Book Reviews The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov

Published in Books - 2 mins to read

Well, the whole 52 books in 52 weeks thing is looking admittedly unlikely to pan out, but I have nonetheless made some progress by finally finishing ‘The Master and Margarita’ by Mikhail Bulgakov.

Despite the fact it essentially took me 6 months to read, I thoroughly enjoyed Bulgakov’s magnum opus. Not published until 17 years after his death, and even then heavily censored, the novel can only really be described as absurd. Satan and a handful of his aides travel to Soviet Moscow and wreak havoc on its inhabitants, primarily its literary elite, through the use of transforming banknotes and disappearing dresses, prophecies of imminent death and Behemoth, the black cat who frequently clutches a gun in his paw. All the while, Bulgakov also gives his own version of events surrounding the execution of Jesus, or Yeshua as he is in the book, retold with Pontius Pilate seemingly the protagonist and Yeshua having only a lone disciple in Levi Matthew.

It’s very hard to ‘review’ this book, because it is truely so bizarre, and I have never read anything like it. It was a phenomenal read, perhaps because of its oddities rather than in spite of them. Trying to extract some kind of allegory or overarching message from the story is a job for a far greater intellect than me, but I cannot recommend it strongly enough purely as a romp through the ridiculous.

9/10, a sensational read.

Books read this year: 3/52

Next book: Moscow to the End of the Line by Benedict Erofeev

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