And Pierre’s downfall is nothing compared with this chapter. Prince Bolkonsky (now astonishingly transplated to Moscow – proving that his daughter’s letter in Book 6 was wrong about that, too) and now he’s gone to Moscow, and is becoming thoroughly more unpleasant by the minute.
What I never get is what Mademoiselle Bourienne thinks about all this. Is she a gold-digger, and enjoys the chance that she might get a share of the old guy’s fortune? Or is she just terrified and goes along with everything else?
Either way, the family traumas are mounting.
Oh yeah, and while I think about it – I did love the line from 8.1 that talked about the particular Russian trait of seeing the good and beautiful things in life – while at the same time recognising that there was a lot of misery and evil in the world.
If that doesn’t sum up Tolstoy, then I don’t think anything does. (Actually, it can sum up a lot of things, really, from the Bible through to Mahler symphonies.)
Anyway, must run. See you tomorrow!