Childhood, Boyhood, Youth
By Leo Tolstoy
Translated by Dora O'Brien
This trilogy of short novels, taken as a whole, recounts the young narrator’s early life up to his university days, each episode told through the perceptions, points of view and emotions felt by the protagonist at the time. Based on Tolstoy’s own life and experiences, this fictionalized account of a young man growing into the world combines anecdote with frank personal assessment and philosophical extrapolation, as the author’s Stendhalian take on the confessional genre confronts and blurs the notions of reality and imagination.
Tolstoy’s first published work, which launched him on a successful writing career, Childhood, Boyhood, Youth – besides offering an early display of his storytelling and stylistic abilities – provides the reader with invaluable insight into the personal and literary development of one of the greatest writers of all time.
Tolstoy is the greatest Russian writer of prose fiction.
Leo Tolstoy (1828–1910) is regarded by some as the greatest novelist of all time. With such masterpieces as Anna Karenina and War and Peace, he influenced generations of writers and changed the course of world literature.