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A Dog's Heart: An Appalling Story (Penguin Classics) Paperback – 6 Sep 2007

5.0 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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£8.99 FREE UK Delivery on book orders dispatched by Amazon over £10. Only 4 left in stock (more on the way). Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
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  • One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich (Penguin Modern Classics)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics (6 Sept. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140455159
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140455151
  • Product Dimensions: 19.3 x 12.7 x 1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 179,689 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

About the Author

Mikhail Bulgakov was born in Kiev in May 1891. His sympathetic portrayal of White characters in his stories, in the plays The Days of the Turbins (The White Guard), which enjoyed great success at the Moscow Arts Theatre in 1926, and Flight (1927), and his satirical treatment of the officials of the New Economic Plan, led to growing criticism, which became violent after the play The Purple Island. He also wrote a brilliant biography of his literary hero, Jean-Baptiste Molière, but The Master and Margarita is generally considered his masterpiece. Fame, at home and abroad, was not to come until a quarter of a century after his death at Moscow in 1940.


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Format: Paperback
A stray dog is scalded by boiling water thrown by an angry cook in the middle of Moscow. He waits to die, but is found and fed by a pre eminent surgeon who takes him back to his own flat. The dog is named Sharik, and quickly finds himself a 'gentleman's dog'. Once he has fully recovered the the surgeon implants a pituitary gland and testicles from an alcoholic criminal. Thus Sharik slowly becomes Sharikov. Sadly for the surgeon and his assistant, Sharikov is not exactly the breakthrough they had imagined, refusing to learn manners or behave as they wish. Events come to a head one night when the lights in the apartment are on for many hours after dark...

I love this book and feel it is something of an ignored masterpiece. Much like `Animal farm' it can be read as straight forward fiction (magical realism) and works well as such. On the other hand it can be read as stinging social satire of Communist aspirations to create a new kind of person, and perhaps more widely on eugenics movements as a whole. As in the author's other works (and indeed many Russian writers of the time), names are very important.

I have seen other reviews commenting that the plot is rather thin, but I find it to be so full of ideas and nuanced that the relatively simple plot is not an issue. It opens and closes written from the point of view of the dog, with a more 3rd person narrative in the middle which allows for a real build of tension as the reader has to piece together what has occurred and draw their own conclusions.

Be aware that this is a novella rather than a full length work like `The Master and Margarita'.

Highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback
i absolutely loved every word of this book. if you love metaphorical writing, philosphy, satire, politics and an author with a very distinctive and succinct voice and pointed humour buy it and cherish it
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By M. D. Holley TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 7 Nov. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I cannot recommend this little novel enough. From the very first page it grips the attention, with a wonderful depiction of what it might be like to be a dog. It is very funny. It has a distinctive flavour of its own. It is highly original - quite like anything else I have read. At the same time it is thought provoking on many levels.

I thoroughly enjoyed Master and Margarita, and this is fully worthy as its little brother.
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