1) With the multiple deaths, this week started to feel a little more like Tolstoy was starting to wrap up some of his characters' stories. How do you feel about the way Helene's death was dealt with compared to Andrew's?
For some reason, this week felt like the beginning of the end. Obviously it was the end for Helene and Andrew but I just felt like loose ends were starting to come together and that the end was in sight!
Helene's death was classic Tolstoy killing off one of his characters in a blink-and-you-miss-it fashion but Andrew's seemed to have more thought about it. I mean, it wasn't quite as much page space as you'd expect for the death of one of the major characters in an epic novel but it was more considered. He was at least the focus of an entire chapter and got to do some musing about his impending death before he was written out. I wouldn't necessarily put it entirely down to gender but it does seem as though Tolstoy just can't write a good death scene!
2) I certainly wouldn't go so far as to call myself a Pierre fan but his experiences as a prisoner were quite moving. How do you think Pierre is going to fare as we approach the end of the novel?
In short, I don't foresee a happy ending for Pierre.
3) Now the competition's opened back up, who are you backing for Nicholas Rostov's future wife, rich heiress Mary or devoted Sonya?
4) The Rostovs have always been my favourite family in War and Peace and seeing them from Mary's perspective was a little bit sad. How is everyone feeling about how things are going for them?
See you next week as we really start to close in on those epilogues!