And here, as we get closer to the action that’s coming up, we meet the crazy peasant guerrilla, Tihon. (Well, okay, he’s not crazy – he’s just fearless.)
I’m almost sorry he didn’t get introduced earlier in the novel – I think he would be great fun. Certainly, if they were making a movie of War and Peace nowadays to appeal to the current generation of movie goers, there’s nothing quite like a fearless peasant armed with a musket and an ax, as a good “sidekick” character to cheer in the action scenes.
Of course, this feels like another bizarre stage of the whole war. We went through the formal battle years, then the destruction of Moscow, and now this snapshot of life among the guerrillas. It’s like reading about the Vietnam war, compared with, say, the American Civil War. A far different type of warfare . . . and it breeds different characters.