Shop now Shop now Shop Black Friday Deals Week in Fashion Cloud Drive Photos Shop now Learn More Shop now Shop now DIYED Shop now Shop Fire Shop Kindle Paperwhite Listen in Prime Shop now Shop now

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars5
3.8 out of 5 stars
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
Format: PaperbackChange
Price:£12.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

Your rating(Clear)Rate this item
Share your thoughts with other customers

There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

32 of 36 people found the following review helpful
on 11 January 2009
For 30 years I've proselytized this book, but converted not a single person. In my opinion this is consistently the greatest work of art ever created, greater than 'Tristan and Isolde', 'Ulysses', 'Moby-Dick', 'The Idiot', 'Hamlet', or any of those other works of genius which find profound patterns of beauty in extremes of human chaos. This plunges deeper into the chaos and brings up stranger, wilder, more intimate forms of beauty than any of them, and then weaves them into a more coherent whole. I suppose most people can't get past the narrator being an unreliable, disturbingly schizophrenic prat, out-Gogoling Gogol; but this is a joyful, wonderfully funny subversion of all our comfort zones. Oh well.

Malmstad and Maguire's translation is the one to get, not McDuff's turgid effort.
99 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 30 March 2010
I had not of heard of Andrei Bely until some weeks ago when researching Robert Musil the author of The Man Without Qualities and The Confusions of Young Torless I came across a reviewer who averred that great as Musil was Bely was the one who should be up there with Proust and Joyce as an innovator of Modernism.Such a claim could only be responded to by sending for his novel Petersburg. And I am glad I did.It is an entirely different book from any other book written by a Russian yet is most definitely about Russia and more specifically St Petersburg 1905 with Pushkin's Bronze Horseman supplying the chapter heading rubrics.It is definitely Modern, demands the readers full attention and makes no concessions yet is very entertaining and in in its way enthralling but I will have to read it again.I read it without recourse to the background information the translators provide.I therefore missed a lot of the books import.It is a book that should be on the shelf of anyone who enjoys Modern literature along with Proust, Joyce and Musil.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 4 May 2013
I began reading this having just returned from my first and long anticipated trip to st petersburg and the style of the book is decidedly off-beat, a bit james joyce a bit laurence sterne but the cumulative effect is actually quite absorbing in its recreation of a city and its atmosphere
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 2 January 2014
A long slog though beautifully composed if you have the patience of a saint and the concentration of an established reader. Beli is a painter with words massed up thickly. He has clear and nightmarish vision.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
4 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 6 December 2011
I have found this book almost unreadable, but I am intrigued to know if it is untranslatable or if there is a better translation somewhere. Maybe I am losing the ability to concentrate on difficult works but it seems to me that either you read this in Russian or you forget about it.
11 commentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Petersburg by Andrei Bely (Paperback - 7 Sept. 2010)

The Little Demon (Penguin Classics)
The Little Demon (Penguin Classics) by Fyodor Sologub (Paperback - 25 July 2013)

We by Yevgeny Zamyatin (Paperback - 25 Nov. 1993)

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.