Leo Tolstoy

This magnificent new clothbound edition of Tolstoy’s epic novel about love, destiny, and self-destruction is available from Penguin Classics. It would appear that Anna Karenina has it all: beauty, wealth, popularity, and a son who everyone adores. However, she has the impression that her life is meaningless until she meets the impulsive officer Count Vronsky. Their subsequent affair causes a scandal in society as well as in their family, and it quickly brings about feelings of jealousy and resentment. In contrast to this story of love and self-destruction is the vividly observed story of Levin, a man who is looking for contentment and meaning in his life. Levin is also a self-portrait of Tolstoy, as he is depicted in the story as someone searching for these things in his life. The PEN and Book of the Month Club Translation Prize were awarded to Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky in 2001 for their acclaimed and contemporary translation of the work. In this edition, their translation is accompanied by an introduction written by Richard Pevear as well as a preface written by John Bayley. “The new and brilliantly witty translation by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky is an absolute necessity,” wrote Lisa Appignanesi for the Independent’s Books of the Year list. “Pevear and Volokhonsky are at once scrupulous translators and vivid stylists of English,” wrote James Wood in the New Yorker. “Their superb rendering allows us,” wrote Wood, “to grasp the palpability of Tolstoy’s “characters, acts, and situations.”