Early this morning, the question occurred to me: But why do I want Pierre to inherit everything? Why do I feel sorry for him, to the tune of 40,000 serfs and a whole bunch of land? He has just tied a policeman to the back of a bear for crying out loud.
Then it struck me. Probably other authors do this all the time, but Tolstoy was banging me over the head with it. Silly me. It took me 93 pages to notice. I feel sorry for Pierre because the snobs of the book are talking bad about him. He’s a bastard, through no fault of his own, of course. His father was a wretched playboy that poor Pierre doesn’t even know. And here’s Pierre forced into these social games by his mother. He’s flailing about, not knowing the intricacies of what he should or shouldn’t say, when, and so forth, and surrounded by pretentious, judging snobs that want to take all of his father’s money. And his father, who he doesn’t even really know is dying. The result? Poor Pierre!
Of course! I’m hitting myself over the head. Of course.