Leo Tolstoy is quite simply one of the greatest writers to ever set pen to paper. Immortalized by such epic novels as War and Peace and Anna Karenina, Tolstoy’s genius was also readily apparent in his short fiction. The Death of Ivan Ilych follows the career of the unremarkable title character, who does not question his desire to live an “easy, agreeable, gay and always decorous” life until he is lying on his death bed.
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About Leo Tolstoy
Leo Tolstoy (1828–1910) was born about two hundred miles from Moscow. His mother died when he was two, his father when he was nine. His parents were of noble birth, and Tolstoy remained acutely aware of his aristocratic roots, even when he later embraced doctrines of equality and the brotherhood of man. After serving in the army in the Caucasus and Crimea, where he wrote his first stories, he traveled and studied educational theories. In 1862 he married Sophia Behrs and for the next fifteen years lived a tranquil, productive life, finishing War and Peace in 1869 and Anna Karenina in 1877. In 1879 he underwent a spiritual crisis; he sought to propagate his beliefs on faith, morality, and nonviolence, writing mostly parables, tracts, and morality plays. Tolstoy died of pneumonia in 1910 at the age of eighty-two.
About George Guidall
George Guidall, winner of more than eighty AudioFile Earphones Awards, has won three of the prestigious Audie Award for Excellence in Audiobook Narration. In 2014 the Audio Publishers Association presented him with the Special Achievement Award for lifetime achievement/ During his thirty-year recording career he has recorded over 1,700 audiobooks, won multiple awards, been a mentor to many narrators, and shown by example the potential of fine storytelling. His forty-year acting career includes starring roles on Broadway, an Obie Award for best performance off Broadway, and frequent television appearances.