The Russian novelist and moral philosopher Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910) ranks as one of the world’s great writers, and his “War and Peace” has been called the greatest novel ever written. The purpose of all true creative art, he believed, is to teach. But the message in all his stories is presented with such humour that the reader hardly realises that it is strongly didactic.
The seven parts into which this book is divided include the best known Tolstoy stories. “God Sees the Truth, but Waits” and “A Prisoner in the Caucasus” which Tolstoy himself considered as his best; “How Much Land Does a Man Need?” depicting the greed of a peasant for land; the most brilliantly told parable, “Ivan the Fool” – these are all contained in this volume.