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Love and hatred : the troubled marriage of Leo and Sonya Tolstoy

Author: William L Shirer
Publisher: New York : Simon & Schuster, ©1994.
Edition/Format:   Print book : Biography : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
This volume presents a dual biography of Russians Leo and Sonya Tolstoy, offering a study of a long and stormy marriage between two remarkable individuals and the impact of their complex relationship on Leo's (1828-1910) literary work. Leo is considered a master of realistic fiction and one of the world's greatest novelists. He is best known for two long novels, War and Peace (1869) and Anna Karenina (1877). Leo and
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Genre/Form: Biography
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Shirer, William L. (William Lawrence), 1904-1993.
Love and hatred.
New York : Simon & Schuster, ©1994
(OCoLC)624422333
Named Person: Leo Tolstoy, graf; S A Tolstai︠a︡; S A Tolstai︠a︡; Leo Tolstoy, graf; Lev N Tolstoj; Sofʹja A Tolstaja
Material Type: Biography
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: William L Shirer
ISBN: 0671881620 9780671881627 9781416567509 141656750X
OCLC Number: 29259382
Description: 400 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Contents: Prologue : Flight! October 28, 1910 --
Book one : The years before : 1828-1879. The trials of early marriage --
A narrow escape from matrimony --
Two very different kinds of love --
A whirlwind courtship --
Marriage at last, despite the doubts --
Yasnaya Polyana, Sonya's jealousies, and War and Peace --
Anna Karenina --
Tolstoy's great midlife crisis --
Book two : The last years : 1879-1910. The troubled saint --
The advent of Chertkov --
The Kreutzer Sonata --
Conflict and good works --
Sonya's strange infatuation --
No rest, no peace for the writer at seventy --
War and revolution, illness and death --
The return of Chertkov --
Book three : The last year : 1910. The beginning of the end --
The last month --
The last weeks --
The last days --
Flight! --
Epilogue.
Responsibility: William L. Shirer.

Abstract:

This volume presents a dual biography of Russians Leo and Sonya Tolstoy, offering a study of a long and stormy marriage between two remarkable individuals and the impact of their complex relationship on Leo's (1828-1910) literary work. Leo is considered a master of realistic fiction and one of the world's greatest novelists. He is best known for two long novels, War and Peace (1869) and Anna Karenina (1877). Leo and Sonya's marriage was marked from the outset by sexual passion and emotional insensitivity when Tolstoy, on the eve of their marriage, gave her his diaries detailing his extensive sexual past and the fact that one of the serfs on his estate had borne him a son. Even so, their early married life was ostensibly happy and allowed Tolstoy much freedom to compose his novels with Sonya acting as his secretary, proof-reader and financial manager. However, their latter life together has been described as one of the unhappiest in literary history. Tolstoy's relationship with his wife deteriorated as his beliefs became increasingly radical. This saw him seeking to reject his inherited and earned wealth, including the renunciation of the copyrights on his earlier works. The Tolstoy family left Russia in the aftermath of the Russian Revolution.

"A touching, brilliant, and groundbreaking biography of one of literary history's most famous couples, at once a dual biography, a history, and the portrait of a long and stormy marriage, William L. Shirer's new book - written in his ninth decade - explores the passionate, highly charged, and extraordinary lives of Leo and Sonya Tolstoy. It is a compelling illumination both of the nature of genius and of the universal problems of love, sex, and marriage - themes that Tolstoy played out in his great fiction and that haunted him in his tangled domestic life." "Rich in anecdotes, wise, full of sweeping history, and imbued with Shirer's profound knowledge of literature and life, Love and Hatred ranks beside such works as Robert Massie's Nicholas and Alexandra and Nigel Nicolson's Portrait of a Marriage as a masterly, intuitive, and sympathetic exploration of the love/hate relationship between two famous, bigger-than-life people." "Beginning in 1862, when Tolstoy committed the blunder of asking his young bride to read his diaries of his bachelor life so there should be no secrets between them, and ending with his tragic flight from home (and marriage) in 1910 while the whole world waited for news of him, Love and Hatred tells the story of a great romance between two people who could live neither together nor apart - a romance that exhausted and obsessed them both, and that forms the basis for much of Tolstoy's work. The final book of William L. Shirer's long and brilliant career, it is - appropriately - a masterly re-creation of a time, of two extraordinary people, and of the very nature of love, marriage, and old age."--Jacket.

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