Author: Arthur Koestler
First print : 1940
Name publisher: Jonathan Cape
Why did I pick this book:
I was walking around in the school library and picked a book with a title I found even but a bit interesting. This book was the one my eye fell on first and I liked the description. I thought it would be a bit of a challenge as well for the book wasn't written in easy english.
The book is about a man named Rubashov. He was thrown into prison for things he did which his party did not enjoy. He is waiting for his death inside the cells. As he walked around in his cell he thought about the things that happend to him in the past, people he had met, and what happend to them. All of these stories ended in tragedy. They all had a political meaning which fell back on the verses. Each chapter had a verse which, if you payed attention, could be found in each of Rubashov's stories in a certain way. If you read the verse you'd know what the subject to one of his story's would be. Never would you know what you'd hear but you'd have a little hint at what will happen. Those verses are texts from (I think) saints or highly ranked priests or something. They contained a certain truth to them, even though not properly finished. Rubashov went through a lot of his own stories and had quite a few conversations with a certain tapping code. He had one neighbouring prisoner at start but that became 2 as the story progresses. Rubashov had been put in an isolation cell. Ivanov tried to make Rubashov write a letter that said he was guilty to being opposed to the party. He used a peaceful technique as he tried to make him reach the conclusion that he was guilty by himself. But he failed and near the end of the story is shot. Gletkin used a different technique trying to tire him out but still trying to make him guilty of a crime which Rubashov thinks he did not commit. Gletkin did not fail. Rubashov eventually gave in to him and said he commited the crime. It was said he would still die with a bit of turning around the subject but it was still said and in the end it happend. He died by a hit of the back of a gun.
The main character is Rubashov. He is put in jail, on death sentance, for a crime he commited according to the party.
In the book he lives his life in jail and has flashbacks about his past. He also shows that everyone will eventually give up.
The main character stays quite the same during the entire story.
Only when Gletkin used his ways he lost what he normally did.
The main character thinks the idea's of the party are wrong and wants to change it and works on it steadily which put him into jail. He isn't easily offended and does alot of daring things.
Round ... flat characters....... I'd say Rubashov is flat for he didn't get much to eat ^-^
The most important characters except for Rubashov which is the main character are The man in the prison 402, Glekin, Ivanov.
The subject interessted me for a small reason. I liked it for being a book where you can really think about what is happening.
That you cannot just simply scan through the book and know it.
I have not became to think differently about communistic politics.
I cannot see myself in a prison due to political problems I might have caused, but I can understand as a party why they had to get rid of him. He opposed a threat to the party if his idea's fell off onto the people.
The book didn not really miss anything it gave me a nice feel and it made me flow through the book without really any diffuculties.
The book has an inlogical line of events for in one moment he is walking around in his cell and the second moment he is in a room talking with people. He did not show a place that he went "into" his memories. Rubashov just mostly did that if he walked around, just not always.
What happend in the prison is quite credible for extortion and the like also happen in many country's and torturing people is quite normal in certain prisons in certain country's aswell.
The event that made the best impression on me was when I read the first verse. The very first line said alot about the book and I found that quite amazing that just one line could say so much.
The characters are not predictable. A lot of things happened to everyone and they off course changed a bit throughout the
story. They all had a few things they do, but you'd never know when.
I would not want to be the main character even if I wasn't in his situation. He smokes, does not have any really good points but only likes to think about things. I like to think about things when i feel like it. He does it all the time and goes for the most logic of choises which in my opinion isn't always the best.
I didn't like his standards he lives by as said before he lives on the choise he makes by looking for the most logic of them.