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Wednesday, March 10, 2021

The Insulted and the InjuredThe Insulted and the Injured by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Out of all the Dostoyevsky I've read so far, this is my least favorite. That's not to say it's a bad novel, far from that, but I can only judge Dostoyevsky on Dostoyevsky.

Of course, if I WERE to judge him by someone else, I'd have to link this to Charles Dickens, but only in this particular novel. It's practically a clone of Dickens with all the pathos and hand-wringing. I half-expected, thanks to my knowledge of Dostoyevsky in general, to watch the moral and physical slide into turpitude to come from our main characters, to wallow in the mud. But this didn't quite happen. Indeed, the villain in the tale was precisely who we thought it was and the women were all perfectly angelic in a way that made me think that they were cardboard cutouts.

Please don't mistake me. Dostoyevsky has written some truly fantastic angelic waifs in his time, but it's more an expression of his loving the divine more than an actual representation of human females. He writes those just fine, with all their flaws and miseries, and some of their flaws and miseries aren't even the men in their lives!

I jest. Kinda. But one thing is certain: it's an entertaining yarn and it is one of the most amicable three-way love stories I've ever read. It's almost unbelievable! lol

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