Review

Review: Crime And Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky

“We always imagine eternity as something beyond our conception, something vast, Vast! But why must it be vast?”

Genre: Classic Fiction
Pages: 485
Published: 1866
Rate: 4 ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Goodreads Synopsis
Raskolnikov, a destitute and desperate former student, wanders through the slums of St Petersburg and commits a random murder without remorse or regret. He imagines himself to be a great man, a Napoleon: acting for a higher purpose beyond conventional moral law. But as he embarks on a dangerous game of cat and mouse with a suspicious police investigator, Raskolnikov is pursued by the growing voice of his conscience and finds the noose of his own guilt tightening around his neck. Only Sonya, a downtrodden prostitute, can offer the chance of redemption.

“In order to understand any man one must be deliberate and careful to avoid forming prejudices and mistaken ideas, which are very difficult to correct and get over afterward.

My Take
I have postponed writing this review close to two years now because I didn’t know where to begin.

Crime and Punishment is such a thrilling read. I viewed it as a detective novel – like a who done it? I love Dostovoesky’s writing is so compelling with vivid descriptions and characters. I keep on asking myself what he wanted to achieve with this book. The characters are so complex, with a very unreliable narrator in Raskolnikov. Sonia who is written to purposely affect our main character through a slow of meekness and childlike way that it was such an interesting development to see.

The book is largely character based & it took me a while to familiarise myself with the characters, of which some I could care less for. It seemed like everyone knew everyone in St. Petersburg & it became frustrating at some point. Raskolnikov takes centre stage though as the story line is mainly about him. How do you live once you’ve take a life? With a very guilty conscious that’s how. Fyodor writes him as a social critic with a very complex life & material struggle. There are a few different story lines that contribute to the main plot that were interesting to read, like the Sonia arc and his sister’s story arc.

Crime and Punishment has deep concern with morality, from the first few pages trying to show & explain the motives of killing. The ending is what threw me off. With a possible redemption & an attempt to punishment for the crimes committed, its an open ending that leaves one to fill it up with their imagination.

Crime & Punishment was my first Russian Literature and it made me fall in love with the genre that led me to read more from it. I love it.

Have you read Crime and Punishment? What did you think about it?

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