Top Ten War and Peace CharactersTolstoy's War and Peace has many wonderful characters that have made me both fangirl in joy and cry. Here are the top ten best. Oh, and beware of spoilers.
The Top Ten
Andrei has been through a lot throughout the book. (Incoming spoilers ahead.) His wife died, leaving him a newborn son he never really got to know, then he went back to war and was wounded. sometime later in the book he met Natasha, but upon announcing his betrothal to his family, his father delays it for a year. And during this time Andrei goes back to war, and Natasha, unable to help herself, cheats on him with Anatole Kuragin. At the end of that year of separation, Andrei goes back to Moscow, and then back to the war again. This time he is fatally wounded when ignoring a fellow soldier's warning to get away from a gas shell type thing, and it explodes. Andrei then meets Anatole in the dodgy war hospital where he is getting his leg sawn off. Anatole supposedly dies. Andrei is said to die too. BUT when Moscow's residents flee, Andrei is one of the wounded soldiers staying with the residents. He is spotted by Sonya and then she tells her cousin Natasha who stays with him in her ...more
Pierre: the socially-awkward illegitimate hero of the book. Pierre always kept a good heart on his search for true happiness throughout the book, and does his best to help others. Upon linking Napoleon Bonaparte to the number 666 (he also did the same to himself but only accomplished it by cheating), he vows to kill him, but ends up being Imprisoned when Moscow goes up in flames, where then does he discover happiness with the help of a fellow prisoner. He too gets a happy ending.
I adore Natasha. She is the character I most relate to, and has shown a lot of development throughout the book as she grows through her teenage years. She is so full of life and hope, and her encounters with Andrei and Anatole describe what it's like to be in love more than any other book I have read. Her childish foolishness at the start of the book grows into open-mindedness and warm-heartedness as the book goes on. She has the ability to realise her actions are wrong as they happen. Natasha has that charm which makes any person fall in love with her (Denisov, Pierre to name some examples), but instead of that labelling her as a Mary-sue in fiction, it contrasts with her flaws of having a one-track mind at times and sometimes being narrow-minded to other people's advice. And coming to think of it, she did have a happy ending after all.
Anatole is awesome. I can't help but love villainous characters. I loved his and Natasha's plotline and cried at his death when Andrei was there for him when no-one else was. The night when he planned to abduct Natasha and marry in her in Poland was so intense and villainous that I couldn't help but love him more. I guess karma finally got him in the end.
Pierre's promiscuous unfaithful wife who came to a sticky end. She cheated on him with three people: Boris Drubetskoy, her brother Anatole and Dolohov (who I HATE). She manipulated Pierre and pushed and manipulated him to the limit where he somehow managed to pick up a marble table and threaten to throw it at her. However I couldn't help but feel bad for her when she discovered she was pregnant with a (presumably Boris's) child and overdosed on medicine which caused her to a failed birth alone with no friends or doctor for consolation and comfort. An angel left to die in blood-soaked sheets. Tragic.
Nikolai was focused on a lot more towards the end of the book. He made his family's debt even worse by gambling it away to Dolohov one evening due to peer pressure. And to save it, he sacrificed himself to marry an heiress (Maria Bolkonsky) instead of his beloved Sonya to save the family fortune. Also he was awesome in the wolf hunt scene. Not to mention he's possibly the only blonde character in the book.
Maria is so selfless and kind-hearted. She's a lovely guardian to her nephew (Andrei's son) and remained positive even though she was being verbally abused by her father. After her father's death, she would have killed herself if it wasn't for Nikolai, who she marries at the end of the book.
He and Nikolai are basically inseparable. Denisov is just so laid-back and happy-go-lucky. The cool thing about Denisov is that he pops up out of nowhere.
"Nikolai comes home from the war, and who's that man next to him? It's Denisov! Nobody expected to see him again! "
"Oh look, Moscow is up in flames! Oh, a wild Denisov appears! "
"Petya is at war! Oh look, it's Denisov coming by on a horse! "
All of the above summaries actually happened in the book, by the way. I'm not kidding. And his way of speaking and dialect is so cool. You can basically see it written in the book in his lines of dialogue.
Sonya loved Nikolai so much that she sacrificed herself and broke off their engagement (which has lasted so many years) so he could marry Maria and save the Rostov family. She's also Natasha's cousin and best friend. Also she was the one that found out Anatole's plan to abduct Natasha and stopped it. She's so underrated!
Completely underrated, honestly the most wholesome character in the book. She was willing to risk her friendship with Natasha to keep Natasha from making the worst decision of her life. She deserves so much more...
Petya was such a cutie when he was fifteen/sixteen and he tried to join the war. He eventually did, met up with Denisov and Dolohov, was adorable when he offered them raisins, saying that he brought them from home. Then he died a tragic death bleeding out onto the snow!? Uh, excuse me Tolstoy? He was so cute and innocent, why did he have to die? His parents were so heartbroken that his father soon died. His death and its aftermath also made me cry.
Marya. Just Marya.
The most fun character