencher
5.0 out of 5 stars My Godfather !
As expested.
Published 22 days ago by Flying Doctor
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