18) The Brothers Karamazov
, by Fyodor Dostoevsky
Finally shamed into reading this by this meme
, though it was also part of my 2006 reading resolutions
Am I unusual in finding the grand sweeping philosophical monologues about the nature of God and Man very skimmable? Apart from the tendency of the characters to go into long diatribes reinforcing how each of the three (or four) brothers represents a different facet of personality, it's a fairly engaging story; the characters - and especially the small-town Russian setting - sketched vividly and memorably, and the plot accelerating towards the end to the conclusion. I was particularly taken with the story of the schoolboys which constitutes Book Ten of the narrative; I did wonder at first if it was going to turn out to be at all relevant to the conclusion, but in fact I think it does tie in very nicely to the last chapter.
Anyway, I'm glad that is over.