Not all of Tolstoy's works were the size of War & Peace as this rather short novella demonstrates. The Kreutzer Sonata begins with a man on a train (because most Russian novels have to involve a train ride at some point) telling the story of his marriage to a rather shocked passenger. The whole affair turns out to be a melodramatic, dark little tale about a couple that can't live with each other but then can’t seem to live without each other either.Jealousy and lust dominate the bitter marriage of the protagonist and of course it’s not going to end well at all. The story takes the couple down a more and more tragic route before leading to the eventual violence which is described in quite a vivid way.
Tolstoy manages to stick in his views on marriage in general (bitter much!) which now seem outdated from a modern perspective (only men have sex drives apparently) Unfortunately I fear that Tolstoy wanted the reader to come away from this having learned some kind of lesson and if this is the case then the reader should promptly ignore it, but if you like your fiction tragic and dark there is still a lot to be gained by reading this.Posted by Jess