I find it nice to re-read books I have read when I was in my teens. So, here I am back to War and Peace. Almost to the end of book 1. I have the memories of when I read the book maybe 20-25 years ago. The memories have blurred with the passing of time. Re-reading the book is discovering it anew.
It’s 1809. The Rostov family has moved temporarily to St Petersburg. The whole family attend the grand ball hosted by a noble man on New Years which has a guest of honor the Emperor Alexander I.
It is the first grand ball of Nataša Rostov. There she meets again Prince Andréj Bolkonsky who is struck by her beauty, falls in love with her and decides to ask her hand. He consult with his long time friend Pierre Bezuchov who tells prince Andéj to follows his feelings. Nataša notices also Pierre at the grand ball.
Prince Andréj asks his father, Prince Nikolai Andreich Bolkonsky, permission to meet Nataša’s father and ask the hand of his daughter. Prince Andréj’s father is not happy about his son’s proposition and gives his permission under the conditions that his son would wait one year before marrying Nataša. He tells him to leave the country. Travel to Europe. If in one year, his and Nataša’s feelings have not changed they would then marry.
Prince Andréj is re-born. He feels life, love, compassion which he thought he had lost and goes to the Rostovs to ask to marry Nataša. Permission is granted. Nataša accepts as well and feel the join for the love towards him and the sandees for his imminent departure.
The story continues …