By Leo Tolstoy
Read How You Want, (2008)
EasyRead Large Print Edition
Reviewed by Israel Drazin - March 29, 2010
The devil in this diminutive drama is the gnawing need of an otherwise good husband to have sex with another man's wife or it is, at least from the good husband's perspective, the adulterous wife herself. Eugene Irtenev was a good son and brother. When his father died he took over his father's estate and scrupulously paid his father's debts, supported his mother and gave his brother his fair share of the property. Eugene recognized that he had a need for sex, only for health reasons, of course. He developed a relationship with the beautiful wife of a peasant who was frequently away from home, which he piously discontinued when he decided to marry another woman. Eugene's wife was ideal in every way, except for beauty. She treated him exceptionally well. Eugene did all in his power to avoid his prior consort even though she gave birth to a male child who was probably his. But then he saw her again and wanted her again with all his being.
Tolstoy describes the "horrors" of his "torment" very well and how he repeatedly tried to overcome it and what happened to him, his wife and the wife of the other man. He offers two alternative endings to his story and readers can choose which of the two they like best.The Devil is available from Read How You Want, an on-demand publisher that makes books available in a variety of formats including Braille, DAISY, and five different large print formats. This range of formats makes this, and other books, available not only to visually impaired individuals, but also anyone with a reading or physical disability that makes reading standard print books difficult.
Dr. Israel Drazin is the author of fifteen books, including a series of five volumes on the Aramaic translation of the Hebrew Bible, which he co-authors with Rabbi Dr. Stanley M. Wagner, and a series of four books on the twelfth century philosopher Moses Maimonides, the latest being Maimonides: Reason Above All, published by Gefen Publishing House, www.gefenpublishing.com. The Orthodox Union (OU) publishes daily samples of the Targum books on www.ouradio.org.